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Tesla Kills ‘Affordable’ 60 kWh Model S as Model 3 Approaches

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Tesla is taking its most affordable model off the market next month. In order to “simplify the ordering process,” the automaker has decided to abandon the Model S 60 and 60D, according to its official newsletter.

It hasn’t even been a full year since the 60kWh trim returned after the more-expensive Model S 70 replaced it in 2015. Good riddance.

With the Model 3 right around the corner, it doesn’t really make sense to keep the Model S 60. Despite selling the base trim several thousand dollars less than the 75, it’s the exact same car. The only appreciable difference is that the 75 kWh battery has been digitally limited to perform as if it’s a 60 kWh unit.

So, Tesla only makes the big bucks when customers decide to pay extra to “unlock” the EV’s full capabilities and effectively convert it into a 75 through a software update. However, when the Model 3 comes out at roughly half the price and with an almost identical range, nobody in their right mind would opt for the 60. Cheapskates will follow the savings and everyone else will just rationalize a more expensive purchase.

In the brief emailed newsletter, Tesla even admitted that the 60 wasn’t selling as well as anticipated and “most customers ended up buying an equivalent to the Model S 75kWh.” However, Tesla may still lose a handful of budget-minded shoppers in the period between the Model S 60’s death and the Model 3’s birth. There has to be six or seven penny-pinching upper-middle-class types who don’t want to wait for the company’s upcoming $35,000 EV but can’t convince themselves to spend one red cent above $68,000 — before the juicy federal tax credit for green cars, of course.

Consumers have until April 16th to decide if they want the Model S 60, so you still have just under a month to make a huge mistake. After that, the entry Model S will be the 75 kWh version, starting at a pre-credit price of $77,800.

Deliveries of reserved Model 3s should begin at the very end of this year and continue well into 2018.

[Image: Tesla Motors]

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