Production issues have plagued it, and 2018 proved a highly controversial year for chief executive Elon Musk.
Still, the Model Y, like all Tesla models, has already seen pre-production delays. Really, this was Musk's thinking.
"This could be Tesla's most profitable vehicle, with the giant asterisk that the company doesn't do some of the dumb things it has in the past", said Gartner analyst Mike Ramsey.
"He was not the usual charismatic Elon Musk". We'll keep you updated on the latest. "I love you more", he said.
San Francisco - Tesla pulled the covers off its much-awaited Model Y electric crossover vehicle on Thursday, promising that it will be a formidable rival to the new wave of electric SUVs emanating from Europe.
The Model Y, which is the automaker's fifth vehicle since its founding in 2003, is considered as its most important auto.
It also features a panoramic glass roof, seating for seven people and will come feature complete with autopilot some time later this year. Coefficient of drag will be a remarkable 0.23, making it one of the most wind-slippery production vehicles in history.
The Tesla Roadster was the first vehicle the manufacturer unveiled on February 2008.
The more affordable version with a standard range of 230 miles (370 km range) and 120 miles top speed (193 km/h ) can accelerate from 0 to 60 in 5.9 seconds will start at $39,000 in spring 2021, most likely significantly later than that.
The CEO proceeded to roll out each of Tesla's vehicles - the Roadster, Model S, Model X and Model 3, as well as the planned Roadster refresh and Semi truck. As is often the way with Teslas, it'll be little while before we get the Y in the United Kingdom, but who would bet against there being a glut of orders as soon as they are?
CEO Elon Musk said the battery-powered auto, built on the same platform as the Model 3, would first debut in a long-range version with a range of 300 miles (482 km) priced at $47,000. With its extra get-up-and-go the Performance model will offer "only" 280 miles of range. According to Tesla, the Long Range, Dual Motor and Performance trims will be available in Fall 2020. The rear-drive Long Range is the 300-mile Model Y, while the dual-motor versions (Long Range and Performance) check in at 280 miles of range. It'll sticker for $52,200. A bigger battery will give 300 miles of range.
The long-range model, which starts at 47,000 USA dollars, has a range of up to 300 miles (483 kilometers) on a single charge - less range than the Model 3. It'll sticker for $40,200 including destination and delivery charges.
There had been statements put out by third parties that Tesla hadn't contacted them to start ordering parts for the Model Y yet, which was held up by some as proof that Tesla was rushing this announcement. I couldn't get my seatbelt latched and so just made a decision to pray for the short two or three-minute ride while the enthusiastic driver launched down a blocked-off street. Musk has made a series of unnerving moves since then with the aim of lowering prices of a still-costly lineup to offset shrinking USA tax incentives. It was quick but it wasn't close to Ludicrous Mode. "We're bringing S3XY back, quite literally!"
Musk was even more optimistic about Model Y sales.
By keeping it the vehicle simpler than the Model X - which was nearly two years late to market because of technical challenges - Tesla will be hoping for a smoother and faster production ramp up.