The long anticipated electric car for the masses is here, Tesla Model 3, and Elon Musk confirms it’s headed for South Africa!

He wanted to create a futuristic electric car that everyone can afford and that relegates petrol engines to the history books forever, and he’s done it, the Tesla Model 3 is here. Elon Musk, a South African born entrepreneur is said to have started in cars what the iPhone started in phones. This isn’t just an evolution. It’s a revolution of the worldwide car industry. It will change the way in which we will see cars forever. In a few years, driving a petrol car will be like riding a horse in the days of the Model T Ford.

A Brief History…

Tesla is named after the late great Nicola Tesla who invented:

  • Alternating Current and
  • The Electric Motor

The very same electric motor concept that sits tucked between the rear wheels of all Tesla cars.

Elon Musk is a little bit of a maverick entrepreneur and co-founder of Tesla with JB Straubel. Elon started his road to changing the world after selling PayPal for $1.5b in 2002. PayPal was set-up in the mid 1990’s. Elon’s believes that 3 things would most effect humanity in the future:

  • The Internet
  • Making life multi-planetary
  • Sustainable energy

Internet company PayPal was the stepping stone that started the realization of Elon Musks vision. Tesla is part of the sustainable energy vision.


Tesla Master Plan

Tesla’s plan is very simple according to Elon Musk. Step 1: Create a low volume, high end car to break into the car industry. Step2: make a lower end high volume car that would be positioned for the masses. First, Tesla released the Roadster which showed that an electric sports car could be sexy and fast. The Roadster costed $100k and was to most people a second car. Step 2, Tesla produced the Model S and the Model X, a high end sedan and family car.

The Model S is one of the most aerodynamic cars on the market. The door handles even recess into the body. One of the biggest benefits of an electric car is the size of the motor. The electric motor is no bigger than a gearbox of a petrol driven car. This along with the flat battery that forms the cars floor, gives the Model S much more room, which gives it 7 seats.

The first ever premium production sedan run purely on electricity, the Tesla Model S

Tesla Model S

The Tesla Model S is designed to go really fast, travel far and not use any fossil fuels. Elon Musks vision with the Model S was to ‘create an electric car that is the best car in the world’. Even among its petrol rivals.  The Tesla Model S goes from 0-100km/h in under 6s and has a range of between 335km – 426km. Compare the Nissan Leaf with a range of only c200km. From a competitor point of view, the Model S has competition which are the likes of a high end BMW and Aston Martin.

And now the much anticipated Tesla Model 3

Tesla Model 3

With over 325,000 pre-orders world-wide, Tesla will begin delivery of the Teslas Model 3 in 2017. The Model 3 is being built in a mega-factory (a former Toyota and General Motors site) just outside Silicon Valley. With a range of 346km and 0-100km/h in under 6s. Very fast for this segment of car. And has the range for the Tesla Model S. The price tag isn’t very low at $35,000 (R520,000). With very low maintenance costs of an electric car, this may very well be worth it.

Some nay-sayers believe South Africa is not yet ready for an electric car, instead of complaining, let’s embrace change. I for one can’t wait for the Tesla Model 3 to hit South Africa’s shores. If acceleration of the internet in South Africa is anything to go by, I don’t believe a word of those nay sayers! We rock! Just ask Elon Musk, who tweeted that he is adding South Africa to the list of destinations for the Model 3. South Africans can reserve their orders by making a $1000 payment on Teslas website.

In Elon Musks words: Taking oil out of the ground and burning it, is like playing Russian Roulette with the atmosphere. Lets stop. The day the Model 3 hits SA shores, I will be converted…