Tesla Model Y is finally available in Australia, get ready for it to be the most popular EV in the country

Australians have finally, finally had their chance to order the Tesla Model Y today, after a long wait since the unveiling in March 2019. Tesla’s Shanghai Gigafactory is clearly back in full swing with the Model Y Design Studio going live in Australia, New Zealand and Japan today.

Tesla’s most popular EV, the Model Y, is available in two variants.. the Model Y (a rear-wheel drive) and a Model Y Performance (All-wheel drive). Unfortunately, there is no Long Range variant, at least not at launch, which I think may have actually been the perfect spec for many.

The Model Y landed very close to the expected price tags, starting from $68,900 (driveway), up exactly $5,000 on the Model 3’s entry price of A$63,900. Frustratingly, the Model Y lands just over the VIC rebate threshold of $68,740, making buyers ineligible for the $3,000 discount. This doesn’t feel fair, given that someone requiring an SUV vehicle, isn’t choosing the price here.

The entry-level Model Y offers up to 455km of range under the WLTP standard. Realistically I think we can expect to see just under 400km of range, but thanks to the LFP battery chemistry, owners should be able to change to 100% daily without issue.

The cheapest Model Y still offers all the great features of a Tesla, but with way more storage than the Model 3. The 0-100km/hr time is a pretty decent 6.9s, but that’s slow compared to the Model Y performance of just 3.7s.

If you buy a Model Y, you’ll have the choice of the paint, white included, 19″ Gemeni or 20″ Induction wheels, black (included) or white interior and the option of adding the FSD Capability for A$10,100. What’s not there to select is the 7 seat option which I know some were hoping for, so for now, you have to be ok with 5 seats.

There is also no tow hitch, however, this is going to be a service installed accessory, estimated to be available early 2023.

The Model Y order page lacks any detail on charger options, strange given the recent controversy and the fact Model 3 buyers are now selecting between the mobile and high-performance wall charger at checkout. There will definitely be a decent number of Model Y buyers that have never owned a Tesla, so this discussion around having an included charger, is more valid than ever.

Inside, Model Y’s panoramic glass roof and high seating creates a feeling of spaciousness and offers an expansive view from every seat in the vehicle. The front trunk and split-folding second-row seats provide a total of 2,158 litres of storage space.  

Australia’s first Model Y owners will receive their cars in Aug, just 3 months away, however, they are clearly popular, with the wait time already pushing out to November – Feb 2023.

If you opt for the Performance model, you’ll be paying $105,612 driveway in Victoria, which has an insane $4,789 for Luxury Car Tax and A$4,226 of stamp duty. Given ACT has no stamp duty on EVs, this is pretty hard to swallow.

The Performance spec will surprise many at the lights, with the mid-sized SUV launching from 0-100km/hr in just 3.7 seconds and just 0.4s slower than the Model 3. It features a top speed of 250km/hr but unfortunately no track mode yet. The range does jump to a healthy 514km (WLTP), so expect around 550-560km real world.

There are no choices for wheels, the 21″ Uberturbines are included with the M3P, given most in this category are looking for ride comfort, they’ll need to look to the extra suspension travel as the low-profile tyres won’t offer much. From international experiences, we know these rims can be prone to damage if they hit big potholes, so owners will need to be extremely careful.

The Model Y Performance is due to start hitting the streets from November to February 2023 and as you’d expect both trims come with Autopilot included.

Like Model 3, Model Y requires no keys, but instead connects to your smartphone for seamless entry and exit, with a single 15-inch touchscreen interface inside for all of the car’s controls. Model Y also connects with the Tesla Mobile app for unique, easy-to-access features like remote unlock, remote pre-conditioning, location tracking, Speed Limit Mode, and much more.  

If you decide to buy a Model Y, you’ll get access to Tesla’s growing list of Supercharger locations, currently sitting at 230 Superchargers across 49 locations in Australia. Of course you’ll also have access to charge at 3rd party chargers like Chargefox, Evie and others that use the CCS2 connector.

As with all Teslas, Model Y gets better over time with frequent over-the-air software updates.


Model Y Specifications  

Model Y  Rear-Wheel Drive  Performance  
Starting Price (excluding on-roads)   A$68,900 A$98,689 (incl. LCT) 
Paint   Pearl White Multi-Coat, Solid Black, Midnight Silver Metallic, Deep Blue Metallic, Red Multi-Coat  Pearl White Multi-Coat, Solid Black, Midnight Silver Metallic, Deep Blue Metallic, Red Multi-Coat  
Seating Layout  5 Adults. Independent fold-flat second row with adjustable seatbacks. Electronic releases in trunk for convenience.  5 Adults. Independent fold-flat second row with adjustable seatbacks. Electronic releases in trunk for convenience.  
Interior  All Black Premium Interior (included)   Black & White Interior (optional) All Black Premium Interior (included)   Black & White (optional) 
Wheels  19” Gemini (included)  20” Induction (optional) 21” Uberturbine (included) 
Range (WLTP) 455 km 514 km  
Acceleration 0-100km/h  6.9s  3.7s  
Top Speed  217 km/h  250 km/h  
Drive  Rear-Wheel Drive  Dual Motor All-Wheel Drive  
Weight  1,909 kg  1,997 kg  
Max Cargo Volume  2,158 litres  2,158 litres  
Tow Hitch  Service installed accessory, estimated to be available early 2023.  Service installed accessory, estimated to be available early 2023.   
Equipment  HEPA air filtration system  Performance Upgrade Pack, HEPA air filtration system, LED Fog Lights  

Today is an important milestone in Australia’s EV transition, with the Model Y now officially available to order. There are hundreds of Aussies sharing their hedgehogs from the order confirmation page, so it seems the Model Y is off to a great start. If international experiences are repeated here (I expect they will be), this will rapidly overtake the Model 3 to become Australia’s best selling EV.

For fun, I added all the options to the Model Y and the full loaded Model Y Performance could cost you as much as A$125,251 driveway. If you’ve got Model X money and are still waiting or the refresh to arrive here, maybe you’ll consider downsizing.

Head to https://www.tesla.com/en_au/modely/ to check it out online, or many of the Tesla showrooms around the country now have models you can take a look at.

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Jason Cartwright
Jason Cartwrighthttp://techau.com.au/author/jason/
Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021

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