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Tesla Model 3 will start at $35,000, to be unveiled in March

The company confirms the Tesla Model 3 will start at $35,000 before incentives, and there's some math in play that could make it cheaper for residents in some states.
Written by Jake Smith, Contributor on
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Tesla plans to unveil its Model 3 all-electric vehicle next month and have it on sale by mid-2017. The company confirmed in a statement to Bloomberg on Tuesday the starting price will be $35,000, but tax incentives in some states could lead to a price much lower.

At $35,000, Tesla will have the ability to go after the all-new, all-electric 2017 Chevy Bolt unveiled in January and set to debut in late 2016 for $37,500.

What customers will pay depends on whether one's tax situation enables federal credit eligibility and the place of residence for purchase, regarding potential state perks.

On the extreme end, a Colorodan could purchase a Model 3 for $21,500.

In its home state and biggest domestic market, California, a $2,500 state subsidy plus the $7,500 federal tax credit led Bloomberg to shout in a headline "Electric Fantasy: Will the Next Tesla Sell for $25,000?"

It will under a few assumptions. One assumption is Tesla does not run out of federal tax eligibility before the Model 3 is for sale or very many are sold, which is possible by 2018 unless an extension is granted.

Another assumption is the $35,000 does not include a $1,200 delivery fee which Tesla charges for its Model X and Model S, but conspicuously omitted mention of when it gave quotes to Bloomberg.

"We can confirm it's $35,000 before incentives," a Tesla spokeswoman, Khobi Brooklyn, told Bloomberg. "We haven't change our minds."

Brooklyn's statement echoes comments from Tesla chief Elon Musk made a year ago.

"When I say $35,000, I'm talking about without any credits," he said.

Don't bother looking for picture of the car though, because those are due next month, the company confirmed.

Questions remain about how many options and how far the battery will take the base Model 3. Musk has confirmed in the past this will be Tesla's car for the masses. Even at the $35,000 before incentives, the Model 3 will be much cheaper than the Model S that runs between $76,000 to $82,000.

"The Tesla Model 3 is on time, and everyone is going to learn more about it at the end of March," Brooklyn said. "That's when we've committed to talking about it and giving a really great update, and that's what we're going to do."

The comments come after Tesla's stock price has dropped 28.77 percent in the last month.

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