Tesla to Unveil New Model 3 with Elon Musk in China, Says Report

Above: ‘Highland’ Model 3 concept imagined

In the first visit to Tesla’s Shanghai factory in years, CEO Elon Musk is expected to offer an early preview of the company’s updated Model 3 sedan, according to sources who wished to remain anonymous, reports Bloomberg.

The unveiling, which is set to take place on Thursday, will showcase the first off-the-line prototypes of the refurbished Model 3. The revamped vehicle, initially introduced as Tesla’s first mass-market sedan, boasts a longer and more athletic build than its predecessor and an upgraded interior design. These new features were earlier reported by Bloomberg. 

The decision to refresh the Model 3 comes at a crucial juncture for Tesla, as it confronts mounting challenges in the Chinese market, its largest sales territory after the United States. Tesla has barely altered the Model 3 since its production inception in 2017, and local competitors, particularly BYD Co., have steadily been gaining market share. In response, Tesla has instigated significant price cuts, sparking a pricing war and causing industry-wide profitability pressures.

This week marks Musk’s first official visit to China in three years, commencing in Beijing before proceeding to the Shanghai plant. Musk held a meeting with Jin Zhuanglong, China’s minister for industry and information technology, in the nation’s capital on Wednesday, prior to his tour of the Shanghai factory.

Images of Musk and high-ranking executive Tom Zhu were seen on social media today:

More details regarding the redesigned Model 3 are expected to emerge as Tesla nears its final trial production in Shanghai. The prototype known as “Highland” has been spotted in the streets of California, with both front and rear covered up hiding the new cosmetic design. The turn signal and gear selector stalks are said to disappear in this refresh, again making Tesla production even more minimalistic.

Stay tuned for updates, folks!