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Tesla Model Y Standard Range makes a surprise launch, 7-seat option debuts

CEO Elon Musk originally said the Model Y Standard Range was dead. Now it's for sale and far cheaper than other variants.

Tesla Model Y Standard Range
Red costs an extra $2,000, as usual.

Surprise! The Tesla Model Y Standard Range is here. The electric SUV variant, which CEO Elon Musk originally said wouldn't make it to production, launched on Tesla's website late Thursday afternoon. In addition to the Standard Range model, Tesla also rolled out the SUV's seven-seat option for those in need of a third row.

Crucially, the Model Y Standard Range drops the entry price for the electric SUV to $41,990 before other taxes and fees to become the least expensive Model Y on sale right now. It's still more expensive than the Model 3, however, which starts at $37,790. Previously, anyone shopping Tesla's electric SUV was forced to choose between the Model Y Long Range at $49,990 or the Model Y Performance, which costs $10,000 more.

When Musk first said the Standard Range model wouldn't make it to production, the CEO cited an "unacceptably low" range rating, which he estimated to fall under 250 miles. Indeed, the Model Y in Standard Range form features an estimated 244 miles of range. The automaker must have decided that was good enough, but we have no other clue as to why Tesla decided to push on with this variant after all. Tesla does not operate a public relations department to field requests for comment.

Flipping through the options available for the new Model Y base variant shows a set of 20-inch wheels, a tow hitch and Tesla's Full Self-Driving system, which also costs $10,000, just like in other vehicles. The new option available for both the Standard Range and Long Range is the seven-seat arrangement, which Tesla has long promised. Now, buyers can equip the car with a third row of seats and the company's site confirms a handful of features with the selection. "Easy Entry" to the third row, USB-C charging, a sliding second row and fold-flat capability for both rows of seats, with power releases, are all included. Selecting the third row of seats adds $3,000 to the Model Y's price. If you need a Model Y Performance in your life, know that it's a five-seat-only affair.

Both the Standard Range and seven-seat option say orders are about two to five weeks out for delivery.

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