Tesla Motors’ next anticipated mass-market electric vehicle, the Tesla Model E, won’t be around until at least 2017, but we get snippets of details every now and then from CEO Elon Musk.
How we wish that the Tesla Model E was here, right now, because it would solve some huge problems in the transportation industry. Of course, that’s probably why the first electric vehicles failed, because they were ahead of their time. Now that Tesla Motors has resurrected the idea, there seems to be no stopping it.
Still, production will have to wait, because the Tesla Model E is going to be slightly different from its predecessors, the Tesla Model S and Model X. Both of these are, unarguably, premium electric vehicles with a premium price, but the Tesla Model E is expected to start at around $35,000, where a small-to-midsize sedan ought to be priced. Will Tesla Motors be able to pull off such a price cut?
Given that lithium-ion battery technology is still fairly expensive, getting the Tesla Model E down to $35,000 is going to require a delicate balance of battery supply, mass-production, and size reductions. In the video, we learned that the Tesla Model E ought to be around 20% smaller than the Model S, both in overall size, but in battery weight, as well. A 48 kWh lithium-ion battery pack could easily deliver 200 miles per charge in a 20%-smaller vehicle. Following the economics of mass-production, as well as the addition of the Tesla Giga-Factory, it seems possible that Tesla Motors could bring prices down enough to make a viable mass-market electric vehicle