None of the 30 analysts who cover Tesla cut their price targets or recommendations for the shares, but the slightly bleak response to the new launch underlines the ambivalence of some on Wall Street to the company after months of legal wrangling and social media outbursts by Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk.
Musk unveiled the vehicle at a 40-minute event at Tesla's design studio in Hawthorne, outside Los Angeles, that was streamed live online.
Still, the Model Y, like all Tesla models, has already seen pre-production delays. Model Y, leveraging Model 3 technology, is a mid-size SUV that will start, according to Tesla, at $39,000 for the Standard Range version, and will also come in Long Range, Dual-Motor All-Wheel Drive, and Performance variants.
Musk maintains, "Solar plus battery plus electric vehicles is a sustainable future you can be excited about".
In the lead up to the unveiling, Musk said that due to the increased amount of materials needed for the Model Y's SUV body, both weight and price would be approximately 10 per cent more than the Model 3. Keyless entry will allow you to unlock the auto with a mobile app, and the car's infotainment system is controlled via a single 15-inch touchscreen on the dash. It receives a higher roofline and third row seats taking interior capacity upto 7. Bit of a surprise that one, definite oohs and aahs from the crowd when Musk confirmed it.
Tesla officially unveils the Model Y
"We've made 550,000 vehicles, something like that", he said. Instead, the lowest priced version of the Model 3 had been selling for $43,000 until a couple weeks ago when Tesla reached the promised price point by laying off thousands of workers and imposing other cost-cutting measures. The Model Y Dual Motor ($51,000) ups the range to 280 miles, and drops the 0-60 time to 4.8 seconds.
Customers will have to wait until at least 2021 to own one of the five-seat SUVs. The 0-60 time is on par with supercars at 3.5 seconds and the top speed raises to 150mph. With its extra get-up-and-go the Performance model will offer "only" 280 miles of range. The Model Y is a compact crossover that is largely based on the preceding Model 3 sedan.
Tesla said production will begin late next year with the standard edition expected to roll off the assembly line in early 2021. Musk confirmed existing supercharger stations will be upgraded to the V3.0 standard, and new stations installed, starting from later this year.
And when the Model Y finally did appear, it was instantly clear that it is the result of Tesla's near-permanent "production hell": barely distinguishable from the Model 3, Tesla's new crossover is the most lukewarm and evolutionary new product it has ever introduced. The mass-market vehicle will have a base price of $39,000 and a 230-mile battery range. More importantly, it gives us a good glimpse of what Tesla expects to have completed less than a year after its January 6 ground breaking event.