Tesla Motors said the Model 3 is still on schedule with first deliveries beginning late 2017, but from this week forward, new orders will be filled mid 2018.
To dispel any misunderstandings with customers who’ve placed pre-order deposits and those considering, the automaker announced it wants to clarify timing for the long-anticipated electric car.
“Today’s website update doesn’t reflect any change in our plans,” Tesla said in a statement on its website Tuesday. “We still plan to begin Model 3 deliveries in late 2017, and we adjusted the date on our marketing page to reflect more accurate timing for new/future reservation holders.”
Tesla’s update on the Model 3 came on the eve of another announcement scheduled to be made today. Analysts are speculating about a long list of possible company news, including that it could have something to do with an Autopilot update, a replacement for supplier Mobileye, or launching an entirely new vehicle.
“Possibilities include enhancements to the S/X, energy storage products, or showing of a different class of vehicle,” said Ben Kallo, a Robert W. Baird & Co. analyst.
Tesla has been building anticipation for the Model 3’s rollout. News of the unveiling had been floating around for almost a year before the March 31, 2016 event in Hawthorne, Calif. Enthusiasm was strong enough to bring in about 373,000 pre-orders in May.
General Motors is counting on the Model 3 being the primary competitor for its Chevrolet Bolt all-electric car, and will now have about a year-and-a-half head start.
The Bolt is expected to start deliveries by late 2016.