Tesla's $35,000 Model 3 is only available as a special order

Tesla Model 3 Standard Range dropped from online configurator

It means the $35,000 Standard Model 3 will now be sold as a software-limited version of the Standard Plus. Tesla said the option to lease a Model 3 is now open to USA customers with a small down payment and competitive monthly payments.

Tesla, in a blog post Thursday, announced it was raising the price of the Model 3 Standard Plus from $37,500 to $39,500. Annual mileage options include 10,000, 12,000, or 15,000 miles for the lease term.

Lessees interested in a dual-motor Long Range Model 3 can easily find themselves with a $700 per month lease payment. (The Model S and Model X can both be leased for 24 months, too.) For all three cars, there's a $695 acquisition fee, and the first month's payment is due when you pick up the vehicle. However if you plan to lease a Tesla take note that you will NOT have the option to purchase your vehicle at the end of the lease.

What just happened? Tesla said that since introducing the Standard and Standard Plus editions last quarter, the premium model has outsold the Standard more than six to one. The same goes for the Model 3 Long Range in rear-wheel-drive configuration. Tesla says it plans to use Model 3s returned from leases in its new planned self-driving ride haling network, which may indicate that the service could start in three years or less. Customers who want this version from now on won't be able to get it from Tesla's online ordering menu. Customers won't have the option to buy the auto at the end of the lease because the company plans to use the vehicles in a forthcoming Tesla ride-hailing network, according to the blog post.


"Given the popularity of the Standard Plus relative to the Standard, we have made the decision to simplify our production operations to better optimize cost, minimize complexity and streamline operations", Tesla says. Buyers do have the option to unlock those features at a later date, though, essentially upgrading the auto from Standard Range to Standard Range Plus.

What Tesla failed to mention was that the Standard Range Plus was now open for ordering in several new markets in Europe and China.

The sedans will also be delivered with the higher capacity battery pack of the Standard Range Plus model, but with a software restriction that limits their range from 240 to 220 miles.

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