Tesla Model Y Teased at Shareholder Meeting
Musk believes mystery model will exceed Model 3 demand
At Tesla's annual shareholder meeting this week, CEO Elon Musk discussed plans for new products, including the Model Y. Shown in this teaser image, the Model Y is expected to hit roads around 2019.
Previously, the Model Y crossover was expected to sit on the same platform as the Model 3 entry-level sedan. But now, Musk hints it will go in a different direction. "There's been some criticism we should sort of do it derived from the Model 3 platform but I think actually we made a mistake in trying to derive the Model X from the Model S platform," he said at the meeting. "It would have been better to just design an SUV the way an SUV should be designed and design a sedan the way a sedan should be designed."
With production at the Fremont factory "bursting at the seams," Musk said Model Y will require a new plant with a location that has yet to be determined. Manufacturing improvements can be achieved to build the vehicle in an entirely new way, and capital expenditures can be decreased by a factor of two from the Model 3. He also noted demand for the Model Y will probably exceed demand for the Model 3.
Meanwhile, plans to reveal an electric semi-truck are still on track for September. The automaker will reveal a working prototype that was designed with input from future Tesla truck customers. The semi could reach scale production in as little as 18 months but likely closer to two years, Musk revealed.
In the nearer term, the first Model 3 will be delivered next month, and around that time, a configurator will go live. But to keep things simple, buyers will only be able to select from a few choices such as colors and wheel sizes. The dual motor configuration is not expected to be available until the end of this year or early next year.