Tesla opens up Model 3 configuration to left-hand drive European countries

  • Tesla Model 3 cars are available to configure in China and Europe.
  • International sales will be crucial as U.S. federal tax credits are phased out.
  • Tesla shares tumbled nearly 9.7 percent Wednesday and Thursday.

The electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla has announced that some customers in left-hand drive European countries can now configure and buy its Model 3 car.

The U.S. firm announced the change via its Twitter handle:

The cheapest Model 3 option in Germany is priced at 60,000 euros ($68,000.)

Deliveries in right-hand drive markets, such as the United Kingdom, are set to start in the second half of 2019. U.K. customers can already reserve a Model 3 but cannot yet configure the specifications.

Earlier on Friday, Tesla also opened its Model 3 configurator for the Chinese market, offering customers to choose between the long range all-wheel drive and the Performance version.

"We're excited to bring Model 3 to Europe and China early next year, given that the market for midsize premium sedans in those regions is even larger than in North America," Musk said during an earnings call in October 2018.

The cost of a Tesla Model 3 Performance car will now set back a Chinese customer around 560,000 RMB ($81,000). This reflects a discount of about $25,000 after Beijing suspended the extra 25 percent tariff on cars and parts imported from the U.S.

The cheaper mid-range Model remains unavailable to configure for either Europe or China.

Tesla is currently building a factory 3 in Shanghai which is expected to produce battery packs and electric vehicles at some point this year.