When it comes to the current crop of electric vehicles available in the U.S. auto market, none is as popular or as highly decorated at the Tesla Model S. The car earned a 99% review score from Consumer Reports and in its most potent form, the P85D is capable of reaching 60 mph in just three seconds thanks to “Insane Mode.” However, the Model S is a vehicle that starts at $75,000 and can quickly surpass the $100,000 mark when opting for the P85D trim.
So what about the rest of us? After all, the average transaction price for a new vehicle in the U.S. during the month of May was a more sedate $33,560. Luckily, Tesla has an answer in the form of the upcoming Model III, which will start at $35,000 before tax incentives. Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk has previously stated that the vehicle will have a driving range of 200+ miles per charge, but recent comments made at the Edison Electric Institute indicate that buyers will get a lot more than just 200 miles. In fact, Musk says that the Model III will be good for at least 250 miles per charge. Oh Yeah!
Tesla Model S
Keep in mind that the larger, $75,000 Model S 70D is “only” rated at 240 miles with its 70 kWh battery pack. But we also have to realize that the 70D is a vehicle that weighs in at a whopping 4,647 pounds, making it as heavy (if not heavier) than many mid-size crossovers on the market. The smaller Model III is likely to weigh far less, which would allow it to surpass the 70D’s range while using a smaller (and cheaper) lithium-ion battery pack.
A 250-mile range would also give the Model III a leg up on upcoming competition from the likes of General Motors. Chevrolet will release its 200-mile range Bolt EV around the same time that the Model III will be hitting U.S. streets. The Bolt will reportedly cost $37,500 before a $7,500 federal tax credit (and any applicable state credits/rebates).
Chevrolet's Bolt EV will be priced at $30,000 after a federal tax credit is taken into consideration
Although we have no clue what the Model III will look like, we’re fairly certain that it won’t be hard to look better than the economy car looks of the Chevy Bolt.