Tesla slashes price of Model 3 'performance package'

Upgrades to come with base price

By CNN'S PETER VALDES-DAPENA CONTRIBUTED TO THIS REPORT.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

(CNN) - Tesla says customers can now buy a suped-up Model 3 at a lower price point.

The company said on Saturday customers who purchase a Model 3 Performance, which starts at $64,000, will no longer need to shell out an extra $5,000 for flashier wheels and a spoiler on the trunk. Going forward, those upgrades will come with the base price.

The "performance package," as the upgrade was called, included 20-inch wheels with sportier tires, lowered suspension, better brakes and a higher top speed.

In a review posted Friday, CNN Business' car expert, Peter Valdes-Dapena, wrote about taking two versions of the Model 3 Performance — one with the $5,000 performance package and one without — out for a spin.

"Without the upgraded wheels and tires, the Model 3 Performance felt awkward and, really, a little scary on a twisty mountain road," he noted.

Tesla said in a statement that it "periodically" adjusts "available options and packages in order to simplify our product offering and deliver the best possible driving experience to customers."

But some drivers who had already purchased the $5,000 upgrade package were not pleased.

"This is a sh---y thing to do to a bunch of people who have been waiting for their cars for years - just to now to be devalued by $5,000 a month into ownership," Fred Lambert, editor-in-chief of tech blog Eletrek, said on Twitter.

Musk responded in a tweet, noting that early purchasers were also given free access to Tesla's network of Supercharging stations.

"Current buyers don't get that," Musk said. He then offered to refund the $5,000 upgrade price and turn off users' free Supercharging.

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