Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus Orders Open In Europe, China

Tesla Model 3. Matthew DeBord  BI

On Twitter, Musk recently confirmed that the objective of the cameras built in above the rear-view mirror of the Model 3 is to record video when owners put their auto on Tesla's future network, which he said would compete with Uber and Lyft. Yes, these are the same stores that the EV company announced it was scaling back when it first started selling the low-priced Model 3. Deliveries of the entry-level models start this weekend - more than six weeks after the company starting taking orders. Monthly payments vary from a little over $500 for the Model 3 Standard Range Plus to $889 for the Model 3 Performance.

The electric auto maker has removed the $35,000 Model 3 from its website for buyers to order and announced the Standard Range is now a "software-limited" variant of the Standard Plus.

Apparently addressing controversy over Autopilot price cuts, Tesla has chose to simply bundle the feature as a standard safety feature across its entire lineup.

The effective base price of a Model 3 ordered online is now $40,700.

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Further changes include the fitment of the Autopilot package as standard equipment, though the changes see the price of the Model 3 Standard Plus rise by US$2000 to US$39,500 ($55,365.18) - previously the Autopilot option came at a $3000 premium. Now, the vehicle will cost $39,500, effectively making Autopilot a $2,000 premium built into the price. The lease runs for 36 months, and lessees can choose from three annual mileage allotments - 10,000, 12,000 or 15,000 miles per year.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk explained the reason for the Model 3's mysterious cockpit camera.

It's important to highlight that "customers who choose leasing over owning will not have the option to purchase their vehicle at the end of the lease".

A software-limited Standard Plus means the range is reduced by 10 percent and onboard music streaming service, navigation with live traffic visualization, and heated seats features are disabled. Ordering one requires a call or visit to a Tesla store. Interestingly, Tesla said lease customers won't get the option to buy back their vehicles at the end of the term, because "with full autonomy coming in the future via an over-their-air software update, we plan to use those vehicles in the Tesla ride-hailing network", Tesla wrote.

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