Tesla is finally taking orders for Model 3 cars which are manufactured in its Shanghai Gigafactory. The locally made cars will hit the market with a substantial price drop for Chinese customers, making the Tesla Model 3 in China more accessible for drivers in that country.
Prices For Tesla Model 3 In China
The Model 3s which will be manufactured in China are expected to be the Standard Plus versions, with a range of 286 miles (460 km). Bloomberg says that the China-exclusive cars will start at a base price of 328,000 yuan ($47,510), which is 13 percent off of the current U.S. import price of 377,000 yuan ($54,616). It is still more expensive than the one which U.S. buyers can purchase, but the price drop should encourage more sales of Tesla products in China.
Preorders are now available on Tesla’s Chinese website for 20,000 yuan (≈$3,000). The website states that deliveries should be expected within 6 to 10 months.
China Key to Tesla Strategy
While some analysts fear that Tesla’s influence may be waning in the U.S., others believe that the Chinese market will be key to future profitability for the automaker. Currently, China is the world’s largest auto market. While the demand for electric cars in China is high, the fact that the cars would be cheaper to produce in China is also a factor.
“Learning from our experience, we can now build a second-generation Model 3 line in China that we expect will be at least 50% cheaper per unit of capacity than our Model 3-related lines in Fremont and at Gigafactory 1,” Tesla CEO Elon Musk shared in a recent quarterly update letter.
All Tesla vehicles sold currently in China have to be shipped from the U.S. This means that they are subject to import duties and ineligible for government subsidies. Building them locally means that Tesla can avoid these issues as well as decrease shipping costs and time since they will no longer have to transport them over the ocean.
Increasing International Presence
And Tesla is not just stopping with China. They also recently announced that potential customers are now able to preorder the Model 3 in other international markets.
Prices and options will vary depending on the region, of course. Tesla’s website predicts that deliveries for Ireland could start as soon as July, while Australia and New Zealand could start seeing their Model 3s in August. As to the other countries? Tesla is a bit more vague there, stating that deliveries may start happening sometime in the third quarter.
Here’s hoping that this is just the first step in increasing Tesla’s global influence.