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Tesla reintroduces ‘affordable’ Model S in the UK

Once upon a time Tesla offered a more affordable Model S but it was scrapped. Now it is back in the form of two new variants, the Model S 60 and Model S 60D.

The new Tesla Model S 60 is available in single and dual motor formats. Gone is the 75kWh option, instead buyers can upgrade to the 75kWh range for £7,500 at the point of sale or pay £7,850 to update later.

The over-the-air range update is made possible by the fact the 60 and 60D cars use the 75kWh battery pack, but the range is electronically limited. When activated, the range goes from 248 to 298 miles.

Compared with the old 60kWh model, the new version – complete with the recently announced design facelift – manages 0-60mph in 5.5 seconds (four-tenths faster than the old 60kWh) and features various interior enhancements including a phone charging dock and new décor options. Top speed is 130mph.

Autopilot hardware is standard, but you will need to pay £2,200 to switch on the ‘Convenience’ features that include autonomous driving and Summon, which allows you to park and unpark the car while standing outside of the vehicle. Or you can update after the purchase for £2,600.

Tesla will cease production of the 60kWh battery pack, a decision it said is ‘the most efficient for Tesla and allows us to pass the most flexibility and cost savings along to our customers’.

The 90D and P90D remain unchanged in the line-up, meaning a total of 346 miles for the former and 316 miles and a 0-60mph time of 2.8 seconds if you spec the Ludicrous Speed Upgrade, which costs £8,700, for the latter.

Prices start from £53,400 for the base rear-wheel drive 60, making it better value than the original 60kWh car, rising to £57,800 for the 60D all-wheel drive dual motor. Both are available to spec and order now from Tesla’s website.

For those who want maximum performance, a top-spec Ludicrous Speed-enabled P90D costs from £101,100.

This is not the first time Tesla has gone back on a decision. When founder Elon Musk decided to remove the rear reading light, his son complained and called it “the stupidest car in the world“, which lead to its reintroduction.

A more affordable Tesla known as the Model 3 is on the way, but will be arriving in 2018 at the earliest, leaving the slightly more affordable Model S to act as a stop-gap of sorts. Meanwhile the Model X sports utility vehicle will go on sale in the UK in the near future.

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