Everything we know about the Tesla 'Model 2'

By Gabe Rodriguez Morrison
Tesla's working on a $25k vehicle
Tesla's working on a $25k vehicle

The Tesla Model 2 aims to make electric vehicle ownership more affordable. Tesla probably won't use the name "Model 2" because it implies a smaller version of the Model 3 when it will really be a more economic version. Tesla's target is a $25k car, but the Model 3 was also supposed to be $35k but ended up being more expensive. The Model 3 currently sits at just under $47k in the US.

When Tesla created the Model 3, they essentially built a scaled-down, more efficient version of the Model S by removing features that were more expensive or hard to manufacture. Many of the switches, vents, and features were either simplified or completely removed, including the instrument cluster.

This includes replacing physical controls with on screen controls, like the handle for the glove box, mirror adjustment buttons, windshield wiper controls and many others.

Other controls were simplified to reduce complexity and therefore cost. Some examples include the simplified vent system and steering wheel buttons. The interior and exterior door handles were also redesigned to reduce the amount of moving parts.

Back in 2016 when the Model 3 was unveiled it wasn’t entirely clear which features were cost-cutting measures and which were feature iterations and would become standard in all future Teslas.

When Tesla debuted the new Model S in 2021 it became clearer which features may have been cost-cutting measures. We saw a lot of Model 3 features carry over to the redesigned Model S, such as a horizontal center screen, one continuous vent with on screen controls, but not every feature made it over.

These were seen as the compromises Tesla made to create a vehicle that is cheaper to manufacture when compared to the Model S.

The Model 3 doesn't have an air suspension, cooled seats, a rear screen, or an instrument cluster. It also has a slightly smaller center screen. So what more can Tesla remove or simplify from a Model 3 to create a more affordable, scaled-down vehicle?

Tesla would likely keep all software-only features since they don’t add much to the cost of the vehicle. Some possibilities may include fewer speakers, removing heated seats in the rear, removal of wireless chargers, and removal of the glass roof. Removing any cameras or the FSD computer is unlikely since the FSD package is profitable for Tesla and there are also safety features that depend on that hardware.

It’s possible that Tesla's Model 2 has transformed into the supposed Robotaxi mentioned at the Giga Rodeo Event. Elon has previously talked about creating a car without steering wheels or pedals, which would be fitting for a fully autonomous vehicle.

At Battery Day, Tesla said that standard range vehicles and future models will use lithium iron phosphate batteries. LFP batteries are cheaper to produce and have some advantages and disadvantages when compared to nickel batteries. Tesla would likely use the 4680 LFP battery for the Model 2. This would make the vehicle smaller and lighter, but may also offer less range.

Tesla's 4680 battery
Tesla's 4680 battery

Tesla’s 4680 cell is named after its dimension, 46mm x 80mm. They are much cheaper to manufacture, producing 5x more energy, 16% more range, and 6x more power, making them far more economic than traditional batteries. Using 4680 batteries, the Model 2 is expected to have a travel range of 250 to 300 miles.

Tesla will use a structural 4680 cell pack in a single body cast to manufacture the Model 2 as efficiently as possible. This along with advanced robotics will help Tesla achieve economies of scale and mass-manufacture their most affordable car yet.

In May 2022, during the Financial Times 'Future of the Car' interview (video), Elon stated that there is some probability that Tesla would make a car smaller than the Model 3, leaving the possibility open for both, a smaller Model 3 and a Tesla Robotaxi.

Don't expect the “Model 2” anytime soon, Elon has talked about Tesla finishing the CyberTruck this year and starting production in 2023. Tesla also has the Roadster and Semi to produce, which are very likely to be ahead of the Model 2.

By that time, we may see drastic improvements in FSD that could warrant a fully autonomous Robotaxi. I wouldn't expect the Model 2 before 2024 at very best, but we could see prototypes before then.

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Tesla Reduces Price of FSD Subscription to $99 Per Month [Subscriptions Now Available in Canada Too!]

By Not a Tesla App Staff

Tesla just dropped its FSD subscription pricing dramatically in the U.S., lowering the cost from $199 to $99 per month. However, not everyone is thrilled with the new pricing.

For owners who bought the Enhanced Autopilot package for $6,000 USD, Tesla offered a lower-priced FSD subscription of $99, instead of $199. However, with this new FSD price reduction, EAP owners are no longer receiving a discount.

FSD Subscription Expansion

Currently, the FSD subscription is only available in the U.S., but plans for expansion are underway. Tesla's Rohan Patel recently announced that the subscription will soon be available in Canada, alongside the introduction of an annual plan for Premium Connectivity. 

This expansion into the Canadian market is anticipated to follow a similar pricing strategy, adjusted for the currency exchange rate, possibly setting the cost at approximately $140 CAD per month.

Update: Tesla has just announced that FSD subscriptions are now available in Canada! What’s even more surprising is the unexpectedly low subscription price of $99 CAD. Tesla took to X to announce the availability in Canada but unfortunately didn’t reveal any additional information regarding the subscriptions.

Is Buying FSD Still Worth It?

Despite the lowered subscription price, the outright purchase price for FSD remains steep at $12,000. This price point equates to subscribing to the service for over 10 years. Given that the average length of car ownership in the U.S. is about 8 years, this makes the current price of buying FSD unattractive to most. The saving grace of buying FSD is that you know what you're paying for the life of the vehicle and can avoid any potential subscription price increases.

Temporary Reduction or Long-term Strategy?

Tesla has not confirmed whether the price reduction is a temporary promotional tactic or a permanent adjustment. The timing coincides with Tesla's release of FSD v12 and its trial offer, suggesting that the company is keen on encouraging more drivers to experience FSD. This approach not only boosts user engagement but also accelerates the volume of data Tesla can collect to improve the system.

FSD With Referral Credits

Although Tesla hasn't adjusted the price of buying FSD, it is tweaking its referral program to accommodate the new price. Three months of FSD are now available through Tesla's referral program for 6,000 credits, reduced from the previous 12,000 credits.

Tesla's reduction in FSD in the U.S. and its planned expansion into Canada reflect a strategic initiative to make FSD more accessible and financially attractive to a broader audience. There's no doubt this change will increase the number of FSD subscriptions, but it'll be interesting to see how much. To break even, Tesla would need to double the number of subscriptions, but they likely have their eyes set much higher.

If you currently subscribe to FSD, Tesla has automatically reduced future payments to the lower $99 price point.

Tesla Cybertruck to Receive Additional Features in Upcoming Update

By Not a Tesla App Staff

Tesla frequently introduces new models or trim levels before all the software features are available. This situation also applies to the Cybertruck, where several features are still in development.

In the 2024.8 update, Tesla added a handful of features to help the Cybertruck catch up in the software department, adding features such as Reset Tire Mileage, Rear Passenger Headphones, Auto Wipers and others. Tesla also added a Cybertruck exclusive feature that sets off the truck's alarm if the trailer is unhitched from the vehicle.

However, Tesla continues to improve Cybertruck's software. The company is planning an upcoming update that will let the truck charge faster and add Tesla's convenient cabin overheat protection feature.

According to Tesla's SVP of powertrain and energy, Drew Baglino, the Cybertruck's charging speed is about to be upgraded. This software update, slated for release later this quarter, is set to substantially improve the Cybertruck's charging curve and unlock faster charging times for owners. Baglino said the update will "let the Cybertruck get 154 miles of charge in just 15 minutes." That's a 20% increase over the truck's current 128 miles in 15 minutes.

Early reports on the Cybertruck's 4680 cells revealed a somewhat disappointing charging curve. The truck's charging speed would start at about 250kW, then drop off to about 150kW at ~40%. It would then level off at 75-80kW for the remainder of the charge.

It seems Tesla was being careful with the Cybertruck's new battery pack, but now, the company is ready to unlock additional throughput.

This fits Tesla's usual approach. The company likes to start conservatively and then improve its vehicles over time.

Cabin Overheat Protection

Another feature that's set to arrive on the Cybertruck is Cabin Overheat Protection (COP), according to the Cybertruck's program manager. This feature which keeps the cabin from overheating has been available in other models for several years, but it has yet to be made available for the Cybertruck.

In 2022, Tesla added the ability to customize the temperature at which COP would turn on. Users can now choose COP to activate at 90, 95 or 100º Fahrenheit. The Cybertruck's COP is expected to match the same features available in other models.

Given that Tesla's SVP and program manager have officially commented on these upcoming features, it may not be long before we see them available in an upcoming update.

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