Traditionally when Tesla unveiled a new version of its Model S electric sedan it was typically catered to the upper end of the market not only in terms of price, but also features such as Ludicrous mode and new interior options. However, today’s announcement from the California based firm flips the script, and focuses on the low end of the market.
Dubbed the Model S 60 and 60 D respectively both of these models will offer buyers at least 200 miles of driving range in a package that starts at $66,000. In case this package sounds familiar to hardcore Tesla fans, it’s because the company used to sell a Model S that came with a 60 -kWh battery before killing it in 2015. The company also sold a 40-kWh model but stopped production of that particular model back in 2013. While it appears that these model’s are setting a new precedent by resurrecting a previously canceled model, a closer look reveals that things are much different when one takes a closer look.
It all starts with the price tag which is lower than before, and now starts at $66,000 (a noticeable drop over the previous model’s $70,000 base price.) Furthermore, an all-wheel drive version (the 60D) is also available, and both variants come equipped with a 75-kWh battery pack which matched the current generations battery pack. The new models will also come equipped with standard Autopilot hardware which will not only allow buyers to upgrade the battery pack for more range, but also turn on the full Autopilot suite of software. The latter allows the car to achieve limited autonomous driving capability, but a recent string of controversy as well as several high profile incidents with the system do show that it still needs some tweaking before it can truly be an alternative to traditional driving. This announcement will not only open the Model S to a wider pool of customers, but also allow the company to have a more comprehensive level of trim levels especially for buyers that will eventually move up from the entry level Model 3 sedan when it arrives in Tesla showrooms.