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Breaking Tesla News Includes Model 3 Build Schedule, Insurance, More

The news with Tesla, Inc. this week includes an updated Model 3 build schedule, an interesting idea about maintenance and insurance, and Tesla's Q4 report.

The news this week from Tesla, Inc. includes an important update from Alex Guberman on the new Model 3. Alex, of course, is the founder of the Tesla Model S Owner's Club on Facebook, and a three-time Tesla owner. We bring you his weekly news because we wish to offer a Tesla-centric view of the brand in addition to our usual coverage.

According to Alex, Tesla has a plan to build initial, pre-production or early production, Model 3 cars in July of this year. More importantly, Alex tells us that Tesla is planning a September mass-production build of Model 3 cars. If this schedule is met, and Tesla has hardly ever met any production schedule it announced, our prediction published in late December of the Model 3's rollout will be close to accurate.

Tesla offers maintenance packages in China, and also offers to insure the cars it sells there. This is not new news, but U.S. Tesla fans, who see Tesla as disrupting every aspect of the economy, have seized upon this as one more possible way Tesla could disrupt the automotive world. This ignores the fact that Jaguar, BMW, and many other premium brands already include up to five years of maintenance on the cars they sell (yes, including electric ones) at no extra cost, and that Tesla is very late to the party in that regard. In fact, Tesla remains one of the most expensive automobiles to maintain in the country. On the insurance front, a new insurance plan would be welcome if it in some way adds value. Good to keep in mind that in the U.S. states heavily regulate insurance on automobiles. If Tesla sees profitability there, it could be win-win for consumers. Tesla fans should note that Cadillac presently has a program called Book By Cadillac, which includes maintenance and insurance on its vehicles.

Tesla's most recent quarterly report was a mixed bag. Unlike most of this year, the weekly stock price was down.