WALNUT CREEK (CBS SF) -- People were lining up outside dealerships 48 hours early to stake their claim on the new Tesla Model 3 when it debuts Thursday. They're hoping to put down a $1000 reservation deposit on the automaker's most affordable electric vehicle to date.
The starting price on the Model 3 is $35,000 and it's slated to hit the assembly line in late 2017. Company CEO Elon Musk will unveil it on March 31 at 10 a.m. Pacific Time.
About 50 miles from Tesla's headquarters in Palo Alto, a man sat reading in a camping chair with his duffel bag by his side Wednesday out the automaker's Walnut Creek dealer. Meantime, halfway around the globe, a diehard fan in Australia was already queued up on Tuesday. These early birds will still have to get behind thousands of unseen current Tesla owners who have priority over everyone. Owners can reserve online.
After word of Thursday's unveiling got out, owners and wannabe owners started a worldwide city-by-city spreadsheet where people are putting down their names and options, asking for rides, and pooling resources.
Some folks on the spreadsheet say they'll camp out, and some will just show up. Others have a 'wait and see' attitude like the fan in Burbank, California who said they "will drive by Wednesday and see if there's a line."
— Tesla Motors (@TeslaMotors) March 29, 2016
CBSSF.com writer, producer Jan Mabry is also executive producer and host of The Bronze Report. She lives in Northern California. Follow her on Twitter @janmabr.
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