In terms of pricing and performance, Tesla Model 3 is expected to rival the likes of Mercedes Benz E-Class, BMW 5-Series and Audi A6
It was late last year when Tesla finally broke the news that it would be entering India for business. The company earlier this year registered itself in the country as Tesla India Motors And Energy Private Limited and set up camp in Bengaluru, Karnataka.
Tesla in India
The American automaker is expected to conduct its business in India through three cities initially- Bengaluru, Mumbai and New Delhi. The first car to make Tesla’s presence felt will likely be the Model 3 electric sedan. These prototypes will also be used for Automotive Research of India or ARAI approvals and for other compliances.
Initially, all models of Tesla will be brought to the country as Completely Built Units (CBU). The company has already started testing the Model 3 in India. As per certain reports, Tesla has brought three Model 3 units to the country solely for the purpose of on-road testing. Earlier, these were spotted without any camouflage, but latest spy shots show these wearing full camouflage. This is the first time a Tesla car has been spied wearing full camouflage on Indian roads.
Latest spy shots are credit to automotive enthusiast Maitrey Gogate. It was spied in Chakan near Pune. Chakan is where most plants of companies like Mercedes, Volkswagen, Mahindra, Bajaj are located. Even Tata Motors plant is near Chakan. Tesla Model 3 electric car is expected to be launched in India by the end of this year or early next year.
Scope for local manufacturing of Tesla cars
Depending upon the response to Model 3, the company would then take a call on local assembly and manufacturing of its electric cars in India. Tesla has also planned to establish a battery manufacturing unit and an R&D centre in the country. For a start, sales of Model 3 will be taken care of by the company via digital retailing.
Earlier, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari had requested Tesla to consider local manufacturing operation of their electric cars in India in order to avail additional incentives. In return, the minister assured that cost of production of an electric car for Tesla in India would be less than the rest of the world, even China. The American electric carmaker would like to see the response and weigh in all options before committing anything.
Model 3 Specs
Tesla currently retails four electric cars under its portfolio namely Model 3, Model S, Model Y and Model X with Model 3 serving as the entry-level car. Both Model 3 and Model Y account for maximum sales for Tesla in global markets. Model 3 is offered in three configurations in international markets- Standard Range Plus, Long Range and Performance. The electric sedan offers a single-charge range between 381km – 580km (as per WLTP).
The top-spec Performance variant is designed for driving enthusiasts and offers maximum driving pleasure. It offers an output of 450 bhp and 639 Nm of peak torque. It can sprint 0-100kmph in just 3.1 seconds and can attain a top speed of 261 kmph. Model 3 also offers Tesla’s Autopilot self-driving function as standard. When it comes to India, Model 3 is expected to be priced between Rs. 55-60 lakh (ex-showroom).