Tesla Quietly Drops Model X 60D from its Lineup
The 75D becomes new entry-level variant of the Model Xby Kirby Garlitos, on
Elon Musk’s tweet about the unexpected product launch on October 17 may have grabbed the headlines the past few days, but something just as important has happened in Tesla, and it’s about the Model X, or more specifically, the 60D variant of the electric people mover. Apparently, and very quietly, Tesla has dropped the Model X 60D, leaving the 75D variant as the new entry-level version of the Model X.
Tesla has yet to come out with an explanation behind scrapping the Model X 60D a mere three months after introducing it, but given the company’s motives of pushing hard and trying to maximize its sales efforts, the 60D probably wasn’t selling as well as Tesla thought it would. That could have prompted the company to cut the cord on the variant to streamline production, leaving potential customers with no other option but to pay a higher base price of $85,000 before tax credits to own the Model X. It’s an added cost of roughly $11,000, but Tesla could be banking on the idea that if somebody could afford 60D and its base level price tag of $74,000, it has the financial capacity to pay another $11,000 to get the extra features, including “unlocking” the battery’s capacity to have a minimum range of 237 miles.
It’s unclear if Tesla is going to shed light on the decision to ax the 60D at the product launch Musk announced over the weekend but you can be sure that the question is going to be asked because of the nature by which Tesla killed off the variant in the middle of the night so soon after touting it to the world. In any case, you can chalk this one up to the variant probably not living up to the expectations Tesla had for it and the company cutting the cord quickly to streamline its own production volume.
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Business is business
The decision to drop the Model X 60D was surprising at first glance given the variant’s rather short-lived life. But, if this was strictly a business move aimed at removing variants that weren’t selling enough models for Tesla, then the decision makes sense. Maybe Tesla thought that it had created enough of a differentiation between the 60D and the 75D to justify their prices and then realized later on that the 75D provided much better value for the customer’s money anyway.
Prospective customers may have seen that too and those who ended up buying the 75D point opted for that variant simply because for an extra $10,000 or so, they receive more in the way of features and offerings from the electric crossover. Whatever the case may be, I think it’s safe to say that Tesla’s decision to drop the 60D variant of the Model X is all about making sure that it didn’t have models go to waste and that it can have a far more efficient production run of the electric crossover without having to worry about the entry level version not getting enough attention from customers.
As I said, I expect some kind of clarity on this issue during Tesla’s product launch on the October 17. If Tesla doesn’t bring it up, you can be sure that somebody will.
Read our full review on the 2016 Tesla Model X here.