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Tesla launches electric car sales in Israel, unveils lower-than-expected prices

US carmaker says it will soon have its first sales agency in Jewish state

A long row of unsold 2021 Model 3 sedans sits at a Tesla dealership, December 27, 2020, in Littleton, Colorado. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
A long row of unsold 2021 Model 3 sedans sits at a Tesla dealership, December 27, 2020, in Littleton, Colorado. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Tesla officially launched its official sales in Israel on Tuesday, listing lower-than-expected prices in shekels for its electric vehicle on a new website.

The US mega-company, owned by the world’s wealthiest person, Elon Musk, announced last year that it would launch operations in the Jewish state in early 2021.

It said Tuesday that its only sales agency in Israel was being built at Ramat Aviv Mall in Tel Aviv, without detailing whether it was a temporary agency or a permanent one, according to the Calcalist business news website.

Tesla for the first time also opened the possibility for Israelis to contact the carmaker via telephone or email, with the company to finish setting up its sales and service apparatus in the near future.

Billionaire entrepreneur and founder of SpaceX Elon Musk speaks at the 68th International Astronautical Congress 2017, in Adelaide, Australia, on September 29, 2017. ( AFP PHOTO / PETER PARKS)

The prices — which notably do not include sales taxes and luxury taxes — begin at NIS 169,990 ($51,500) for the basic Tesla Model 3 vehicle, although with taxes and its most popular accessories, which include an autopilot semi-autonomous driving system, the price could reach up to NIS 250,000 ($75,000), the price originally expected for the model.

The Globes business website reported that the Model 3 long-range version, which is capable of traveling 580 kilometers (360 miles) between charges, starts at NIS 220,000 ($66,700) and the performance version, with two motors and a similar range, starts at NIS 251,000 before taxes and accessories.

The Model S saloon, with a 663-kilometer (412-mile) range between charges, is priced at NIS 420,000 ($127,300), before add-ons, according to Globes. The newly unveiled Model S Plaid, with three electric motors, starts at NIS 644,000 ($195,200), and the Model X luxury crossover starts at NIS 446,000 ($135,200).

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