Tesla Discontinuing Model S 60 & 60D

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Tesla announced yesterday that it is discontinuing the Tesla Model S 60 and 60D.


The more affordable 60 and 60D versions of the Model S were always a bit of an oddity since their introduction a year ago, as they utilized the same battery pack as the 75 kWh Model S but with a software limitation that scaled the pack down to 60 kWh of usable capacity. The official statement from Tesla on the move indicates that most customers ended up buying the “equivalent” to the 75 kWh version:

“One year ago, we introduced the Model S 60 kWh battery as a more affordable option to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles. However, most customers ended up buying an equivalent to the Model S 75 kWh. To simplify the ordering process for our customers, we will be removing the 60 kWh option from our lineup.

“Customers who still want the opportunity to own a 60 kWh Model S will have until April 16, 2017 to place their order. Any 60 kWh Model S will have the ability to upgrade their battery to 75 kWh via an over the air update.”

The move comes as Tesla is looking for opportunities to cut unnecessary capital spending. “Giving away” 15 kWh of batteries in a 60 kWh version that may never turn into revenue from an upgrade to 75 kWh falls in line there.

Beyond that, the lower starting price point of the 60 kWh versions could compete with and cannibalize sales of the much anticipated, high-volume Model 3. With production potentially starting in a few months, and ramping up later this year, Tesla may be looking to better distinguish the two in terms of pricing and range.

Another possibility is that the move is timed with the introduction of the 2170 cells being produced at the Gigafactory for Model S packs. As Tesla standardizes its offerings around these next-gen battery cells, offering lower-range, lower-price battery options may make less sense to the company.

While it is difficult to tell exactly why Tesla is discontinuing the software-limited version of the Model S, the company has made it clear that the main priority across the company is delivering Model 3 on time, at quality. Here’s to hoping this small move supports that objective.

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Kyle Field

I'm a tech geek passionately in search of actionable ways to reduce the negative impact my life has on the planet, save money and reduce stress. Live intentionally, make conscious decisions, love more, act responsibly, play. The more you know, the less you need. As an activist investor, Kyle owns long term holdings in Tesla, Lightning eMotors, Arcimoto, and SolarEdge.

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