Elon Musk: Tesla’s Mass-Market Model 3 Begins Production Friday

The release date of Tesla’s first mass-produced electric car — the Model 3 — has been announced on Sunday.

Elon Musk, Tesla Motor’s chief executive, wrote in a tweet late Sunday that the first batch of Tesla Model 3 vehicles is expected to roll out on Friday, with the highly-anticipated automobile having “passed all regulatory requirements for production two weeks ahead of schedule,” the NY Times reports.

Musk also announced in a follow-up tweet that 30 customers will be receiving Model 3 vehicles at a “handover party” on July 28. He says that Tesla aims to produce more Model 3’s in the following months: 100 cars in August and then above 1,500 in September.

In Elon Musk’s final tweet for the night, he said the company is expecting to produce a whopping 20,000 Model 3 cars per month starting December.

Before announcing the Model 3, Tesla has only sold expensive luxury cars in small quantities, selling them for $90,000 or more. According to Tesla’s Q4 production and deliveries report, the company produced a total of 83,922 vehicles in 2016.

The Model 3’s base price, compared to Tesla’s luxury models, will be much cheaper. Before options, each car will be sold for around $35,000, with a range of up to 215 miles.

In June, Elon Musk told shareholders that Tesla will begin producing Model 3 vehicles in July at the company’s assembly plant in Fremont, California. Production is also expected to speed up on account of the company’s plan to automate the said assembly plant. Better yet, Musk said the company is set to build more plants in the near future.

“There is no room at Fremont,” he said. “We are bursting at the seams.”

Tesla pretty much has almost everything covered. As previously reported by the NY Times, the company installed a $5 billion factory in Nevada to produce the batteries for the electric cars. Tesla also looks to be capable of addressing the increasing demand for Model 3s, as the company’s stock has recently received a boost after adding about $1 billion to its coffers via offerings of stock and debt. Tencent Holdings, one of China’s largest internet companies, has recently purchased a five percent stake in the company.

Thanks to the huge buzz surrounding the Model 3’s impending release, investor confidence has boosted Tesla’s stock up 67 percent this year. Currently, Tesla has a market value of $59 billion — $7 billion more than its fiercest competitor, General Motors.

[Featured Image by Raoul Gatchalian/AP Images]