The first image of Tesla’s next product has been previewed and rumours say it could be the Tesla Model 2, a smaller, hatchback version of the Model 3 — tipped to become the company’s cheapest electric car on the market, setting the market for a shakeup and opening doors for many prospective drivers.
Dubbed the “baby Tesla”, a silhouette of the new model was presented at Tesla’s annual shareholder meeting, with CEO Elon Musk confirming that the new hatchback is “one of the two” products they are working on, the other one speculated to be the Model 3 refresh.
The two new cars “will probably make in excess of five million units a year” of combined production volume, said Musk, indicating a strategic pivot to become a high-volume EV manufacturer.
And facilitating this could be the cheaper starting price of the Model 2, combined with the updated Model 3 — the current lowest-priced Tesla available to buy, which is the company’s most-selling car by quite a wide margin.
Experts from LeaseElectricCar have said that the new hatchback is now set to become Tesla’s entry-level car, estimated at a price point around £25,000, making it by far the cheapest Tesla sold (Model 3 retails at £42,990 in the UK).
They said that Tesla’s rival to other cars in the segment, like the Volkswagen ID.3 and the similarly priced as the Model 2, MG’s MG4, which also named the UK Car of the Year in 2023, could open up EV ownership to a far bigger customer base and convince thousands of motorists to join the electric vehicle revolution.
Model 2’s news comes just days after Tesla cancelled the right-hand-drive versions of the high-end Model S and Model X, citing mechanical and logistical complexities. The company hasn’t scaled the production or sales for the two high-end models as it has for Model 3 and Y — the latter two being manufactured at almost double the rate of Model S and X.
However, with Model 2, Tesla is aiming to set sights worldwide from the get-go. It is expected to go on sale in the UK around 2025, and predicted to offer a range of around 250 miles on a single charge, which measures up well against rivals of a similar size. For comparison, the MG4 has a WLTP range of 281 miles, Vauxhall Corse-e offers 222 miles, and the MINI Electric can go 143 miles on a single charge.
The ID.3, although offers a much higher range of around 340 miles, it also starts at a much higher price point, almost similar to the Model 3, which also has the exact same range as the ID.3.
Tim Alcock from LeaseElectricCar said any new vehicle launch by Tesla was sure to grab the attention of both drivers who have already converted to electric power and motorists who have so far remained loyal to the combustion engine.
He said: “This new baby Tesla will really shake up the market. The launch of a new, compact entry-level Tesla is great news for electric car buyers. For many drivers Tesla is the brand they aspire to own but costs of entry have been high until now.
“We are expecting this new EV to be a compelling option for motorists keen to drive a Tesla but who have so far been put off by the cost. By making the brand accessible at a lower price point we feel thousands more drivers will be joining the ranks of the UK’s growing army of Tesla owners. We expect the new EV to be a huge hit for Tesla.”