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Tesla’s Refreshed Model 3 in China before the United States.

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Tesla’s Refreshed Model 3 in China with Extended Range 

In a groundbreaking move, Tesla, Inc. has officially unveiled an updated version of its popular Model 3 sedan, manufactured in China and boasting an extended driving range. This marks the first instance where Tesla’s Refreshed Model 3 in China before the United States.

vTesla's Refreshed Model 3 in China before the United States.Tesla's Refreshed Model 3 in China before the United States.Tesla's Refreshed Model 3 in China before the United States.

This refreshed Model 3, currently in production at Tesla’s Shanghai facility, comes with a base price that’s 12% higher than its predecessor in the Chinese market. Notably, it’s not exclusive to China; Tesla plans to export this model to various markets across Asia, Europe, and the Middle East.

At the same time, Tesla has implemented substantial price reductions on its premium models, the Model S and Model X, with reductions ranging from approximately 14% to 21%, in both China and the United States, its two largest markets.

Increasing the base price of the Model 3, which stands as Tesla’s best-selling model after the Model Y, could be seen as a strategic move to safeguard profit margins. However, the price cuts for the high-end models reflect the ongoing challenges faced by electric vehicle (EV) manufacturers, particularly in China, where Tesla ignited a price competition with local rivals, including industry leader BYD.

The introduction of this new Model 3 is Tesla’s first update to its mass-market vehicle lineup since the launch of the globally successful Model Y in 2020. While a launch date for the new Model 3 in the U.S. hasn’t been announced, Tesla currently offers discounts exceeding $5,000 on certain inventory vehicles. It’s important to note that the Model 3 is also assembled in Fremont, California.

China-First Debut and Features

Tesla has planned the debut of this latest Model 3 at a trade fair in Beijing, with several features tailored to appeal to Chinese consumers. These features include a rear display for back-seat passengers, an enhanced acoustic system, a more comfortable interior, and additional airbags. Visually, there are subtle exterior changes, giving the sedan a sleeker front and new headlights.

Perhaps most enticingly, the new Model 3 promises an extended driving range. The standard version is reported to have a range of 606 kilometers (377 miles), based on China’s testing standards. This represents a 9% increase compared to the base model it replaces in China.

Tesla is already accepting orders for the new Model 3 and anticipates starting deliveries in China in the fourth quarter. Orders are also being taken in other markets where Tesla exports from Shanghai, including Germany, Japan, Malaysia, Australia, and New Zealand.

Competition and Battery Details

Outside of China, the new Model 3 is expected to perform well, given the relatively less competitive landscape in the EV market. However, within China, the competition is fierce, with numerous new models entering the market, some offering similar or even superior features at lower prices.

Tesla's Refreshed Model 3 in China before the United States.

It’s worth noting that Tesla has been working on this revamped Model 3 under the project codename “Highland,” with the aim of reducing production costs and enhancing the model’s appeal. Although Tesla hasn’t provided specific details about the new Model 3’s battery, insiders suggest it features the same lithium-iron-phosphate battery from CATL for the base model. The improved range is attributed to weight reduction and enhanced aerodynamics, reducing wind resistance.

In China, the Model 3 faces competition from the likes of BYD’s Seal, Geely’s Zeekr 001, Nio’s ET5, and Xpeng’s P7i, with Xpeng even offering zero-interest loans and free upgrades for its car.

Furthermore, Tesla plans to showcase the new Model 3 at the Munich auto show, potentially disrupting the plans of German automakers like Volkswagen and Mercedes, who are expected to unveil a slew of new EVs in response to China’s rapidly evolving EV market.

The new Model 3 has a starting price of 259,900 yuan ($35,807) in China and 42,990 euros ($46,670) in Germany. Tesla aims to begin European deliveries in late October.

(Exchange rates: $1 = 7.2582 Chinese yuan, $1 = 0.9211 euros)

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FAQs – Tesla’s Refreshed Model 3 in China

1. What is the significance of Tesla launching the refreshed Model 3 in China before the United States?

  • This marks the first instance where Tesla has introduced a new model in China ahead of the United States, showcasing the growing importance of the Chinese market for Tesla.

2. Where is the new Model 3 being manufactured?

  • The new Model 3 is being produced at Tesla’s manufacturing facility in Shanghai, China.

3. Is the new Model 3 exclusive to the Chinese market?

  • No, it’s not exclusive to China. Tesla plans to export this updated Model 3 to various markets across Asia, Europe, and the Middle East.

4. How does the price of the new Model 3 compare to the previous model in China?

  • The base price of the new Model 3 in China is 12% higher than the previous model.

5. Has Tesla reduced the prices of any other models?

  • Yes, Tesla has reduced the prices of its premium models, the Model S and Model X, by approximately 14% to 21% in both China and the United States.

6. Why did Tesla raise the base price of the Model 3?

  • Raising the base price of the Model 3 could be a strategic move to protect profit margins for Tesla.

7. What challenges are electric vehicle (EV) manufacturers, including Tesla, facing in China?

  • Tesla and other EV manufacturers are facing intense competition in China, resulting in price wars with local rivals, such as BYD. This competition has put pressure on pricing strategies.

8. What are some of the key features of the new Model 3 aimed at Chinese consumers?

  • The new Model 3 offers features such as a rear display for back-seat passengers, an enhanced acoustic system, a more comfortable interior, additional airbags, and subtle exterior design changes.

9. How does the driving range of the new Model 3 compare to the previous model in China?

  • The new Model 3 promises an extended driving range. The standard version boasts a range of 606 kilometers (377 miles), which is approximately 9% higher than the base model it replaces in China.

10. When will Tesla start taking orders and making deliveries of the new Model 3 in China and other markets?

  • Tesla has already begun taking orders for the new Model 3 and plans to start deliveries in China in the fourth quarter. Orders are also being accepted in other markets, including Germany, Japan, Malaysia, Australia, and New Zealand.

11. What was the code name for Tesla’s project to revamp the Model 3?

  • The project to revamp the Model 3 was code-named “Highland.”

12. What battery does the new Model 3 use, and how does it achieve an extended range?

  • While Tesla hasn’t provided specific details, it’s believed that the new Model 3 uses the same lithium-iron-phosphate battery from CATL for the base model. The extended range is achieved through weight reduction and improved aerodynamics, which reduces wind resistance.

13. How does the new Model 3 fare against competitors in China’s EV market?

  • While it’s expected to perform well outside of China, within China, the competition is intense, with several new models offering similar or better features at competitive prices.

14. Where else will Tesla showcase the new Model 3?

  • Tesla plans to showcase the new Model 3 at the Munich auto show, potentially disrupting the plans of German automakers like Volkswagen and Mercedes, who are also entering the EV market.

15. What are the starting prices for the new Model 3 in China and Germany?

  • In China, the new Model 3 starts at 259,900 yuan ($35,807), while in Germany, it starts at 42,990 euros ($46,670).

16. When is Tesla planning to begin deliveries of the new Model 3 in Europe?

  • Tesla aims to start deliveries of the new Model 3 in Europe in late October.

(Exchange rates: $1 = 7.2582 Chinese yuan, $1 = 0.9211 euros)

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