News - Tesla
Tesla charges up for 2016
Charging ahead: In 2016 Tesla will introduce its Model X SUV, reveal its entry level Model 3, build a new Supercharger in Port Macquarie and open a flagship store in Sydney.
Electric vehicle-maker Tesla reveals plans for expansion in 2016 and beyond
12 February 2016
TESLA Australia is looking to capitalise on its local growth by opening a new
flagship store in Sydney’s central business district (CBD), as well as building
a new Supercharger Station in Port Macquarie, pushing its quick-charge network
further north towards Brisbane.
The American electric vehicle-maker’s Australian marketing and communications
manager Heath Walker said expanding the local Tesla footprint will help Tesla
achieve its goal of connecting Australia with EV charging.
“So we’ve now completed the supercharger network from Sydney to Melbourne,
allowing for free long-distance travel to all our owners between those two
cities,” he said.
“We’ve already started construction on Port Macquarie, which will start the
journey from Sydney up to Brisbane and from a store point of view, we’ve got
two stores in Melbourne now, one up in Sydney, in addition to being able to buy
anywhere in Australia online.
“What we will have in the not too distant future is another store in Sydney,
which will be our flagship store in the centre of Sydney.
“Our long-term aim is to have the whole of Australia covered in superchargers,
and that’s the long-term aim and allowing for everyone to be able to travel at
no cost in electric vehicles.”
The Port Macquarie site will be free to use for Tesla owners and is able to
charge six Model S vehicles at one time, which can add up to 270km of range in
half an hour.
Tesla’s recently released fourth quarter 2015 earnings also reveal plans to
grow global sales by 60-80 per cent in 2016 for a full year of profitability on
the back of strong worldwide Model S deliveries, a 76 per cent increase in Q4,
2015, compared with the same time last year.
This year, Tesla will introduce its all-electric Model X SUV in Australia,
which is being delivered to customers in the United States.
It is also set to unveil its third vehicle, the entry level Model 3, in late
While little is known about the Model 3, Tesla has committed to a lower price
point and smaller size, possibly putting it in direct competition with luxury
sedan stalwarts the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class.
Tesla co-founder, product architect and chief executive officer Elon Musk
confirmed via Twitter that pre-orders will begin after the car is revealed on
March 31 with a $US1000 deposit.
Mr Walker said next month’s unveiling will not reveal any technical
specification or battery options available to the Model 3, but that the new
vehicle will be an important model for the tech giant.
“Model 3 will be showcased in March, but only the exterior to begin with,” he
said. “It (Model 3) showcases our mass-volume vehicle and will really bring
electric vehicle technology to the masses.”
Plans are also in place to build a fully autonomous vehicle in the next two
years, building on its self-driving Autopilot system introduced in October 2015.
Mr Walker said a self-governing vehicle will likely be a whole new model, as
the requirements for full autonomy would be too much for Tesla’s current crop
“It’s just advancing the hardware,” he said. “I don’t think that the cars as
they stand today would advance to fully autonomous based on software alone, so
there is additional hardware that is required on the cars.
“Autopilot certainly can provide us with a lot of data through the dynamic
mapping that the car has, send it up to the air and then teach the rest of the
fleet vehicles around what that car has been doing.”
However, changes to the Model S are still on the way, with Tesla planning to
release more over-the-air updates to improve the functionality of the
Mr Walker said that a feature that allows the Model S to automatically come to
owners from a parking spot – already available in other markets – is in the
process of being approved for Australia.
“In some markets we’ve already got the Summon feature which enables our cars to
be remotely removed, via the app, from a car park,” he said.
“So you can stand outside the car and the car will come to you, and we’re
waiting for regulatory approval in this market, we’re hoping that will occur