Tesla will unveil its Model Y crossover SUV on March 14th during an event at the company’s design studio in Los Angeles, CEO Elon Musk announced Sunday. The new electric car will be Tesla’s fifth since the company was founded in 2003.
The Model Y will share about 75 percent of its parts with the Model 3, which is currently Tesla’s most affordable car. Musk said the Model Y will be about 10 percent bigger, cost about 10 percent more, and will have slightly less range than the Model 3. The Model Y won’t have the “Falcon Wing” doors that are found on Tesla’s bigger SUV, the Model X. (Musk had previously hinted that it might.)
More details on specs and pricing will be revealed at the event, according to Musk, and Tesla will offer test rides, meaning the company likely has a few pre-production prototypes already finished. Musk also said on Sunday that Tesla will unveil its electric pickup truck “later this year.”
Tesla will build the Model Y at the company’s Gigafactory outside Reno, Nevada, and the vehicle is supposed to enter volume production in 2020. Tesla also eventually plans to make Model Ys at the Gigafactory it’s building in Shanghai, China.
Musk’s announcement comes just three days after Tesla finally made the long-promised $35,000 Model 3 available to purchase. The company also announced last week that it is transitioning to an online-only sales model going forward, is closing “many” of its stores around the world, and is laying off an undisclosed number of workers.
Tesla has only shown one teaser image of the Model Y to this point: a simple black-and-white silhouette. But the company’s been talking about the car for years. In 2015, Musk tweeted the name of the Model Y before quickly deleting the tweet. He also went back and forth on whether the compact SUV would be built on the same technological platform as the Model 3, before ultimately deciding to share technology between the cars in order to be able to bring the Model Y to market on time. Musk said Tesla signed off on the final design late last year.
Musk had previously joked that the Model Y would be unveiled on March 15th “because the Ides of March sounded good.” A few Chinese media outlets had speculated earlier this month that Tesla might wait to reveal the car at April’s Shanghai Auto Show.
Model Y, being an SUV, is about 10% bigger than Model 3, so will cost about 10% more & have slightly less range for same battery
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 3, 2019
Musk also tweeted Sunday that the third version of its “Supercharger” electric car charging stations will be revealed this coming week. The first public station will go live at 8PM PT on Wednesday, March 6th, though he didn’t reveal the location.
Version 3 of Tesla’s Supercharger is supposed to be able to charge cars at a rate of 350kW or more, according to previous tweets from Musk. That would help the company keep pace with some budding competition in the space. Porsche has said it will build 350kW chargers for its much-anticipated lineup of electric sports cars, and Volkswagen has already begun building a network of charging stations under the Electrify America brand that can charge between 150kW and 350kW. Tesla’s current Superchargers have a max rate of 145kW, and its cars can only accept up to 120kW.