At first pass, Tesla’s recent announcement to stop accepting orders for their cheapest Model S, the 40 kWH variant, looks all too much like an April Fool’s joke gone terribly wrong.
Unfortunately, it’s not a joke, nor is it funny. As of Monday, April 1, Tesla has confirmed they are no longer building their most affordable model, the 40 kWh Model S. This move came after sales reports cited that only 4% of Model S buyers were opting for the cheaper variant, forcing Tesla to cancel production. As of this writing, the 40 kWh Model S is still available for pre-order on Tesla’s website, for their normal retail price of $52,400. “Customers are voting with their wallet that they want a car that gives them the freedom to travel long distances when needed.”, a Tesla spokesperson cited. Whether that will continue to be the case, only time will tell.
As of now, buyers who pre-ordered the 40 kWh Model S before production was stopped will instead receive a crippled version of the more expensive 60 kWh model. We say crippled because the car will delivered with a battery capable of 60 kWh, but custom installed software will limit the car to using owning 40 kWh.
This news comes after analysts are reporting that Tesla may show its first ever profit in the upcoming quarter.