MODEL Y REVIEW – What To Expect.
From the big promises made by Elon Musk to the excited fans, we can confidently say that the Tesla Model Y has it all. I was fortunate to be at the Model Y unveiling event and I felt like a a kid in a candy store. The Model Y is going to be the 4th vehicle in the lineup of the Californian car maker, and we could, as well, say that it is going to be it’s highest selling vehicle. As we know, Elon Musk has already stated the fact that the Tesla Model Y will sell far more than the Tesla Model 3, as well as, S and X put together. In this review, I outline what you should expect from the Model Y with having had a first hand experience with the vehicle.
The Model Y takes it’s cue from the Model 3
At first, the plans that were set out for the Tesla Model Y happened to be very ambitious. We were set to see a whole new platform just as promised by Elon Musk where certain features would be borrowed such as the wing doors of the Model X. However, the car was to be built on totally new architecture offering flexibility, a much easier building process, and a platform that would be less costly when compared to the Model 3. It seems, however, that Elon Musk had a change of mind along the line.
This time, in order to cut expenditures and conserve time, the architecture of the Model Y borrows a lot from that of the Model 3 — 70% of the Model Y consists of the Model 3 to be exact. Now, it just happens to be a bit taller with is interior space having a wider feel. Its rear doors are a lot mundane with the design looking very familiar. We consider the icing on the cake to be the fact that the Model Y is a seven seater with a third row of seats which extend back into its rear cargo room. While it may prove to be uncomfortable for grown-ups, kids could easily fit into that space. It’s aesthetics are neat and representative of what is currently trending in the automotive industry at the moment.
This time around, the arguments have it that what we see with the Model Y is what was expected of the Model 3. Right now, the demand for Model 3 happens to be impressive, but with the potential that it has, it could have been a lot more impressive if Tesla gave some focus to its smaller SUV category right from the very start. Even Elon Musk admitted on stage at the Model Y unveiling that he believes demand and sales of the Model Y will be greater that all 3 previous models combined. Now that’s a very optimistic outlook but as moonshots go, Elon seems to always be able to get there and back — just look at Space X.
On-road, the Model Y has a familiar feel
For now, prolonged test drives are not permitted by Tesla for the Model Y. And even if you got a chance to ride in the car during the unveiling like I did, you would find professional drivers already seated to take you on a cruise which involved circuiting back-and-forth on the sectioned off road outside the Tesla Design Center with a little bit of twist. That was a bit insufficient in my opinion to form a comprehensive opinion about the Model Y just yet, but it gives just enough reason to come to a particular conclusion which is that the Tesla Model Y is the reincarnation of the Model 3. Although it has been referred to as an Crossover SUV, the car happens to give you a feel that resembles that of its sedan sibling. Of course, the cabin feels a lot different as it comes with a panoramic glass together with seats which are placed a little higher. This crossover remains a lot car-like and comes with familiar dynamics.
If you’re someone like me who loves to drive, then, you’ll be impressed by those dynamics. Then again, as stated earlier, there is not enough experience just yet to reach comprehensive conclusions. But the Model Y is very impressive with its low gravity center, as well as, instantaneous electric torque. Here’s an Instagram Live video I took during one of the first ever Model Y test drives at the Model Y unveiling event.
For starters, the Model Y will begin at $39,000. Earlier, we got a promise from Elon Musk of a car that would be 10% more costly in relation to the Model 3. That is the Model Y which comes in different models and specs variations. $39,000 will get you access to the Standard Range model which is estimated to be able to run up to 230 miles and comes with an mph time of 0 to 60 in about 5.9 seconds.
Just like we saw when the Model 3 was released, the $39,000 Model Y we will not be accessible from the very beginning. However, the Long Range version, the Dual Motor AWD version, as well as, the performance versions will first be put up for sale. What this implies is that, at first, $47,000 could be the price at which the least costly Model Y will be available.
While you can make your reservations for any of those three Model Y versions, customer deliveries will not take place any time soon. Rather, you would have to wait until somewhere around the fall of 2020 which Tesla fans should already be used to by now. In order to lock down your spot in the production timeline, a deposit fee of $2,500 is required.
The Tesla Model Y is a cutting edge revelation
When it comes to performance, the Model Y has a lot to offer. With its Long Range, you can go from 0 to 60 mph within just 5.5 seconds. For the Tesla Dual Motor AWD, you need just 4.8 seconds. For about $60,000, you’ll be able to get its performance model which can take you from zero to 60 mph in just about 3.5 seconds. Then, it gives you a 150 mph top speed with its battery allowing you to drive up to 280 miles and for the Long Range model, that goes up to about 300 miles.
Now, let’s talk about hands-on driving which can only be influenced by the amount of time that you decide to use the autopilot features. With the Tesla Model Y, you get a fusion of lane keeping, as well as, Adaptive Cruise Control which is a headline feature for this car. Well, it comes at a price with the Autopilot option going for $3,000 which goes up to $5,000 if you want the package that comes with a Full Self-Driving Capability.
Regardless of what option you go for or whether you decide not to go for it at all, the Tesla Model Y dashboard happens to drift from the regular appearance of most crossover cabins. Like the Model 3, the Model Y is also equipped with a 15 inch touchscreen. From this touchscreen, you’ll be able to control everything from infotainment and autopilot to things like HVAC and more…just like the Model 3, S and X before it. With the ability to also make over the air software updates, the Tesla Model Y owners can rest assured that nothing was left out in the Tesla experience.
What the market thinks
At the launch event, the fans of Tesla that were present happened to be very much elated with the unveiling of Tesla’s Model Y. I should know because I was one of them. However, the market happens to not feel exactly the same way as Tesla recorded the 5% drop in its shares soon after the unveiling. It happens that investors seem a little bit skeptical about this new EV and there is a feeling that the Model Y doesn’t have that special touch as many had expected. All the same, we can confidently say that the Model Y is an EV to look forward to and I for one look forward to seeing them on the streets of Southern California.
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