Most automobile manufacturers from Toyota to BMW have an entry level car. Their strategy is to get you into their eco system so you stay with them as you grow. Whether you get a larger family, or land a promotion, they expect you to upgrade. In the BMW example, you can start with the 3 series, move into the 5 series or X series SUV if you have a family. You can then aspire to a more sporty vehicle like the M3, M5, the 4 series or the 6 series. Towards your retirement, you can end up with the large 7 series.
I can understand Tesla is trying to offer an entry level sedan at 35K (where the average car in the US is 37K) for similar reasons. This vehicle will appear to the average consumer and will act as an entry into the Tesla brand and ecosystem. As you grow, you can always upgrade to a larger battery, faster Model 3 or even jump to a Model S or Model X as your family grows.
However, in the BMW example, the faster more expensive cars of one model are highly differentiated from their entry level counterpart. The BMW M3 looks very distinct from the regular BMW 3 series. And herein lies the problem with the Tesla Model 3 . A fully decked out Performance Model 3 will cost 69,500 USD excluding taxes. That is nearly double the entry level Model 3 yet there is no spoiler, wing or badging to show the difference.
I believe the 35K Model 3 is a great addition to the Tesla line up. But I wonder how many Performance Model 3 owners will feel knowing that they are paying double for aesthetically the same looking car with no differentiation.
Disclaimer: Evoto does not own any Performance Model 3’s but all our Tesla’s are dual motor for maximum safety during Canada’s harsh winters. Our Model 3’s are Long Range fully loaded Dual motor Model 3’s.