Tesla Motors’ Model 3 electric sedan may be geared for mass-market affordability, but CEO Elon Musk made it clear at tonight’s unveiling that he doesn’t intend it to be a third-rate car.
“It will be five-star in every category,” Musk told a standing-room-only, occasionally raucous crowd at Tesla’s warehouse-sized design studio at Hawthorne, Calif.
The $35,000 Model 3’s promised capabilities were arguably the biggest surprise of the evening: Musk said the scaled-down sedan would still have ample room for five people, thanks to a design that moves the instrument panel farther forward than the panel in the $70,000 Model S.
Even the base model will go from zero to 60 mph in less than 6 seconds, Musk said. And the driving range will be at least 215 miles on a charge.
“These are minimum numbers,” Musk said. “We hope to exceed them.”