The only automaker with both its headquarters and main assembly facility located in the heart of Silicon Valley, Tesla Motors [NASDAQ:TSLA] not only produces the world’s fastest and longest-range production electric vehicles but also does so with a unique attitude to vehicle production that’s unlike the traditional ways of Detroit.
Unlike traditional automakers, which follow strict development cycles where new features are introduced every few years and new models every five or six years, Tesla follows a more agile development cycle in which new features are rolled out when they’re ready for customers to use. At the same time, following a methodology those in the software industry will recognize as ‘Scrum‘, Tesla’s team of engineers and executives are always on the lookout to improve their output while simultaneously innovating new ways of offering customers more for less.
And today Tesla announced the Tesla Model X 60D, a new entry-level version of Tesla’s flagship car that we suspect is a product of that very same software-driven design philosophy.
Like the Tesla Model S 60 and Tesla Model S 60D that were released last month, the new entry-level Tesla Model X 60D actually features a 75 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack, but rather than grant access to the full capacity of the battery pack, the Model X 60D has a software lockout on its battery management system to ensure that only 60 kWh can be accessed by the owner, giving it a Tesla-estimated estimated range of around 200 miles per charge.
In exchange for that software-limited battery pack, customers will be able to pick up the new entry-level Model X 60D for just $75,200 before incentives and including mandatory shipping and handling fees. While that’s still far more than many car buyers can afford, it’s certainly cheaper than the $84,200 of the Tesla Model X 75D, the previous entry-level Model X.
In keeping with its policy of offering customers a chance to derestrict the software-limited battery pack of their entry-level cars, we expect Tesla will offer Model X 60D customers the chance to unlock the full potential of their car’s 75 kilowatt-hour battery pack.
Sadly, details have yet to be released for such an upgrade, but given that the price difference between a brand-new Tesla Model X 60D and Tesla Model X 75D is $9,000 before any additional packages are added, we’d guess if it does, Tesla will charge customers between $5,000 and $7000 to unlock the full potential of their Model X 60D’s battery pack. As our friends over at Autobloggreen were told yesterday, the price for that upgrade will be $9,600 after purchase.
While Tesla fans will no doubt be pleased that there’s a new entry-level Model X on the market that’s significantly more affordable than the previous entry-level model, it’s worth noting too that reducing the price point for the Model X does two more things. Firstly, it opens up the Tesla Model X to a whole new group of consumers and secondly, it makes the Model X a little more competitive against both rival plug-in hybrid SUVs and traditional luxury SUVs.
Here at Transport Evolved, we’re welcoming of this new affordable Model X, but it’s worth reminding readers that while the Model X can now technically be purchased for just $75,200 before incentives, that figure is for the absolute entry-level model, without Autopilot, HEPA Bioweapon Defence Mode, premium sound system or any of the other add on items that most Tesla customers tick as a matter of course.
Those interested in ordering a Tesla Model X 60D will be pleased to know that Tesla is accepting orders for the budget-priced variant from today, with deliveries not due to start until the fall.
What do you make of the new entry-level Model X? Are you tempted to order one now it’s possible to buy one for less? Or do you think that 200-miles of expected EPA range is just not far enough for your needs?
Leave your thoughts in the Comments below.
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