Tesla has implemented a series of price adjustments for the Model S, Model 3, and Model X. Based on observations from the Tesla community, several variants of the three vehicles have seen their prices drop by as much as $5,000, on the eve of Tesla’s speculated rollout of its next-generation batteries.
Recent reports indicate that in North America, Tesla had reduced the price of the Model S and Model X by $5,000. The Model S Long Range now starts at $74,990 while the Performance Model S starts at $94,990. The Model X, on the other hand, has adopted the Raven Model S’ previous pricing, starting at $79,990 for the Long Range version and $99,990 for the Performance variant.
The Model 3’s adjustments were more subtle, with both the Dual Motor AWD and Performance version seeing a price reduction of $2,000. But the biggest update here lies in the price adjustment of the Standard Range Plus Model 3, which now starts at $37,990. This lowers the entry point to Tesla’s premium EVs, while closing the gap between the SR+ and the $35,000 Standard Range Model 3 further.
Price adjustments have been adopted for the Model S and X in China as well, with the flagship vehicles seeing a reduction in cost by RMB29,000 or about US$4,000. These reductions did come at a cost, however, as Tesla China’s Model S and Model X no longer have Free Unlimited Supercharging bundled in. Tesla China’s locally made Model 3 that are produced in Gigafactory Shanghai did not receive a price adjustment.
With such a widespread change in its vehicle pricing, speculations have emerged from the Tesla community about the reason behind the company’s recent adjustments. While some news outlets have noted that the reductions were likely implemented to boost wavering demand, a significant portion of the electric vehicle community are speculating that Tesla may have simply reached a point where its operations have become more efficient, and its production costs have gotten more optimized.
Interestingly, such a scenario was mentioned by the company in its first quarter earnings call, when Chief Finance Officer Zachary Kirkhorn mentioned that the Gigafactory Shanghai produced Model 3 still has a lot of potential for further price reductions. This, of course, becomes particularly notable when one considers Tesla’s battery innovations.
The Silicon Valley-based carmaker was expected to hold a Battery Day event this month, but the event was postponed partly due to the onset of the coronavirus. Speculations are abounding about what Battery Day is poised to reveal, with many in the EV community estimating that Tesla will be announcing several milestones, such as a million-mile battery and a system that allows the company to produce cells at around $100/kWh or cheaper. If Tesla is indeed close to these milestones, then a reduction to its vehicles’s prices may definitely be warranted.
After all, Tesla’s mission is to usher in sustainability by offering vehicles that are preferable alternatives to those that are equipped with an internal combustion engine. To achieve this, Tesla must make sure that its cars are within reach of the mainstream auto market. Price reductions are a great way to step towards this goal.