Tesla now taking orders in Europe, will start delivering Model 3 to China in March
8 January 2019 - Autoblog
Sales in China have been affected by trade tensions
Tesla has opened up its Model 3 design studio to shoppers in Europe who live in left-hand-drive countries. The automaker first opened the design studio to European buyers who had plunked down a $1,000 reservation fee back in December, but it's now open to anyone.
Currently, only the Long Range Battery and Performance versions of Model 3 are available for order in Europe, and pricing varies by region. According to Engadget, the Long Range Model 3 costs €53,500 (US$61,000) in France and €59,600 (US$68,000) in Italy. By way of comparison, at the time of writing a similar Model 3 in the United States goes for as low as $51,000 before any tax savings are factored in.
Tesla also said on Friday it plans to start delivering Model 3 cars to customers in China in March, cementing a time frame that the U.S. electric vehicle (EV) maker's chief executive, Elon Musk, tweeted about late last year.
The California-based firm, which aims to accelerate Chinese sales that have been hit hard by the impact of trade tension between Washington and Beijing, said in a statement the starting price for a Model 3 in China would be 499,000 yuan ($72,000).
Tesla cut prices for its Model 3 last month, the third time in the last two months for the firm to adjust prices in China. In November, Tesla cut the prices of its Model X and Model S in China by 12 to 26 percent.
Tesla has opened a tender process to build a $2 billion plant in Shanghai — dubbed a Gigafactory — and at least one contractor has started buying materials, Reuters reported earlier last month.
The automaker has said it aims to initially produce about 3,000 Model 3 vehicles per week at the plant and localize its manufacturing and supply chain.
The factory, Tesla's first in China, marks a major bet by the EV maker as it looks to bolster its presence in the world's biggest auto market where it faces rising competition from a swathe of domestic rivals, while its earnings have been hit by increased tariffs on U.S. imports.