Tesla has finally taken electric vehicles mainstream with its recently unveiled Model 3. The EV maker said in a blog post Thursday that its mass market car had received 325,000 reservations in just one week. Even before Elon Musk unveiled the car last Thursday, eager fans had lined up in front of Tesla stores to pre-order Model 3. The first week pre-orders now correspond to $14 billion in implied future sales, making it “the single biggest one-week launch of any product ever.”
Is Tesla testing Model 3 in public?
In the last few days, YouTuber Tesla Motors Fans has spotted several units of Model 3 driving around in public. The video below shows Model 3s parked at Tesla’s Supercharging station and driving around in public. The initial shots in the video are images. The rolling shots begin at close to 1:00 mark. Priced at $35,000, the entry-level Model 3 offers a range of 215 miles. Tesla is working to increase the range further by the time the vehicle hits the roads in late 2017.
The first week pre-order numbers are roughly three times higher than the company had expected. Tesla has fetched $325 million on Model 3 deposits alone. And all the reservations came without any advertisements or “paid endorsements.” Tesla says the car is still under development. Many more features are likely to be added before the Part-2 of the unveiling.
The next challenge before Tesla
While the pre-orders speak volumes about the popularity of Tesla, it also raises concerns about the company’s ability to meet the complex production goals. Only time will tell if the EV maker would be able to ramp up production to meet the sky-high demand. Tesla said a few days ago it was able to ship only 2,400 units of Model X last quarter.
Interacting with his fans on Twitter, Elon Musk said the interiors of Model 3 showed off last week were not part of the final design. The company is redesigning the interior to make it feel “like a spaceship.” The car’s front facia will also be tweaked to make it look even more cool. It will be available with rear-wheel drive. Tesla will also offer an all-wheel drive version at a higher price.