However, if you're willing to pay more...
The Model 3 is vital to Tesla's future. Despite making it through "production hell" and finally reaching many hopeful customers, Tesla is still apparently experiencing delivery issues. Bloomberg reports that there are many would-be customers who have waited nearly three years for their Model 3s to arrive after placing their $1,000 deposits. Tesla happily took their money and has yet to deliver the product.
There are actually a few thousand depositors in this situation and many are preparing to give up. In fact, in light of CEO Elon Musk's announcement that up to 3,000 Tesla employees (some 7 percent of its workforce) will soon be laid off in order to cut costs, the chances of Model 3 delivery time could decrease. These hopeful owners are simply running out of patience.
One depositor put down the money in the summer of 2017 and, so far, no Model 3. In the meantime, this individual has purchased two Toyota Priuses, one new and one used, spending a total of around $41,000 for both. A Tesla representative recently called to say this person was next on the list for a Model 3, but its price tag went up to around $48,000.
"We have been forgiving of Tesla because they've been on the forefront of electric cars, but they need to get their act together before they lose people like us," the depositor said last week. "If another company comes up with a car similar in mileage range and style to Tesla, we may not wait."
Another factor that could hinder future Model 3 sales is that Tesla will soon be shipping more expensive variants to customers in both the US and Europe. These are not the $35,000 base versions thousands of people were hoping to buy.
Other customers, however, are searching for ways to fund these more expensive Model 3s. There's even a term for it: the "Tesla stretch." They're pushing their budgets to get what they've wanted for so long. "I feel like it was almost a bait-and-switch kind of deal," one buyer said after forking over $58,000.
The current Tesla Model 3 sales situation boils down to this: if you're willing to pay thousands above the base price, you'll have a greater chance of getting a car. If not, you'll be left behind.