A baby Tesla is coming to town.
Tesla Motors confirmed late on Tuesday that its rumored third-generation car will be called, appropriately enough, the Model 3. The car will be about 20 percent smaller than the Model S, and cost roughly half as much. Tesla is aiming for the $35,000 range with the Model 3, which aims to take on the BMW 3 Series when deliveries begin in 2017.
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This news comes despite the fact that Tesla's newest vehicle, the crossover Model X, has yet to appear on the roads (the company is scheduled to deliver the first examples to buyers later this year). , which broke the story, Tesla will formally reveal the Model 3 in 2016. (Auto Express also has images of a possible Model III, but Tesla says those are based on early mock-ups.)
What's with the boring, numerical name? Legal problems. Tesla Motors head Elon Musk told Auto Express that since the company already makes a Model S and Model X, it seemed only natural to build a Model E (spell it out)—but Ford says it owns that name and sued.