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Tesla Model 3 Debut – First Tesla Model 3

The Tesla Model 3 is finally here. More than a year after Elon Musk debuted the 3 at Tesla’s California headquarters, the CEO took to Twitter late last night to confirm that the first is about to roll off the line this coming Friday.

Model 3 passed all regulatory requirements for production two weeks ahead of schedule. Expecting to complete SN1 on Friday

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 3, 2017

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Handover party for first 30 customer Model 3’s on the 28th! Production grows exponentially, so Aug should be 100 cars and Sept above 1500.

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 3, 2017

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Whereas the existing Model S sedan and Model X crossover have been status symbols for the well-heeled, the 3 is Musk’s attempt an a Tesla for the masses. It’s supposed to start at a sticker price of $35,000 (before government EV tax credits) and make 215 miles of range.

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As you can see from Musk’s updates, production ramps up slowly at first. But in a subsequent tweet, Musk said Tesla should be able make 20,000 Model 3s per month starting in December. At that rate, however, it’s going to take a long time to meet demand. Hundreds of thousands of people got on the waiting list for the 3 when Tesla let them put down thousand-dollar deposits back in March 2016.

As NPR puts it:

One of the more formidable challenges Tesla faces will be scaling up production. Musk set a goal of producing 500,000 vehicles a year in 2018, or more than 40,000 per month. For scale, that is about 15,000 more than it produced in the entire first quarter of this year.

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