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Tesla launches standard Model 3, shifts worldwide sales online

By Daniel Uria
Tesla announced the launch of its standard Model 3 vehicle and said it plans to move all of its sales online Thursday. Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/27d529d67823134eda06764b7885efde/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
Tesla announced the launch of its standard Model 3 vehicle and said it plans to move all of its sales online Thursday. Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 28 (UPI) -- Tesla launched the standard edition of its Model 3 electric car and said it would shift all of its sales online Thursday.

The company announced that the $35,000 version of the Model 3 and a $37,000 model with enhanced performance and features are available for purchase.

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"Shifting all sales online, combined with other ongoing cost efficiencies, will enable us to lower all vehicle prices by about 6 percent on average, allowing us to achieve the $35,000 Model 3 price point earlier than we expected," the company said.

The $35,000 standard model features 220 miles of range, a top speed of 130 mph and 0-60 mph acceleration of 5.6 seconds, while the $37,000 Model 3 Standard Range Plus offers 240 miles of range, a top speed of 140 mph, 0-60 mph acceleration of 5.3 seconds and "premium interior features."

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Tesla added that online customers will be able to return a car within seven days or 1,000 miles for a full refund, which it said would eliminate the need for a test drive.

During a conference call with reporters, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the company won't turn a profit in the first quarter, but expects it will return to profitability in the second quarter, CNBC reported.

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"Given that there is a lot happening in Q1, and we are taking a lot of one time charges, there are a lot of challenges getting cars to China and Europe, we do not expect to be profitable. We do think that profitability in Q2 is likely," Musk said.

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Musk said he anticipated demand of more than 500,000 Model 3s a year after it delivered 145,610 of the vehicles in 2018 at higher prices.

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