Tesla has unexpectedly announced a third version of the Model 3 fitted with a rear drive motor and a ‘mid range’ battery. With a purchase price of $45,000, the new version has a 260 mile (418 km) range (US cycle), which is 50 km short of the existing long range version.
The smaller capacity battery uses a long range battery packet with fewer cells, as opposed to the larger pack limited by software. The new mid range version, which is only to be available in North American for now, now the only version to be offered with rear wheel drive. All variants of the longer range version are all-wheel drive.
While it might appear that the mid range option will replace the originally announced basic $35,000 edition of the Model 3 which has yet to see the light of any showroom, the new announcement has no bearing on the schedule for the other version which should be available by the end of Q1 next year.
Tesla also updated the price for the AWD Model 3 at $54,000.