The electric car maker announced that it’s almost ready to start shipping the long-awaited X SUV model.
In a letter to shareholders, Tesla revealed on Wednesday afternoon that its highly expected seven-seater SUV will start shipping to customers this September.
“As we prepare to launch Model X in September, we are building more validation vehicles, executing final engineering and testing work, enabling our new manufacturing equipment and finalizing arrangements with our suppliers,” Tesla CEO Elon Musk enthused in the letter. “We have been producing release candidate Model X bodies in our new body shop equipped with more than 500 robots.”
However, there’s already long queue of those who want purchase the novelty and if are in this waiting list, you won’t get the vehicle until 2016. A price has not been announced, but sources familiar with the matter say that you’ll need a $5,000 deposit just to get on the list.
Musk went on, adding that price for the new model X will be “very similar” to that of the Model S, which starts at $50,000 after federal tax credits and gas savings.
The company executive also said Tesla plans to ship as mush as 12,000 vehicles in the current period (the same number shipped in the second quarter), a 60 percent increase over the number of cars shipped in the third quarter of 2014. Most of these will be the Model S, while a “small number” will be the Model X SUV.
“The Model X has been long delayed already, with early estimates suggesting it would roll off Tesla’s Bay Area production line in Fremont, California at the end of 2013. This was later updated to the end of 2014. To hear Musk tell it, the company has been having trouble with suppliers,” Mashable explains.
Still, perhaps the coolest feature of the expected model, though, is worth waiting for: the rear doors are articulated so they go up rather than out.
“Every Model X comes with all-wheel drive standard, powered by two independent, digitally controlled electric motors. Brilliantly functional Falcon Wing rear doors fold up and out of the way to allow easy access to third row seats,” Tesla announces.