Everything We Expect From The Tesla Model Y Juniper

Everything We Expect From The Tesla Model Y Juniper

The next-generation of the Model Y is set to begin production in October 2024 under the codename Project Juniper.

Amid the Tesla panoply, the Model Y has always stood out as the most valuable choice you could possibly make. This take is obviously a popular one, considering how the Model Y managed to become the world’s best-selling vehicle in 2023. And yet, it appears the flagship electric SUV has not hit its prime yet. In March of this year, Reuters revealed Tesla was working on the next generation of the Model Y, codenamed Project Juniper.

As of now, we have yet to know the performance specs for the upcoming Model Y, as the company has yet to divulge anything substantial. Nonetheless, a few improvements under the skin shouldn’t be out of the equation. Judging by the Model 3 Highland, which has recently been released, the Model Y Juniper should normally come with a fair bit of fine-tuning as far as design goes. In any case, we should find out more around next year, since Project Juniper is not set to begin until October 2024.

Although we don’t know the exact pricing, we can reasonably expect the Juniper to come with a certain degree of budget-friendliness. After all, Tesla has recently gone on a generosity spree, cutting prices on the Model 3, and the Model Y, as well as its more premium offerings by as much as 18,500. While these discounts seemed like the result of a backlog, they might very well turn out to be a permanent fixture, as part of Tesla’s quest toward being more affordable.

A High-End Feel To Match The Hefty Price-Tag

Although the next-generation of the Model Y is far from being a commercial reality. It has nonetheless captivated some interest online. As shown above, an X (Twitter) user by the name of @LaMianDesign designed a 3D rendering of what the restyled SUV could potentially look like on the outside. Much like the Model 3 Highland, the Juniper will likely feature sustainable changes on the inside as well. Tesla may very well offer a steering yoke on the Juniper, with an optional steer-by-wire system to increase maneuverability.

The yoke has not exactly been a fan favorite in the past, and is more of a trendy gadget than a practical tool. Thus, Tesla’s choice to stick to the unorthodox yoke would be questionable, yet to be expected. However, if innovation is a must, then the sporty steering wheel from the 2024 Model 3 Highland would be a preferable option. At the same time, the lack of stacks on the latter has raised some complaints from customers, and it will perhaps influence Tesla’s decision when adapting it to the new Model Y.

In any case, much like the newly revamped Model 3, the flagship SUV might also be given a more premium cabin. The new interior features should notably involve:

  • Ventilated seats, and more supple rear seats
  • RGB ambient lights
  • A rear 8-inch screen
  • Improved Bluetooth microphone performance
  • Optimized Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
  • A new 17-speaker sound system, equipped with two subwoofers and two amplifiers

The cockpit quietness should also be improved, courtesy of 360º acoustic glazing. In the spirit of giving the Model Y a more high-end feel, the company might also style the interior in a bi-color scheme. Premium materials such as Alcantara and wood-trimming should also be at the rendezvous on the higher trims.

The Juniper Will Possibly Run On Tesla’s 4680 Batteries

The next-generation Model Y will come with sizable changes under the skin. The Juniper will apparently be pinned on a new battery architecture, and possibly boast a range of up to 400 miles. This would effectively make it the most efficient electric SUV on the market. Currently, it is the Fisker Ocean Performance that enjoys that title, with 360 miles on a full charge, while the Model Y Long Range is limited to 330 miles. That number comes with a bit of a twist, however.

The Model Y Long Range already boasts a higher MPGe than its Fisker counterpart, and a higher range would further solidify its competitive advantage. Furthermore, such specs forcibly mean the new Model Y will be powered by Tesla’s 4680 battery format.

The latter promises to offer six times more power, and five times more energy than standard batteries, which could translate into a higher top speed, and better acceleration on the Juniper. Another update to look forward to is the suspension upgrade. Customers have previously complained about suspension issues on the Tesla panoply. The Juniper might remedy that, however, as it is expected to offer better handling and higher stability on the road. Furthermore, there are also rumors of a possible charging input of 350 kW, accompanied by an 800-volt architecture.

Expect Fully Autonomous Driving Since It Is The Best-selling EV

Perhaps the most exciting aspect of the new Model Y is the prospect of Full Self Driving (FSD). When speaking at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference in Shanghai in July 2023, Elon Musk claimed that Tesla vehicles would reach Level 4 or Level 5 of self-driving autonomy by the end of the year.

The CEO had previously mentioned the possibility of Level 5 SAE, which would effectively allow drivers to sleep while the car operates itself. While these claims are exciting, they have nonetheless become redundant. If somehow true, these advancements would propel the Model Y Juniper to the stratosphere, and only serve to further stifle its competitors amid its growing success. It is worth noting that the Model Y was also able to maintain its position as the world’s best-selling EV through Q1 and Q2 of this year. While some competitors, such as the Volkswagen ID.4 and the Mustang Mach-E have managed to get some steam, they remain nonetheless far behind.

2023 Tesla Model Y Performance Specs

Model Y Performance Model Y Long Range
Electric Motor Dual-motor, all-wheel drive Dual-motor, all-wheel drive
Horsepower 456 horsepower 384 horsepower
Torque 497 pound-feet of torque 376 pound-feet of torque
Top Speed 155 mph 135 mph
Acceleration (0-60mph) 3.5 seconds 4.4 seconds
Electric Range 303 miles 330 miles

As of now, the only vehicle (in all categories included) that still rivals the electric SUV in the sales charts is the Ford F-150. The famous off-roader has been America’s sweetheart for almost five decades now. The Model Y Juniper might have just what it takes to claim that prestige, especially with the mass vehicle electrification that is targeted for 2030. The new facelift and reinvigorated cabin seem like the missing piece in the Model Y. With such changes, rivals like the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and the 2024 Chevy Blazer EV could very well pale in comparison in terms of value. Nonetheless, all we have for now is time and speculation.

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