On Thursday, Tesla filled the gap in its range with a new entry-level Model S 60. The car starts at $66,000 before tax incentives. Tesla previously discontinued the Model S 70 due to lack of demand, but this new model is several thousand dollars cheaper. Once rebates and gas savings factor in, the company says “the effective cost of owning Model S 60 comes to about $50k.”
The Model S 60 gets a 60kWh battery, good for 0-60mph (0-96km/h) in 5.5 seconds and 200 miles of range between charges. It comes with the full suite of driver assists, and if you decide at some point you want more juice, a software upgrade will unlock the battery to 75kWh.
Tesla’s approach to selling electric vehicles has been fascinating. Launching straight into the upper end of the market with the Model S was clever, and it laid the groundwork for the Model 3 mass-market follow-up. With the top and bottom ends covered (reminiscent of Shaka Zulu’s “Buffalo Horns” strategy perhaps?), Tesla has moved in for the kill at the middle. This new Model S fits nicely between the $35,000 Model 3 and $89,500 Model S 90D, and the price is aimed squarely at buyers of mid-level luxury cars like the A6, 5 Series, and E-Class.