The wait is almost over. After a long period of speculation, leaks, and rumors, it appears that some concrete details about Tesla’s next-gen vehicle platform are about to be announced.
Tesla has grand plans for the coming years, with the company aiming to reach 20 million vehicles per year by the end of the decade. To accomplish this, Tesla needs more vehicles apart from the S3XY lineup, the Semi, and the Cybertruck. The company needs to have a car that can compete on even pricing grounds with vehicles like the Toyota Corolla.
Elon Musk has been pretty conservative about the company’s efforts to roll out an affordable car, with the CEO stating in January last year that Tesla is “not currently working on a $25,000 car.” Musk later noted that Tesla would instead work on a dedicated Robotaxi platform, but by November, the CEO admitted during a virtual appearance at Indonesia’s B20 summit that “making a much more affordable vehicle would make a lot of sense.” Musk also noted then that Tesla “should do something” about the affordable car segment.
Most recently, the upcoming vehicle platform was seemingly referenced in Tesla’s Q4 and FY 2022 Update Letter, which noted that “our next generation vehicle platform is under development” and that “additional details” about the project would be shared at Tesla’s Investor Day on March 1, 2023, just over a month away.
Despite Elon Musk seemingly sandbagging Tesla’s development of its affordable car over the years, previous reports from countries like China suggest that work on the vehicle has been ongoing for some time. Back in 2021 alone, reports from local media outlets in China suggested that a prototype unit of a Tesla that’s smaller than the Model 3 had already been completed. The vehicle was reportedly designed in Tesla China’s dedicated R&D center in Shanghai.
As per Musk’s comments during the Q3 2022 earnings call, Tesla’s next-gen vehicle platform would likely see more output than the company’s entire existing vehicle lineup combined. The platform will also be designed for efficiency and cost, making it roughly half the cost of the Model 3 and Model Y platform.
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