Tesla Model Y
Image credit: AFP

Tesla has just officially unveiled its new offering, the Model Y, and it's literally unforgettable.

The Model Y represents a further step into the crossover market for the automaker, and is the second mass-market vehicle from the brand. The vehicle is slated for production late in 2020.

Set to feature autonomous driving capability, the vehicle is impossible to lose, and will be able to find, and travel to its owner. The self-drive and parking abilities are subject to regulatory approval.

The seven-seater is based primarily on the existing Model 3, sharing approximately 75% of its parts, but boasts a hatch and a taller stance than its older sister, with a claimed 0-60 mile-per-hour time of 3.5 seconds at a slightly (10%) higher price point than the Model 3' $35,000. Elon Musk was quoted as saying that it "will cost about 10 percent more, and have slightly less range for same battery."

An initial long-range version will first be made available for purchase, with a cheaper, standard-range model expected in 2021. According to chief designer Franz Holzhausen, the new model will be equipped to pull, compete with towbar, and Model 3’s may be in for some pulling ability too.

Boasting a full-charge range of 300 miles, and a quick-charge rate of 15 minute to 168 miles of range, Tesla claims the Model Y will have the longest range of any SUV on the road, performance that in part is boosted by the company’s supercharger technology.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk originally scheduled the release for March 15th, or “The Ides of March” which historically represents a major turning-point in Roman history and carries a sense of foreboding for some, but changed the date to the 14th, revealing the vehicle in the marque’s LA facility to both media and stakeholders.

The unveiling comes amidst some exciting announcements from competitors like Ford, Volkswagen, Honda and Jaguar.

According to Musk, the Model Y will most likely be built at the company’s ‘Gigafactory’ outside Reno, Nevada, whilst vehicles for the Chinese market will be built at the company’s mega-facility outside Shanghai.