Tesla unveils Model Y as EV race heats up

Tesla Reveals Model Y ‘Baby SUV’ Tonight: How To Watch Live

Shares of Tesla Inc fell about 4 percent on Friday, as investors wondered if its unveiling of an electric sports utility vehicle would add to pressure on cash flow, while analysts anxious the carmaker was not addressing slowing demand for other models.

It's fair to say the automaker is up against an entirely different set of hurdles than it was on March 31, 2016.

In addition to those benefits - which include affordability for the mass market, performance, and range - Elon Musk has also stated that the Model Y will offer the versatility and all benefits of a proven SUV but with the "ride" of a sports auto, meaning it will be "really tight on corners". A Dual Motor AWD version has 280-miles of range 135mph top speed, 4.8 second s0-60mph time and a $51,000 price point.

Tesla has yet to confirm where the Model Y will be produced, with latest reports suggesting it could be built at the company's Gigafactory facility in Reno, Nevada.

It will seat seven - something that Tesla has been enthusiastic in offering - so it's cutting right into the heart of a popular segment of the market.

The Model X, so some would insist, is more like a smoothed-over minivan.

The Model Y, which should appeal to buyers of vehicles such as the Mercedes GLA, BMW X2, or Lexus NX, will have a starting price of $39,000 for the standard range version. That entry model will follow in the spring of 2021. The three pricier versions of the vehicle will start between $47,000 and $60,000, and will begin shipping in 2020.

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However, Musk spoke optimistically of Tesla's autonomous driving software which will also be available on the Model Y.

Tesla says the vehicle will go 0-60 miles per hour in 3.5 seconds with a top speed of 150 miles per hour.

Due to its connection to the Model 3, the Model Y shares about 75% of its components with the auto. All Model Ys will come with a panoramic glass roof, too. Musk has said that cars fitted with Autopilot hardware will be able to drive themselves completely autonomously in the future. If the Model Y inspires any such passion, it hardly shows so far. and what little enthusiasm it has generated is unlikely to survive the next two years (plus the inevitable adjustment for "Elon Standard Time").

Tesla is now going through hard times, with Musk charged by the SEC with contempt for tweeting "inaccurate and material" information about the company. Deposits can be made for $2500, a notable hike over the $1000 deposit required to get in line for a Model 3 when it was announced.

Front shot of Model Y.

The covers are officially off, and at first glance the much-anticipated Model Y looks to be a proper contender in the compact crossover market. Its battery would have the capacity to last for 230 miles.

In October, Musk said "significant progress" had been made on the Model Y and that he had approved the prototype for production in 2020.