Tesla’s time-honored habit of not sticking to the deadlines it sets will work out in the favor of Model Y buyers. The California-based automaker will begin delivering the Model Y, the latest addition to its range, on Friday the 13th.
Company co-founder and CEO Elon Musk unveiled the Model Y (pictured below) during a private event in early 2019, and he announced production would start in the fall of 2020. We’re not out of winter yet, so fall isn’t exactly around the corner, but Tesla fan site Electrek learned Tesla has started contacting early reservation holders to set up a delivery appointment. Future owners are sharing delivery information in real time on a Google spreadsheet.
Browsing through the spreadsheet reveals several customers will receive their Model Y on Friday, March 13. The first cars will be delivered in California, which is par for the course when it comes to a Tesla launch, but the company will quickly ship outside of its home state, and an Oregon-based buyer is scheduled to get his car on March 14.
The electric Model Y will gradually reach the rest of the nation. Deliveries in New York, Ohio, and Arizona are scheduled for March 19, 25, and 31, respectively. Interestingly, looking at the spreadsheet — which tallies a small chunk of Model Y reservation holders — reveals most buyers selected the Long Range All-Wheel Drive version, which comes with a pair of electric motors. The hot-rodded Performance variant is popular, too.
Production has already started; the 1 millionth Tesla built was a red Model Y. We’ve seen cars testing across the United States before, notably in the snowy California mountains, but they’ve always been pre-production prototypes. The examples Tesla will deliver in March will be regular-production models put in the hands of paying customers, though it’s unclear whether the company will again move its employees to the front of the line.
Tesla has remained surprisingly quiet about Model Y deliveries, so we don’t know how it managed to speed up the development process. Regardless, it’s a sign the company learned from the mistakes it made while launching the Model 3. It will take a while before the production line reaches its cruising speed, and Tesla said it will build a third factory in the United States to keep up with demand, but I expect the Y’s launch will be far smoother than the 3’s. Crossovers are more popular than sedans, so the Model Y could become Tesla’s best-seller in a short amount of time.