tesla concept

Tesla drops new details on its next vehicle platform


Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the automaker’s next vehicle platform will exceed Model 3 and Model Y production output, be roughly half the cost of the Model 3 and Model Y platforms, and be smaller in size.

Musk and other Tesla executives were asked about any potential developments from the next generation of Tesla vehicles. The question mentioned the dramatic drop in cost from the Model S and Model X platform to the Model 3 and Model Y platform. The Model 3 and Model Y brought Tesla’s electric vehicles to levels of mass affordability, which truly sparked the beginning of the transition to electric vehicles.

The Model 3 and Model Y are Tesla’s best-selling vehicles, accounting for 95 percent of the company’s total delivery mix for Q3, according to data from the automaker.

The retail investor asked whether Tesla’s third platform has an expected release date, along with what the company expected in terms of the total reduction in cost.

Earlier in the call, Tesla’s executives fielding questions during the Q3 Earnings Call scoffed at the idea of revealing development timelines for future vehicles and plans of the vehicle roadmap. Musk said the company was always moving forward with developments but was unwilling to give any specific details.

However, more color was offered from the Tesla CEO when he was asked about the company’s third vehicle platform.

It will exceed Tesla Model 3 and Model Y production output

tesla model y production

Tesla Model Y production at Gigafactory Texas (Credit: Tesla)

Musk said the third-generation Tesla vehicle would be produced in quantities that outshine the Model 3 and Model Y. In fact, it would outpace manufacturing of all other Tesla vehicles combined.

This may be due to the vehicle’s size, which we’ll get to later. However, it is a true testament to Musk’s belief in Tesla’s manufacturing. With the utilization of one-piece castings, the Giga Press, and other manufacturing techniques, Tesla truly outshines many companies in terms of manufacturing efficiency. However, the company has still struggled with the build quality of its cars, which has been an issue for several years.

“Tesla will be head and shoulders above everyone else in manufacturing, that is our goal.” -Elon Musk

Tesla’s current annual production capacity is listed at roughly 1.9 million units. This figure is reflected in the Q3 2022 Shareholder Deck, which was released on October 19.

It will be roughly half the cost of the Tesla Model 3 and Model Y platform

Tesla’s goals reflected in Elon Musk’s Master Plan revealed a trickle-down pricing strategy that would ultimately see premium-priced vehicles fund projects for more affordable cars down the line. The 2008 Roadster led to the Model S and Model X, which led to the Model 3 and Model Y.

Each vehicle chapter became more affordable, helping surge the adoption of electric vehicles. Musk confirmed the next vehicle platform will be roughly half the cost of the Model 3 and Model Y, bringing up flashbacks of the rumored $25,000 Tesla.

tesla model 3

Elon Musk unveiling the Model 3 in March 2016

Musk neither confirmed nor denied that Tesla was developing a $25,000 model during the Q4 and Full Year 2021 Earnings Call in January. However, he did confirm on the Q3 call that the next vehicle platform is “the primary focus of the vehicle development team.”

The next vehicle is also fully expected to be used as the fully autonomous Robotaxi, which is still a few years away. However, the vehicle is not likely to come within the two years, as Tesla is turning its focus to ramping Cybertruck manufacturing and Semi production, which it targets to be 50,000 by 2024.

It will be Tesla’s smallest vehicle

Musk said that the new vehicle platform would also be smaller in size, as it would also help cut the total cost of the vehicle.

However, projections of what the $25,000 model would look like are usually smaller and more compact than the Model 3.

tesla $25k model

Credit: Alwinart/Twitter

While these are not officially Tesla designs, what is illustrated above is likely a similar size to what the company will bring to the table for the $25,000 model. The cost reduction can start at the dimensions of the vehicle overall, which will cut costs significantly. However, the real reduction comes from developing new batteries and the scaling of production. Musk also detailed on the Q3 Earnings Call that he still sees a path to a potential $70 per kWh cell, which is 30 percent less expensive than the projected “price parity” number, which lies at $100 per kWh. This, in theory, would bring EVs to the same cost as gas cars.

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Tesla drops new details on its next vehicle platform
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