Tesla wants to commence production of a new mass-market electric vehicle in 2025 to provide more competition to cheaper gasoline-powered cars as well as rival EVs.
According to an exclusive Reuters report citing four well-placed sources, Elon Musk’s company has informed suppliers it wants to get production going at the mid-way point next year to deliver on a long-held ambition to build a $25,000 car.
Said to be codenamed Redwood, the plan for an affordable EV extends to self-driving robotaxis, which would be made using next-generation advances.
An inexpensive model would introduce Tesla to a much wider audience, but it is clear that there is still work to be done if that ambition is to be achieved. The Texas-based automotive multinational currently has the Model 3 sedan as its entry-level product, with a base price of $38,990 in the United States.
If Tesla can hit the £25k price point, it will strike a blow on BYD, its rival Chinese firm, which is increasingly producing cheaper EV alternatives.
Bold claim on new Tesla developments
In the race for supremacy in the world’s largest EV market – China – Tesla still holds the edge as number one but due to BYD’s best-selling models costing half as much as the equivalent Tesla vehicle, they sold far more units overall.
The cost factor was further highlighted in a report by global automotive data experts JATO Dynamics which indicated that the average retail price of new electric cars on sale in China is now less than half the average price in Europe, at circa £27,153 ($34,632) compared to £58,256 ($74,303).
At Tesla’s annual shareholder meeting in May last year, Elon Musk confirmed the company was working on two new vehicles with a combined sales potential of 5 million units per year:
“Both the design of the products and manufacturing techniques are head and shoulders above anything else in the industry,” he stated.
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