Tesla’s upcoming electric SUV, the Model Y, is likely to be based on radically different technology, though it is set to be based on the structure that underpins the existing Model 3 sedan. The company’s CEO, Elon Musk, also announced a 2020 launch for the Model Y during an earnings call with analysts, stating that it was only “24 months” away from launch.
Our sister publication, Autocar UK, understands that the Model Y is likely to feature a new electrical architecture and will be more thoroughly resolved from a manufacturing perspective. Although it will be based on the Model 3’s steel and aluminium hybrid structure, the Model Y will use new ‘Flex circuit’ technology.
Flex circuits replace enormous lengths of conventional cable with extremely thin conductive elements sandwiched between flexible plastic mouldings. This technology will be used on the Model Y to dramatically reduce the amount of wiring in the car. While the Model 3 is said to have 1.5km of wiring, the Model Y’s new flex circuits could reduce that to just 100m.
The Model Y will fight for market share against the likes of the Jaguar I-Pace and Audi E-tron.