Australian website Car Advice is reporting that "Thanks to the wonder of timezones, Australian hopefuls will be the first in the world to book a $1,500 (AUD) reservation for the coming Tesla Model 3 all-electric sedan."
While Australian may be among the first to reserve the Model 3, they won't be the first to take delivery of Tesla's new electric car. In fact, Australia will likely be among the last to see actual deliveries of the 3.
Car Advice states:
Tesla Model 3 - Online Orders Start March 31st
"Buyers unable to make it to a Tesla centre – or who simply prefer to avoid the queue – will wait until around 2:30pm on April 1 (AEDT), when the still-unseen Model 3 is scheduled to be unveiled."
"All of this means that those lining up at Tesla retail centres will not have seen the Model 3’s final styling before laying down their $1,500 reservation. Likewise, even those that wait for the unveiling will not know everything – including final local pricing – with Tesla already confirming that it will hand down more information over time."
Ultimately when the Model 3 does physically arrive in Australia, it likely won't have anything to do with priority sequence of the reservation, or if one was an existing Model S (or X) owner already.
Given the logistics (and known history) of importing EVs to Australia by their manufacturers, the first Model 3s will probably be delivered in a group batch - which likely will include all of the Model 3 trim/option levels that Tesla is able to produce at the time when they decide to allocate production to Australia.
Electric cars don't sell well in Australia, largely due to the high price tags they carry. An entry-level Model S 70 is "$110,000 in Australia before on-road costs," according to car Advice and the Model 3 is expected to be in the $60,000-$70,000 range when it launches in Australia.
The article on the reservation timing suggests the Model 3 is expected to see first Australian deliveries sometime in 2018, but realistically this seems unlikely given the lag times we have seen for plug-ins in the past and Tesla's own stated staggered rollout for the Model 3 (beginning with the US West Coast and ending the fringe/RHD markets); we'd be more comfortable estimating 2019.
Source: Car Advice