Elon Musk has mentioned a $25,000 Tesla vehicle on many occasions. Just after the Tesla Model 3 production hell, Elon thought that the technology to manufacture the cheaper model will be ready around 2022–2023. It’s one thing to build a vehicle like the SGMW Wuling Mini EV for under $5,000 in China or the Dacia Spring for €17,000 in Europe. A Tesla, on the other hand, must conform to Tesla specifications.
- Must be safest vehicle in its class.
- Teslas are never slow.
- Teslas are a joy to drive.
- Teslas are beautiful, at least in the eyes of Elon Musk.
- Teslas have enough range.
Elon has also stated that localized versions for China and Europe will be available. Many Tesla enthusiasts believe that the $25,000 model and the localized models would be identical versions of the same car. We’ve also agreed it’ll be known as the Tesla Model 2.
The Nissan Sylphy and Volkswagen Bora are competitors for the China edition. The Volkswagen Golf and ID.# are the main competitors for the European model. In the $20,000 to $30,000 market, a model in the United States would outperform the best-selling Toyota and Honda models.
There are three automobiles that are very different from one another. However, they are similar in terms of size, price, comfort, and efficiency. For the past year or more, we haven’t heard anything from the Tesla design center in Los Angeles. It made some improvements to the Cybertruck and Semi, but that hardly counts as a full-time job. Meanwhile, Tesla is establishing new design centers for the localized models in Shanghai and Berlin.
A new model takes about 7 years to evolve in normal conditions, 5 years in high-speed conditions, and at least 3 years at Tesla when Elon sleeps on the floor. The design of the Tesla Model 2 must be well advanced in order to bring it to market in the timeframe listed a few years ago. The only way to balance this with the promise that local teams will be able to create unique models for their markets is for those design teams to be able to use a forum.
Carlos Ghosn gave a presentation about the future of car growth and production a few years ago. A skateboard-like platform served as the foundation. Different brands could build their coaches on it. To customize for the local market, local design teams will add a skin to the outside and inside. They could make new visual models as much as they wanted. The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance was able to maintain distinct identities for its brands while sharing the costly creation and manufacturing of car parts. VW applies this design theory in various ways through its networks, products, and models.
For its localized Model 2 vehicles, I believe Tesla is developing something similar to Volkswagen’s MEB (Modularer E-Antriebs-Baukasten) collection of building blocks. This is the only way the new design teams in Berlin and China will be able to produce localized models in less than a year and begin production in less than two years.
There will be a front casting, a rear casting, and a structural battery on this Model 2 series platform. For single motor (front or rear), dual motor, and performance models, there will most likely be multiple variations of front and rear castings. The structural battery can come in a variety of sizes and cell chemistries. A collection of engines, suspensions, brakes, power electronics, seating, HVAC, and other components will be used as well. Small and medium vans can be built from the same collection of building blocks.
Tesla’s product lineup is in desperate need of more variety. This Tesla Model 2 series platform can be used to produce the necessary variety without adding too much complexity to the manufacturing process.
The BEV industry, more than Tesla, needs these models. BEVs with limited usability are being produced by legacy automakers, while PHEVs are becoming more capable and larger. From their perspective, it’s understandable, but it’s completely incorrect for the transfer.