Tesla's original master plan was to use the proceeds from its pricier vehicles to create a $35,000 electric vehicle for the masses. And the EV leader did briefly sell a version of the groundbreaking Model 3 sedan at that price — via special order.
As of earlier this week, however, the most inexpensive Model 3 in the U.S. reached $48,440 with shipping, after a series of price hikes over the past year that added about $8,500 to the sticker. Tesla's most popular vehicle, the Model Y crossover, saw its base price increase to $64,440, with shipping, after two price increases this month alone.
But soaring EV prices are not limited to premium startups such as Tesla and Rivian, which increased prices for the launch editions of its R1T pickup and R1S SUV by $12,000 this month, citing higher material costs.