Electric car maker's next model will have a stronger design than its siblings, if the bonnet lines on this first image are anything to go by

The Tesla Model Y will have a more striking design than its siblings that negates the use of door mirrors, if a new preview pictures is anything to go by.

Displayed at the brand's Annual Shareholder Meeting in California, it suggests that the small SUV will have a bonnet with strong lines and bulging arches.

There are no mirrors on the car's doors, suggesting it'll use a camera-based system with interior screens displaying the view of the back.

Currently, global laws require the fitment of mirrors, but the Model Y isn't due to go on sale for several more years - CEO Elon Musk hinted that it'd make it to market around late 2019 or early 2020 - meaning the laws could be changed by then to allow this design.

Musk has previously confirmed that the Model Y (imagined by Autocar in the picture below) will be based on the Model 3 saloon's platform. The Model Y will come with a significantly more advanced supercomputer than current Teslas, which is expected to advance Tesla's current Autopilot technology by some margin. Currently, the system can control a car's steering, throttle and brakes in certain motorway scenarios.

Following the Model Y, Tesla will produce an electric cargo van, pick-up truck and minibus, all based on the platform of the Model X SUV.

Tesla's shift from producing only cars to also launching commercial vehicles will come as part of its 'Master Plan, Part Deux', a strategy that also outlines ambitions to take the lead with autonomous technology and transform the public transport sector. It was first published last year, ten years after Tesla's first master plan, which previewed the subsequent launches of the Tesla Model S, Model X and Model 3, as well as its solar power products.

Musk also envisions a car-sharing platform to more fully utilise passenger-carrying potential in cars that would otherwise be sat outside owners’ homes for the majority of the time when they're not in use. Once self-driving cars are approved by regulators, they could be summoned from anywhere.

“Since most cars are only in use by their owner for 5% to 10% of the day, the fundamental economic utility of a true self-driving car is likely to be several times that of a car which is not,” said Musk.

Our Verdict

Tesla Model S 95D

In theory, this all-electric luxury car looks a hit. So is it in practice?

Join the debate


2 August 2016
Commercial electric vehicles make much more sense than cars , Harrods knew this years ago with their delivery vans . However the dreamer still has to make a profit and build all the infrastructure for his grandiose ideas . As a greenie I still wonder about all those b batteries and what to do with them when they give up.


12 October 2016
ralphsmall wrote:

Commercial electric vehicles make much more sense than cars , Harrods knew this years ago with their delivery vans . However the dreamer still has to make a profit and build all the infrastructure for his grandiose ideas . As a greenie I still wonder about all those b batteries and what to do with them when they give up.

Samsung recycle them into phone batteries.

15 February 2017
Hmmm- a dreamer huh? Wonder what you have ever achieved in life...


7 June 2017
Musk is a dreamer AND a doer. Driving a Tesla is a pretty sensible way of doing things, as the motorway Superchargers take away range anxiety issues. I guess the answer to dead batteries is to recycle them, like other companies.

3 August 2016
do you still wonder about all those diesel/petrol engines and what to do with them when they give up? They fill scrapyards.

Automotive batteries are part of the drivetrain warranty for most cars around 8 to 10 years or 100,000 miles whichever is sooner. Plus when they run out (current tech estimated up to 20 years as in the BMW i3 - no we're not talking prius first gen cells here!), they go into home, commercial, and utility grid energy storage systems, which is the best way to recycle and re-use them.

11 October 2016
It's a shame they over complicated the model x as I feel it has delayed and smeared the potentially more important Model Y. Please keep it simple this time.


Hydrogen cars just went POP

11 October 2016
I'm going for an electric bicycle an entry level product to build brand loyalty.

11 October 2016
An electric cargo van sounds great, especially for inner city deliveries, but Tesla's pricing structure would have to change as operating cost is number one with commercials.

7 June 2017
Operating cost is the primary advantage of electric vehicles, for inner city use you can get tyres that last 100,000 miles and brakes on an electric vehicle in a city get essentially negligible use. So essentially your cost is likely to be the cost of depreciation across the vehicles lifespan as electricity is much cheaper than petrol.

Tesla haven't targeted commercials because it's much easier to cover the cost of the battery in a luxury car. However Tesla have now got the cost of a battery for a city based van (50KWh) down to around $8000 so the economics for the van are basically here.


7 June 2017
The truck business is in Tesla's sights - farewell diesels.


Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Alfa Romeo Stelvio
    The new Alfa Romeo Stelvio. We've tested it on UK roads for the first time
    First Drive
    18 August 2017
    First tilt on UK roads reveals a chassis almost as absorbing as the Giulia’s, though the Stelvio’s comfort and quality levels may disappoint SUV clientele
  • Car review
    18 August 2017
    Amid a broader vRS refresh, Skoda has built its most powerful Octavia yet to take on the established order
  • Jaguar F-Type Convertible 2.0 i4 on the road
    First Drive
    16 August 2017
    Having been previously impressed by the agile four-cylinder F-Type, now is our chance to try it in the UK and in open-top form. But can this entry-level Jaguar sports car hold off the impressive Porsche Boxster?
  • Aston Martin V8 Vantage AMR
    The Aston Martin V8 Vantage AMR is a swansong for the Vantage - but the first model to sport the AMR title
    First Drive
    16 August 2017
    Aston Martin's swansong for its venerable Vantage sports car allows it to bow out with its head held high, yet the performance AMR sub-brand's first outing leaves you feeling short-changed
  • Range Rover Velar 2.0D
    First Drive
    15 August 2017
    Can the newest Range Rover deliver the goods when it's being powered by a four-cylinder, 2.0L diesel engine? We tried it on UK roads to find out