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Elon Musk sneakily dropped a big hint there's a new Model 3 version coming — here's how Tesla superfans caught it

The public will have to wait and see whether or not Tesla moves forward with this model.

The public will have to wait and see whether or not Tesla moves forward with this model.

Photo Credit: Getty

Tesla may have just dropped a hint, in a way that only the most ardent Tesla fans would catch, that a Model 3 Plaid may be arriving soon, as the website Teslarati reported.

In the vehicle's Parts Catalog, an image of a Model 3 rear bumper appears with a Plaid Badge on it. Tesla CEO Elon Musk has previously said making a Model 3 Plaid doesn't make sense. When asked in September if a Plaid Model 3 was on the way, Musk simply said, "No."

According to Teslarati, the Plaid Powertrain was first introduced in 2021 in the Tesla Model S and Model X, both luxury vehicles, to rave reviews from those who appreciate speed and quickness in their cars. The Model S Plaid can reach up to 200 mph, and the Model X Plaid can reach up to 149 mph, Teslarati reported.

Car and Driver referred to the Model S Plaid as "monstrously quick," while Top Gear said it has "the best electric powertrain in the world."

Although Tesla prices have been shifting, the Plaid versions of the Model S and Model X fall in the roughly $90,000 to $95,000 range, respectively, according to Electek and InsideEVs. These prices are about $15,000 more than the regular versions. If the pricing for a Model 3 Plaid version is consistent with those models, that would put the price at roughly $54,000. The Model 3 is currently Tesla's most affordable vehicle.

It's not surprising that Tesla is choosing to drop a subtle hint rather than create an advertising campaign. Tesla has largely steered clear of advertising, instead relying on its many fans to spread the word. The company has only just recently begun advertising on a larger scale.

For now, the public will have to wait and see whether or not Tesla moves forward with a Model 3 Plaid.

As for those wondering why Tesla named these super fast and quick versions of their vehicles Plaid, it's a reference dating back more than 35 years to the 1987 comedy film Spaceballs, a parody of Star Wars, as Car and Driver has reported. In the movie, when a certain ship reaches a speed faster than the speed of light, the ship appears plaid, and a character says in amazement, "They've gone to plaid."

Musk admitted to Car and Driver, "Basically, our product plan is stolen from Spaceballs."

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