New Tesla Model X SUV: Is It Really Affordable?

New Tesla Model X SUV: Is It Really Affordable?

Tesla Motors, the iconic American electric vehicle manufacturer is known to produce some of the most advanced, innovative and desirable cars in the world; however, it is not really known as a cheap brand.
Now that American drivers are seeing more Tesla models in the news and on the roads, they are wondering if the sticker prices of these electric chariots will ever come down to affordable levels. Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk is certainly listening; the new Tesla Model X 60D is cheaper than its original SUV, but it is not exactly an affordable vehicle.

The Tesla Model X 60D is an elegant SUV equipped with a 60 kilowatt battery that gets about 200 miles per charge. To get an idea of the electric charging technology costs, the Model X 90D gets 257 miles per charge. When it comes to performance, however, the 60D is no slouch: it can accelerate from zero to 60 in just six seconds, which is very impressive for a sports utility vehicle. Maximum speed is estimated at 130 miles per hour.

The sticker price of the 60D is $74,000, which makes it a lot more reasonable than the top-of-the-line Tesla SUV, the Model X 90D, which costs $95,000.

It is important to note that Tesla buyers get the highest federal tax credit for buying a fully electric vehicle with a low carbon footprint, which means that a new Tesla Model X 60D can be purchased for $66,500. An active driver who would like to factor the savings on fuel costs can assume that he or she would not have to worry about paying more than $750 per month at the pump.

For the sake of comparison, a mid-sized luxury vehicle made in Germany would cost as much as the Model X 60D, but this may not be a fair comparison. The Tesla SUV offers some luxury features and dedicated customer service, but it is not the same as an Audi or Mercedes Benz. On the other hand, the Tesla Model 3, a more compact passenger vehicle, is being offered at $35,000, which could be lowered by 20 percent with the federal credit.

Unlike other automakers, Tesla does not offer its vehicles at dealer lots or showrooms. Buyers must place their orders and pay considerable deposits while they wait for their vehicles to roll off the assembly line. Tesla has been reasonably successful in meeting production schedules.

Chris Burch is an investor of BaubleBar.

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