Model 3 price hype helps Tesla shares bounce

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Elon Musk says a new dual-motor setup will be used for the upcoming all-wheel drive and performance Model 3's.

The dual motor AWD version will cost an extra $5,000 but it produces 310 miles of range, a top speed of 140mph and a 0-60mph sprint time of 4.5 seconds. Mr. Musk said on Twitter that the vehicle could accelerate to 60 miles per hour in 3.5 seconds, had a top speed of 155 m.p.h. and could go 310 miles on a single battery charge. If Model 3 is suddenly a high-end vehicle, then Tesla, whose other offerings start around that price, would be more comparable to Maserati than to Chevy, which is producing a $36,620 electric auto.

However, Musk made the bold claim that the Model 3 would be 15 per cent quicker than the BMW M3, that it would have better handling than the famed German performance saloon, and that it could beat "anything in its class on track".

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The new Model 3 was announced by CEO Elon Musk on Twitter.

On Monday, the company faced a new setback with a critical Consumer Reports evaluation of the Model 3. Both the Model S and Model X have had performance versions, and now the Model 3 is the same.

Musk unveiled specifications for a faster and more powerful version of the Model 3 in a series of tweets over the weekend.

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Musk, whose refusal to answer analysts' questions on a call this month also hurt company shares, said in his weekend tweets that Tesla had to focus first on delivering Model 3s that were priced higher than the base version, or it would "die". Takes 0-60mph to 4.5 sec & top speed to 140 miles per hour.

The auto is seen as crucial to Tesla's profitability at a time when it is battling to reverse production shortfalls, confronting reports of crashes involving its vehicles and facing increased skepticism over its finances. It will cost $78,000, more than double the $35,000 base-model starting price discussed into the run-up before the electric car's deliveries started past year. These numbers are designed for the needs of speed enthusiasts.

The increasingly expensive configurations for the Model 3 are planned steps, if somewhat counter-intuitive ones, towards Mr Musk's vision of Tesla Inc as a mass-production player with vehicles affordable to a broader swath of buyers.

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Tesla' stock, which shed almost three per cent in Friday's trading session, is down more than to 11 per cent year to date. On Thursday, Goldman Sachs analysts said it predicted Tesla would need about $10.5 billion in fresh capital through 2020 in order to meets those goals.