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Tesla is set to open orders for its locally made entry-level Model 3 in China tomorrow; though, we still don’t know how much the car will cost. Tesla has been teasing potential buyers in China all week with rumors of special announcements and price-guessing games.
The end-version, imported from the US version of the Model 3 is already available in China. Tesla confirmed the Model 3 sale date by making an announcement on its official Weibo page with an image of a Tesla Model 3 facing the nearly complete factory shell of Gigafactory 3.
Tesla proud of Chinese history
The post also included a brief history of the company's presence in China. The post reads: “In 2008, Tesla’s first electric car, the Roadster, was officially released. Its record-breaking acceleration, performance, cruising range, and driving performance proved to the world that electric vehicles could be superior to traditional internal combustion engines.
“In 2012, Tesla launched the Model S, a pure electric luxury sedan, with its 17” touchscreen becoming an industry-leading design. In addition, the elegant shape and performance of the Model S completely overturned the expectations of the 21st-century car."
"In 2015, Model X landed on the market with an uncompromising attitude, perfecting a high-performance, safe, and intelligent SUV, and it was awarded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) with a 5-Star Safety Rating."
“In 2017, the more intimate Model 3 impressed countless consumers with its future-oriented design and excellent driving, and it became the US luxury car champion in 2018. May 31, 2019 – Made in China Model 3 will open soon. Expecting to meet you.”
Guess the price
The price guessing game asked participants to decode the price of the locally made- Model three using number hints from a set of numbers. (460, 225, 5.6, 3, 2, 8, 0, 27800 and 56000). A Bloomberg report suggested the final price will be between 300,000 RMB ($43,400) and 350,000 yuan ($50,600) before subsidies.
Tesla’s manufacturing facilities in Shanghai are not ready yet. The plan to open orders is ambitious and may see orders of the imported version of the car decline, as well as start another ‘production hell’ period for the company.
Optimistic reports suggest the Chinese Gigafactory could be ready to produce cars as early as September, while other more conservative reports think it will be much closer to the end of the year. China has a range of Tesla competitors.
If the Shanghai-made version of the Model 3 goes on sale for about 300,000 RMB it will be significantly more expensive than popular and locally made electric vehicle models such as the BYD Song, which has a starting price of 190,000 RMB (~$28,000), and the Xiaopeng G3, which starts at 160,000 RMB (~$23,000).
But, at the same time, much cheaper than the Tesla options are available in China currently such as the Standard Plus RWD version, which currently starts at 377,000 RMB (~$54,500).