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[NEWS] Tesla Model Y

Tesla Model Y

1 Tesla Model Y 2022 road test review tracking
Tesla’s smaller SUV, and potentially its biggest seller, finally arrives in the UK

Tesla isn’t like other car companies. In the 10 years since the Tesla Model S was launched, it has developed a fully fledged model line-up and sold millions of cars, embarrassing established manufacturers’ sluggish EV roll-outs in the process. Whatever it is, it’s definitely not a start-up any more.And yet, it does things you couldn’t imagine from, say, Mercedes-Benz. For instance, taking deposits on the upcoming lorry, pick-up truck and roadster despite these models being nowhere near production-ready. Tesla has released its Full Self-Driving system in public beta in America, despite it being quite a long way from being self-driving, as the emerging videos quite clearly show.Another case in point is the Model Y. The compact SUV segment is very important, not just across the Atlantic but over here too. But even though there were plans all along to bring the Model Y to Europe, it has taken two years since the US launch for the first examples to be delivered here.Part of that is Tesla doing its own thing, and part of it is a result of the difficulties it has encountered setting up a new factory in Germany. In fairness, a global pandemic didn’t help, but it also looks like Tesla underestimated the amount of red tape and bureaucracy establishing a greenfield car plant in Germany would entail.Tesla got there in the end, and the Berlin plant is now up and running, but not before the first European-spec Model Ys were delivered from the Shanghai factory. To be able to put arguably its most important new model on sale just a little bit quicker Tesla decided to import cars from China. UK Model Ys will continue to be come from there for a while longer as the site is already geared up to make right-hand drive cars for Japan and Australia.Wherever the cars come from, we can finally take a closer look at what is likely to become Tesla’s biggest seller. Is the Model Y worth the wait?The Tesla Model Y line-up at a glanceWhen the Model Y was originally announced, Elon Musk said there would be cheaper, rear-wheel-drive, entry-level versions, but those are unlikely to see the light of day. Instead, you can choose between the fast, dual-motor, all-wheel-drive Tesla Model Y Long Range, or the even faster dual-motor Performance.There are no trim levels. The Model Y just comes with lots of equipment as standard.EnginesPowerFromLong Range434bhp£54,990Performance483bhp£64,990Tesla Model Y FAQsWhat are the main rivals to the Tesla Model Y?The Tesla Model Y has entered into an increasingly crowded corner of the market - the mid-size EV SUV class. In terms of size and practicality, the Model Y goes toe-to-toe with machines such as the Ford Mustang Mach-E, the Audi Q4 E-tron and even Skoda Enyaq iV. Yet when it comes to performance, pricing and driving dynamics it’s closer to entry-level versions of the Jaguar i-Pace. None of its rivals, however, have access to Tesla’s excellent Supercharger network.How much power does the Tesla Model Y have?The short answer is, quite a lot. There's a choice of two power outputs with the Tesla Model Y, and even the entry-level Long Range AWD packs a hefty 434bhp from its twin motor set-up, which is good for a claimed 0-60mph time of 5.0 seconds. Move up to the Performance and this benchmark figure tumbles to a supercar-humbling 3.7 seconds thanks to its muscular 483bhp output.What choices of gearbox are there for a Tesla Model Y?Like most electric cars, the Tesla Model Y is only available with a single speed transmission. Thanks to the instant torque and high-revving nature of an electric motor there’s no need for multiple ratios, as in an ICE car. However, the gearing used for the front and rear motors is slightly different, with one having a shorter ratio for acceleration and the other slightly longer for more efficient high speed cruising.Where is the Tesla Model Y built?The Tesla Model Y is built in four factories around the world. Currently, the main facilities for production are in the US, with the brand’s original plant in California and newer Gigafactory in Texas. These have been joined by Gigafactories in China (Giga Shanghai) and the recently opened site in Germany (Giga Berlin). Each factory is currently geared up to build 250,000 Model Ys a year, but this number can be increased.How many generations of the Tesla Model Y have there been?Officially debuting in 2019, this the first generation of the Tesla Model Y. Given it’s a relatively new release, there’s no word yet on the second generation version of the SUV. However, unlike many traditional rivals, Tesla prefers to constantly upgrade its cars during their life cycles, rather than launch specific model year updates.

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