When Tesla launched the Model 3’s leasing program, the company remarked that customers would not be allowed to buy out their vehicles at the end of their lease periods as they would be utilized in the upcoming Robotaxi service. Tesla’s recently-launched “New Leasing Experience” for 2021 seems to suggest that this will no longer be the case.
Tesla’s “New Leasing Experience” was announced in an email sent to leaseholders recently. The communication from the company noted that the program will be launched in early 2021, and it would feature several changes that could make the vehicle leasing experience more convenient. These include functions that would allow customers to view invoices, current account balances, and manage payment options from their Tesla Account.
Yet perhaps the most notable update hinted at in Tesla’s email indicated that lessees could now buy out their leased vehicles. Granted, this option had been available for Model S and Model X lessees for some time now, but Tesla’s recent email was also sent to customers who have leased the Model 3 and Model Y. Such an option had not been available for the Model 3 and Model Y previously.
Following is Tesla’s email to its lease customers:
Tesla’s New Leasing Experience
In the next few months, Tesla is moving the lease experience to your Tesla Account. Here’s what you need to know:
New Place to Pay
You can conveniently make your payments and enroll in Autopay within your Tesla Account.
New Management Options
Your Tesla Account will be your destination to conduct other actions including:
- Extending your lease
- Transferring your lease
- Purchasing your car
- Selling to Non-Tesla dealers
- Reporting a Total Loss
- Requesting an Early Lease Termination
We’re launching this new experience early 2021. You will receive more information when we get closer to your launch date. No action is required at this point.
If Tesla would indeed allow Model 3 and Model Y lessees to buy out their vehicles at the end of their lease period, it would suggest that the electric car maker had implemented some changes to its planned Robotaxi rollout. During the launch of the Model 3’s leases, after all, it was emphasized by the company that leased units of the all-electric sedan are specifically intended to be utilized for the company’s autonomous ride-hailing service.
The reasons behind this potential change remain unknown for now, though it should be noted that Tesla today is a far different company compared to the Tesla that launched the Model 3’s lease option last year. Considering the company’s planned vehicle production ramp in the coming years and the activation of sites like Gigafactory Texas and Giga Berlin, Tesla could very well have the capability to produce enough vehicles for its Robotaxi service without relying on a fleet of leased cars.