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by Doug MacDougall

Electric vehicle fans will have to be patient for a proper understanding of the upcoming Tesla Model 3, following a reminder this week from CEO Elon Musk that its unveiling will be a drawn-out affair.

Speaking at an event at Tesla’s base in Chambourcy, France, Musk confirmed Tesla would take a drip-feed approach to the unveiling, beginning in March – much akin to the Model X SUV’s introduction.

“The first pictures of the Model 3 will be end of March” Musk said. “I am being a little coy here – we are not going to show everything about the Model 3 until a lot closer to production time.”

Tesla has confirmed the Model 3 won’t be on the road until mid-2017, with its production reliant on batteries to be made at the manufacturer’s Gigafactory, which is still under construction.

But what remains a mystery is the finer technical details of a car that will be pitted against Europe’s finest in the BMW 3 Series, the Mercedes C-Class and Audi’s A4.

tesla-models-p85d

Above: the Tesla Model S

It’s unclear whether the Model 3 will get the same 90kWh battery that’s used in the Model S and Model X, perhaps in de-tuned form (although a Model 3P90D would be a clear M3 and C 63 rival in the acceleration stakes), or a new unit.

In any case, the car will likely have the same or better driving range as its larger siblings.

Other speculation suggests the car’s smaller dimensions could point to a completely new platform to that of its larger siblings. Regardless, expect serious performance numbers from potentially rear-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive variants.

As reported last year, the car is likely to hit the US market at $35,000 ($49,000 AUD), before rebates or credit offered by US and State governments for the purchase of electric vehicles.

MORE: Tesla news, reviews, pricing and specs




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