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Electric vehicles will grow cheaper as time passes, and we’re already beginning to see prices drop. Tesla, which used to charge extraordinarily high prices for its EVs, now offers a model that costs less than the original car it produced. The Model Y is the brand’s first SUV. 

U.S. News recognizes the competitive EV market is driving prices lower, so the publication compiled a list of the cheapest EVs you can buy this year. The Tesla Model Y appears in the roundup, but it’s the most expensive of the bunch.

How does the Tesla Model Y’s price compare with other models?

When electric vehicles began hitting the market, their prices were quite high. As new model years come out, the market becomes more competitive because there are now more electric cars, SUVs, and soon trucks on dealership lots for consumers to choose from. 

U.S. News lists 12 as the cheapest EVs this year. The least expensive is the Mini Cooper SE Hardtop, starting at $29,900. But if you choose the top-trim Iconic, expect to pay around $36,900.

Sitting in the middle of the list is the Hyundai Kona Electric. This subcompact SUV starts at $37,190. The Kona’s highest trim is the Ultimate, starting at $45,400. 

But the most expensive on the list of the cheapest EVs is the Tesla Model Y, starting at $50,990. However, that’s for the Long Range model. If you choose the more powerful Performance trim, you’ll pay around $60,990.

What the Tesla Model Y offers EV consumers

Tesla continues to produce futuristic-looking EVs with unique features that make driving them more fun. The 2021 Model Y is no exception. For $50,990, you get one of the best-performing crossovers on the market. You’ll also get one of the safest electric SUVs available, thanks to its front-end design, offering improved safety for front-row passengers.

The Model Y Performance can zip from 0 to 60 in 3.5 seconds. That’s quite a bit faster than many gas-powered rivals. Tesla’s Standard Long Range model is slightly slower at 4.8 seconds. But it offers a 326-mile range, while the Performance trim gets 303 miles on a full charge. 

One convenient feature is the 15-inch touchscreen, which controls just about everything in the vehicle. That includes navigation, music, and even some traditional features on other vehicles. Another interesting perk is the available third seat that upgrades the Tesla Model Y from a five-seater to a seven-seater. 

Is this electric SUV worth the MSRP?

Several factors come into play when deciding whether the Tesla Model Y is worth the price. One aspect is that the Model Y is almost identical to the Model 3. But the difference is that the former is an SUV, while the latter is a sedan. 

Also, the Model 3’s base trim offers a longer range. You can expect to travel about 353 miles before needing a charge in normal circumstances. The starting price is also lower, at $46,990 for the Model 3 Long Range, the least expensive Tesla to date. If you choose the Performance model, you’ll get an acceleration time of 3.1 seconds. That’s 0.4 seconds faster than the Model Y.

However, the larger Model Y offers more cabin space. Don’t expect much if you upgrade to the jump seat, though, because it doesn’t offer as much room as the second-row seats. But if you want performance, Tesla’s SUV won’t get you much for the price. On the other hand, if space is important, opt for the Model Y (without the third row, of course) over the Model 3. 

With all the EVs on the market nowadays, the Tesla Model Y stands out for its unique features. Though it’s one of the EV maker’s cheapest models, it’s by no means inexpensive, especially compared with other SUVs on the U.S. News list. 


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