4 Reasons Why Tesla Still Hasn’t Fully Revealed Model 3


Tesla Model 3

Tesla Model 3


Here are four possible reasons why Tesla won’t reveal any details about the Model 3 until it’s already in production, presumably this summer.

Tesla Model 3

  1. There’s no need to generate more sales.
  2. Why tip your hand to the competition?
  3. Some things might not be finalized. Huh? With just a few months left? Absolutely. This ain’t Detroit we’re talking about. On-the-fly changes are a Tesla hallmark.
  4. Some Model 3 features may leapfrog the S and X, rendering them stale already. Relentless innovation can shorten the shelf life of your products. With phones or graphic cards costing a few hundred dollars, this isn’t a big consumer problem. They can easily upgrade. With cars, it’s a problem. And retrofitting Tesla’s latest tech into the S/X might be difficult or impossible. So, in short, Tesla might be savoring the last glory days of the S/X. The III might vanguard the “second generation” of Tesla products that make the first look bad.

*Editor’s note: This and other Tesla-related posts appear on TeslaMondo. Check it out here.

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80 Comments on "4 Reasons Why Tesla Still Hasn’t Fully Revealed Model 3"

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1000% agreed

Point 4: Wrong.
You’re not going to invalidate the product that costs 4X more.

Option 3 – its vaporware!

Yep, Musk sure got up good.

Did a tour of the factory Monday. Ain’t vaporware.

Did you get a look at the new parts press?

Hey Bryan!

How about a report… please? Pretty please?

The tour was very interesting. Had to sign NDA so I can’t say anything that would be revealing. Not that I have anything special to talk about. They had a huge area fenced off with lots of stuff going on inside. Someone in the group asked about Model 3 and it was said that we went by Model 3 changes multiple times. That would explain the fenced and shielded sections that the tram drove by. Any other questions regarding the Model 3 were answered with “We are on schedule to start production in July.”

How’s things in Elon Musks Land of Lithium? Hoping for any tid bits you might throw our way.

Moinuddin Ahmed Shwapnil

Hi Bryan Whitton,
We would like to have a factory tour. Please let us know whom at Tesla to call.
Moinuddin Ahmed Shwapnil

I don’t have a clue. I have a friend that purchased a signature Model X and he got a tour as a result. He asked if I would like to attend. It took me about oh 3 Milli-seconds to reply YES!.

Hundreds of thousands of depositors who don’t know what they are buying..amazing.

I have two on reservation and I very much know what I am going to get. I don’t have all the specifics nor the exact price but I have a very good understanding of the car’s general attributes.

They know what they’re buying, why don’t you know it? What’s your bias that you can’t figure this out.

-Advanced performance, safety, and a non-polluting solution.

Ask people with reservation deposits to fill out a standard specification form…didn’t think so.

Possum peckers?!?

Possum’s pecker
1). A slang phrase used to describe a person of questionable worth.
2). A non-person who comes out nightly suffering from “little man’s disease”.
3). A friendly greeting used in the Waseca and Janesville area of Minnesota.
4). A subliminal code indicating that your junk is longer than average.
5). Phrase used by Jackie Gleason in the 1977 movie, “Smokey and the Bandit”.

Sounds like a pussum has a BS, But an Opossum Doesn’t.. l m a o..

6) A running gag on TeslaMondo, where it seems to be used as self-deprecating humor, apparently with meanings #1 and #5 (which actually are two ways of saying the same thing). The use on TeslaMondo is apparently intended as mocking but not necessarily pejorative or insulting.

Compare “pudknocker”, a word used to mean much the same thing in The Right Stuff (book and film).


One possible example of #4 is that the 2170 battery may allow for higher charging rates than the current roughly 120-130 kW limit that the Model S/X currently hits.

This has been rumored, but I haven’t seen an official confirmation. But if #4 is true, then Tesla obviously won’t confirm until they do the Model 3 final reveal….

Boy I hope that’s true. Even with no change in battery charging specs the car will be an improvement because it gets better miles per kwh than the S or X.

Now add a higher C rate battery rating for charging and charging times drop significantly.

This should depend on the electrode material more than anything. Any advantage the cell has of larger electrode size (surface area) is mitigated by there being fewer cells. They could in theory end up with worse charge rates although I don’t really expect that.

If the new cells would come with a Ford flavor of 16 C, the Model 3 would be ready to Megacharge which on its turn would explain why Elon asked if the new competition 350 KW charging stations were kid toys.

I like to look forward to that, it makes me feel good and positive about the future.

“There’s no need to generate more sales.” If Tesla were genuinely confident in building 150k-ish cars (about 50k of these Model 3) in 2017 and 500k cars in 2018, then why in the world would they turn away deposits? In fact this would be a great opportunity to increase the ticket price to $2500 to get in line for some truly “new” stuff. “Why tip your hand to the competition?” Of course, on-the-fly changes to things that are part of a complex hardware/software system in the Model X was a mistake, and it took months of crippled production to get 1000 cars out the door (with the very next stop at a Service Center). Does this mean that (a) Tesla is about to replay that drama, or (b) they are going to spend vast sums of money on revised tooling, fixturing, test equipment, etc. to mitigate late-in-game changes, or (c) Teslarati is just wrong? And, BTW: what competition? “Some Model 3 features may leapfrog the S and X, rendering them stale already.” Name something. Also, what do you mean by “retrofit”? Do you mean incorporate into future S/X production after it’s outed in the 3 “reveal”? What would that be… Read more »
“If Tesla were genuinely confident in building 150k-ish cars (about 50k of these Model 3) in 2017 and 500k cars in 2018, then why in the world would they turn away deposits?” Because, at least according to one recent comment posted to InsideEVs, someone making a reservation today would already be looking at a delivery in 2019. Why advertise a car when it won’t be available for at least two years? This would lead to frustration among many, many would-be buyers, and thus to a great number of annoyed and/or “sour grapes” posts on social media. That’s something Tesla strongly wants to avoid. Now, that aside, Realistic, I think I see what you mean to imply here: that the reason there hasn’t been a full Reveal of the Model 3 is that it’s not finished yet. But that’s what TeslaMondo gave as reason #3 out of 4, so it’s not like the loudest Tesla cheerleader on the Internet is trying to distract from the real reason. This isn’t necessarily a binary, either/or situation. It’s entirely possible that Tesla Motors has more than one motive for putting off the final, full Reveal of the Model 3. All in all, I think… Read more »

But 2019 delivery is the assessment of the bears, not Tesla itself.

I’m having trouble keeping track of Elon’s ever-evolving promises, but wasn’t he claiming there would be several hundred thousand MIIIs delivered this year and 500k/yr after that?

If that is to be believed, then there is no reason not to encourage more reservations; even if every single reservation converts to a sale, Tesla would be fulfilling new orders by mid-2018 at the latest.

Spider-Dan asked: “…wasn’t he [Musk] claiming there would be several hundred thousand MIIIs delivered this year and 500k/yr after that?” No. The 500k/yr figure includes sales of the Models S and X. I’m guessing Tesla is targeting ~400k per year for the Model 3, but that’s just my estimate. And I don’t know that Elon ever said Tesla would make 500,000 cars in 2018. Perhaps they are targeting a run rate equivalent to 500k per year by the end of 2018, but I think that assumes an on-time start of production and no serious delays… neither of which seem very likely, given the combination of Tesla’s history of delays and its every aggressive schedule for ramping up production. But more importantly, there is an unfortunate tendency for writers of Tesla-related articles on other websites to ignore the rather important distinction between, for example, a run rate equivalent to 400,000 cars per year by the end of a given year, and actually producing 400,000 cars in that year. That’s as bad as saying that because your Model S P100D reached 225 MPH at the end of a 1/8 mile run, that it must have run the entire 1/8 mile at that… Read more »

“And I don’t know that Elon ever said Tesla would make 500,000 cars in 2018.”

You’re right. He didn’t say that they would make 500,000 cars in 2018; he said that they would sell 500,000 cars in 2018.

Tesla Plans to Sell 500,000 Cars in 2018

And just to clarify the front half of what I said, from the very same careful InsideEVs writers that you just praised:

Elon Musk: Tesla Model 3 Production Target Is Up To 200,000 In Second Half Of 2017

Lest you think I’m taking that (complete quote of an) article title out of context, Elon predicts “100,000 to 200,000” Model 3s in the second half of 2017; i.e. 100,000 is the low end.

If you want to know why people keep citing these wild-eyed guesstimates of Tesla production, it’s because they are taking Elon Musk at his word.


Greencarreports disagrees on the 500,000 number, here is how they explain it:

“Technically, the goal is to be selling at A RATE of 500,000 cars a year by the end of 2018”


It wouldn’t be the first time that conservative news sources got a green car story wrong:


Time Warner is now a “conservative news source”?

You’re stretching pretty hard to cover for Elon’s crazy promises.

realistic said “why in the world would they turn away deposits?”

Either you are being overly dramatic for no reason, or you are very confused. They aren’t turning away deposits. They simply aren’t actively soliciting more deposits by doing Sales Marketing Events for the Model 3 (like a Model 3 Reveal Event).

You can reserve one today:

Realistic said: ““Some Model 3 features may leapfrog the S and X, rendering them stale already.” Name something…What would that be since the S / X are “complex”, but the 3 is “simple”?” ________________________ I posted one example of the possible benefits of 2170 batteries. Another example is that Tesla created a brand new Inverter just for the Model 3 starting from a clean sheet of paper. It is more simple and yet more efficient than any Inverter Tesla has ever made, going all the way back to when they started building their own Inverters for the Roadster based on off the shelf components. Along with being more efficient, it actually is higher ‘power’ (details here): https://electrek.co/2016/06/29/tesla-model-3-exclusive-leak-specs-300kw-inverter-architecture-power-capacity-model-s/ Both are examples of simplicity being an advantage for the Model 3 over the S/X. A third example is the all-glass roof, which while it is a cool feature, it also simplifies manufacturing at the same time. All of these features are likely to be retrofitted back into the S/X cars. Tesla has already announced they will retrofit the 2170 batteries some time after the TM3 release. The inverter would likely happen at the same time. Tesla is already making inverters for the… Read more »

Tesla hasn’t said they’d retrofit the 2170 into S/X.

Future S/X models might use them but that would just be a design choice. That’s not a retrofit.

In late 2013 Tesla signed a 4 year contract with Panasonic to provide 18650 cells for the Model S. That contract will come to the end of its term some time late this year (we don’t have an exact date).

Tesla and Panasonic so far haven’t announced anything as to what will happen after that. They would need to negotiate a new deal or a contract extension.

The end of that 4-year contract would be a natural time to move to a new format. Yes they certainly can extend, or renegotiate, anything is possible.

But without a new contract for 18650 cells, the only cells that Tesla will have will be 2170’s by the end of 2017.

Tesla will have to source 18650s as replacements anyway, they will have a continued supply I assure you.

Your assertion above was still wrong. Tesla has said nothing about a retrofit. Given the cost savings there will surely be a Model S/X with the new cells at some point. But Tesla didn’t say anything about a retrofit.

Yeah… Alan Cocconi’s designs are a little long in the tooth now. Alan stupidly declined to be on board with Tesla. Where is AC Propulsion now?

One for me is that the Model 3 can tow, I like the Model S but if only it could tow.
I don’t like the Model X and know it tow so why can’t the Model S.

“What competition?”. Jaguar I-Pace for upper end 3’s dual motor 90kw battery, pre-production cars now in test (photos on net) full production reveal September-October customer deliveries Jan 2018 price £55-£60k ( with 20% sales tax included) …. and as surveys have shown nobody appears to be buying a base Model 3.

““Some Model 3 features may leapfrog the S and X, rendering them stale already.”
Name something.”
1) HUD
2) Higher C rate cells
3) Solar roof
4) Conductive self charging
5) New glass to glass back door hinge for new wide opening AND high head height. (Making a hatchback like possible)
6) Polyurethane tires
7) Magnetic suspension system instead of air suspension.
8) Pothole ahead magnetic wheel rising for smooth pass.

How much information were people expecting before the thing goes on sale? We’ve had information on crash testing, thousands of images of cars, videos of the factory, announcements of beta production, updates on when the car will go into production, news conferences, price details, information on its supercharger capabilities, there’s even a range estimate on the web page – This car has not even entered production yet.

Compare Tesla to Nissan what do we actually know about the Leaf 2.0? Both the model 3 and the Leaf 2.0 will likely be selling in reasonable numbers by Dec-2017. We essentially know nothing about the leaf and almost everything you could want to know about the model 3.

Just a few small details…
1) Prices of Options
2) Standard and Upgraded Range Options (248-348?)
3) Will their be any Options Packages?
4) How long with the car take to Charge?
5) What is the maximum Charging kWh
6) (100kw,150kWh, …400kwH?)

We know very little about the car

5. Wait until a couple weeks after Trump’s first 100 days. News media will be starved for something to write about. Free advertising.

Trump is a carnival ride that NEVER ends, so no, no lack of news there.

Ain’t THAT the truth!

I was just going with “it’s not ready to show yet”.

And, what reason is that realistic?

There’s no upside to revealing anymore. Its not going to improve sales for the Model S/X, and it could cause buyers to put off purchases while waiting for the Model 3. Best case, Model 3 production is not fully ramped up till next year. Tesla can already sell as many Model 3’s as they can build, as soon as they’re ready, so no upside there either.


How many of you mulled the idea of just buying the S/X now, instead of waiting for the 3? I know I did. I think its working.

Wife and babk manager bothsaid “No”

#5 – The Tesla engineers just tore down their first Chevy Bolt and it’s “pencils up” again.

Here, let me add that /sarc flag for ya…

That’s a very funny joke. Yea, because it was GM who built the Model S in 2012 (not Tesla), and took leadership in the long range EV sector, 4 years before the Bolt….


A $75k Tesla vs a $37k Bolt means leadership might be moving GMs way. Until the III arrives. If the III is as good as most of us hope it is.

Biting down on pencils, to keep from laughing in someone’s face, is NO reason for delay!


5. It’s late.

#5. Crash testing shows that it (Model 3) didn’t ace everything. So, back to final tweaking again.. (after IIHS ragged on Tesla’s non-best rating on the Model S).

#1. Redo of Model 3 trunk…more hatch-backish.

#2. Model Y (SUV version of Model 3) surprise reveal at same time of Model 3 full reveal.

#3 Glass….electro tint.

#4 Need Model S bumb to keep it special..capacitor boost & titanium linkage … sick 2.99sec

Musk Mic drop…

“titanium linkage ”

For what? drive shaft?

Or battery contact?

I certainly hope you don’t mean battery contact because that would be the wrong metal.

#2 very likely indeed.

“Some Model 3 features may leapfrog the S and X, rendering them stale already.”

I agree with this. I’m thinking some really cool HUD things integrated with auto pilot….. And faster charging because it is a way more efficient car on a miles per kwh rating.

ie too much to resist.

I’m thinking the new battery cells will be built into S and X by the time the 3 rolls out.

Nobody in Tesla’s crosshairs puts out a smaller, less expensive model that has features more advanced that it’s larger, more expensive models.

Er – duh. S is due for some upgrades and possibly some trim changes, X will get any HUD or “better” tech, as in Autopilot, software upgrades or anything else…That could be had in any M3.

6. It’s quiet…..too quiet!

The lack of leaks is driving me MAD… 😀

Kudos to the folks at Tesla for not giving into temptation. Even ‘ElonsVelvetJacket’ has been silent.

Tesla built 2 demo cars for last year’s initial reveal party. No photos came out before the event (pundits claimed there wouldn’t even be a car at the reveal, just photoshops.) No spy shots until after the reveal, even though they HAD to test those things somewhere before sticking customers into them.

Tesla did Mule testing of their new batteries, motors, and inverters they created just for the Model 3. No mule photos exist anywhere.

Tesla built Alpha’s for crash testing, then crash tested them sometime before Feb. No Photos.

Tesla began Pilot Model 3 production on their assembly line Feb 20th, producing Beta candidate cars. Still no photos.

Given their record of keeping things under wraps with the TM3 until the instant they are ready to do a reveal, I don’t know how many photos we are going to see before the reveal. It might not be any until weeks before the first ones come off the assembly line.

You can make a mule with underneath changes and send it out and no one even knows it’s changed.

But to test the Model S they need mules which represent the car’s physical shape. You can test an inverter on an existing platform but you can’t test a suspension on a car with a vastly different wheelbase and size.

I don’t expect any photos before the next reveal, simply because I expect the next reveal to happen soon and to precede their road testing. They know they can’t do full testing without the cars being seen so they’ll show them before sending them out.


As an engineer, I’d like to comment on #4. When people think of technology, these days, they tend to envision high tech displays and software. Advanced technology could also mean electric motors and inverters which are more efficient, more compact, more reliable AND easier to manufacture. Advanced technology could also apply to mundane things like chassis, suspension, brakes, steering, etc. Lastly but most importantly, Tesla is using the most advanced manufacturing technology which is essential for high rates of production and much lower cost.

The most important Model 3 technology which needs to be transferred to Model S/X is the new 2170 cells. It’s a huge cost reduction.

The 2170 cells in the Models S/X could also increase range, reduce weight and possibly increase the already crazy awesome 0-60 times.

#6- The Model 3 is actually going to be a jet car and they are awaiting FAA certification. Oh yeah and the price will now be $25,000.

Seriously, likely the car is just behind schedule and probably over budget.

Nearly everything in the world is either behind schedule or over budget (or both), so neither would be a surprise. But being over budget wouldn’t stop them from doing a reveal. Burning money doesn’t impact the reveal date at all. Zero impact. And likely neither would be being behind schedule. They could just fake it, the way Steve Jobs made the ultra-buggy first iPhone look like it worked when it was not ready at all: “Jobs had a number of demo units onstage with him to manage this problem. If memory ran low on one, he would switch to another while the first was restarted.” “Hours of trial and error had helped the iPhone team develop what engineers called “the golden path,” a specific set of tasks, performed in a specific way and order, that made the phone look as if it worked.” http://gizmodo.com/the-iphones-first-demo-was-buggy-as-hell-1441324523 Remember, Tesla has already driven people around in demo cars about a YEAR ago. They can already functionally demo them. There simply is no question about that. They can demo them any time they want. A reveal now would just expose the design changes since then for the cameras. And the shiny new designs don’t even… Read more »

You wrote a lot of stuff, but not sure what you meant to say. It seems you’re saying that Silicon Valley routinely runs over budget, pushes product to market before it’s really ready and uses dog and pony shows to swindle people. What does this mean for Tesla? “The” Silicon Valley car company?

Or is it just, Tesla’s behind and “you can’t see until it’s finished”?

Dav8or — I just explained why you are wrong to claim that being over budget would FORCE them to delay a Reveal Marketing Event. It wouldn’t

Then I explained why you are wrong to claim that being behind schedule would FORCE them to delay a reveal either.

If anything isn’t clear, I’m happy to explain it to you. Just let me know what parts are confusing you.

Posters here would be wise to consider Elon’s number one go-to. That would be “first principles”.

#7- Tesla will lose $20k on each car, so postponing introduction will strengthen their financial position.

Only a $20 K loss per car? Then Tesla should get the new Bean Counters on board to figure out how to make up the shortfall on Bigly increasing the Volume Model 3 production!

And the #1 reason is – The interior looks horrible and they are still trying to figure out how to fix it..

#8 — How do you keep an anti-Tesla troll in suspense?

(see next post)

LMFAO Nix!!!!!

Another one of out existing loser trolls posting under another new username and you spanked them, er sven.