Here’s Everything We Know About the Tesla Model Y

October 09, 2019 by Eileen Falkenberg-Hull, @writeEILEEN

Tesla’s Model Y compact crossover is on its way, according to Elon Musk, the electric vehicle maker’s chief executive. As is usual with Tesla, though, the development and production timelines are far from certain, as are final specifications. The “Y” will be Tesla’s newest model after the S, X and 3.

Here’s what knows.


Tesla expects deliveries of the Model Y to start in autumn 2020.

Musk previously said that the crossover will be produced at the company’s Gigafactory plant in Nevada for the U.S. market. However, the company has decided to add an additional line to its Fremont, California plant instead. This is the same plant where Tesla models are currently being produced in tents outside the building.

As is the norm with Tesla, the least expensive grade will go on sale last.


Tesla plans to sell the Model Y in four grades: Standard Range, Long Range, Dual Motor All Wheel Drive, and Dual Motor AWD Performance.

Range will vary by grade. The Standard Range will be good for 230 miles between charges while the Long Range is supposed to deliver up to 300 miles. The two Dual Motor grades each can go 280 miles between plug-ins.

The “Y” will be able to use Tesla’s Supercharger network including the new V3 high-speed Superchargers.


The Model Y Long Range will hit the market first at a $48,000 starting price. The Dual Motor AWD will follow, starting at $52,000 and the Performance grade will start at $61,000.

tesla-model-y-2Tesla intends to begin Standard Range Y deliveries in the spring of 2021 with a starting price of around $39,000.

Orders, with refundable $2,500 deposits, are now being accepted via Tesla’s website.

The advertised prices have increased by $1,000 per model since Tesla first announced the Model Y.


Tesla said the Model Y Standard Range will accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 5.9 seconds.

Pricier trims get there quicker: The Long Range in 5.5 seconds.; Dual-Motor in 4.8 seconds and Performance in 3.5 seconds.


The Model Y crossover will share a platform with the Tesla Model 3 compact sedan. Exterior design, though, appears to borrow heavily from the larger Model X SUV.

It is still fairly sleek, though. Musk has said that the Model Y has a drag coefficient of 0.23.


Like the Model X, the Model Y will have seating for up to seven. It comes standard with two front seats and seating for three behind. An available third row seats two more. That third-row seating won’t be available until 2021, though. And it will add $3,000 to the price.

Two-row Model Ys will have 66 cubic feet of storage space with the second-row seats folded.

That’s about 10 cubic feet less cargo space than the Subaru Forester offers, 9 cubic feet less than the CR-V and 3 cubic feet less than the RAV4. However, it is 6.4 cubes more than the Mazda CX-5 provides.

A 15-inch touch screen display and panoramic glass roof will be standard.

tesla-model-y-interiorThe Y’s rear doors will be conventionally hinged, not overhead opening like the Model X’s “falcon wing” doors.

The standard exterior paint will be Pearl White Multi-Coat. Optional colors will cost buyers a bit more: Solid Black, $750, and Midnight Silver Metallic or Deep Blue Metallic, $1,000, and Red Multi-Coat, $2,000.

Standard wheels on all but the Performance trim are 18-inch alloys, 19-inch “sport wheels” will run $1,500 extra.

The Performance trim comes with 20-inch wheels and a lowered suspension.

Musk has said the Model Y will have a tow bar, but towing capacity has yet to be made public. Other models in the compact crossover segment tow anywhere from 1,500 to 3,500 pounds.


Tesla’s standard “autopilot” driver assistance package is standard.

True “self-driving,” or fully autonomous operation, isn’t legal yet in the U.S., but Tesla said it will provide that capability as soon as it is legal.

There’s a $6,000 charge to get your Model Y with what the company describes as “full self-driving capability” through continuing over-the-air software upgrades.


The Y will compete in the auto industry’s fastest growing segment.

Some will argue that, as an EV, the new Tesla won’t have much competition. But many buyers look at more than powertrain.

When that’s the case, the Model Y will be up against heavy hitters including the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, Nissan Rogue Ford Escape and the upcoming Ford Mustang-inspired crossover, expected to debut in late 2019.

None of those, of course, are available with all-electric powertrains, the only way the Model Y will be equipped.

Jerry Hirsch September 30, 2019
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