Tonight, we have potentially the first real indication that the Model Y release in Australia is imminent. VedaPrime on Twitter has posted an announcement that the first Tesla Model Y has been detected on Australian shores.
For those not familiar with Veda’s work, he’s known for tracking Tesla shipments to Australia and even offers a service for new Tesla customers to track the ships they’re being delivered on, detailing their expected arrival date.
Over a number of years now, Veda has been proven accurate with his information, so I’d place this in the very likely camp. He goes on to mention that a release candidate model has arrived, typically intended for Australian certification, crash testing, or to educate staff on the new model.
In the lead up to the Model 3 launch, we found the terrible Road Vehicle Certification System website by infrastructure.gov.au, which had listed the Model 3 as certified in Australia. This information can reveal details of which models are to be offered here, however, there can also be variances in between what gets approved for use (like a towbar) and what actually arrives in the design studio (there is still no towbar option).
After searching for any reference to the Model Y on the RVCS website, I can confirm that currently it is not listed, just the Model S, Model X and Model 3.
The Model Y in Australia is set to do very well, off the back of strong Model 3 sales, the SUV market that the Model Y would play in is one of the largest vehicle segments in the country.
According to data from the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI), in the full calendar year 2020 a total of 916,968 vehicles were sold in Australia. SUVs accounted for 49.6% of the market during 2020, an increase from 45.5% market share in 2019. A total of 454,701 SUVs were sold during the year, so you can understand Tesla would be keen to offer a compelling vehicle in the SUV space.
In recent weeks we’ve seen Tesla introduce the Right-hand drive version of the Model Y, like in Hong Kong.
We have seen Tesla offer different lineups of the Model Y internationally, but VedaPrime suggests we could be seeing the SR+, LR and Performance variants in Australia.
The Model Y page on the Australian