Posted on February 08, 2019 by Iqtidar Ali
Tesla is now offering a Rear-Wheel Drive (RWD) Model 3 variant in China that is significantly cheaper than the Dual-Motor and Performance versions of the vehicle.
Above: Unveiling the Tesla Model 3 in China (Instagram: aprilyyuen)
The decision for offering a more affordable version of the Tesla Model 3 came after almost a month of opening up the ordering process to the general public. This decision is likely the result of Tesla China realizing they'll be able to further penetrate the market by granting cheaper options to the public.
Above: Tesla Model 3 shows up at the Shenzhen Auto Show along with its siblings, Model X and S (Instagram: aprilyyuen)
The base price for the Chinese Model 3 RWD is set to ¥433,000 ($64,300) which is ¥66,000 ($9,800) cheaper than the non-Performance Dual-Motor option available. Clearly, the ~$10,000 difference could be an attractive incentive-to-buy for many Chinese customers.
Above: Tesla Model 3 Rear Wheel Drive offered in China with 600+ km range (Image: X Auto via Tesla)
Also, by looking at the Chinese online Model 3 configurator (screenshot above), we can see the range displayed is 600+ km (~372 miles), which seems odd as the largest battery pack available in the United States offers ~310 miles (~500 km) of range. However, this calculation could (potentially) be based on a different range testing method in China.
Above: Model 3 draws a crowd at a Tesla store in China (Instagram: aprilyyuen)
Tesla Model 3 test drives are also now available at select Tesla Stores in China since some Model 3 Performance vehicles reached the country's shores just recently. Reported by our friend JayinShanghai, February 1st was the last day of test drives offered at the Jinqiao Tesla Store in Shanghai.
Above: A look at the Tesla Model 3's new aero wheels being offered to Chinese customers (Youtube: JayinShanghai)
Another active member of the Chinese Tesla community 小特叔叔 (@xiaoteshushu) got a Model 3 Performance for a two week trip from Guangzhou to his home town Zhangjiajie (around 1,000 km each side of the trip). He sent us a stunning photo from inside his Tesla Model 3 looking out at the Guangzhou cityscape at night.
Above: The First Model 3 Performance in Guangzhou, China. (Photo Credits: 小特叔叔 )
Tesla's Gigafactory 3 in Shanghai is also on a fast track of construction and development, according to the latest reports and drone footage — the Chinese Gigafactory will be supplying the local market with the most affordable base variants of Tesla Model 3 and Model Y, according to Elon Musk.
Above: Tesla Model 3 hits the road in China (Instagram: aprilyyuen)
Tesla Gigafactory 3 is expected to ramp into full production by next year — until then Chinese Tesla customers will have these upper trims of the Model 3 available to them for purchase.
Above: A close-up of the aero wheels being offered in China (Twitter: JayinShanghai)
Hopefully, we'll have more photos, videos and updates for you from these test drives, so stay tuned!