The updated Tesla Model 3 is set to be joined by a refreshed version of the related Model Y crossover, though before then Chinese-built models will receive a mechanical upgrade.
Reuters reports word from sources the updated crossover, codenamed Project Juniper internally, with production targeted to start in October 2024.
Two sources told the news agency Tesla has asked suppliers for quotes for exterior and interior components of the Model Y update.
Reuters previously reported the updated Model 3 will also receive changes aimed at cutting costs and improving production efficiency. It’ll reportedly go into production this September.
In a translated release on Chinese social media site Weibo, Tesla revealed the changes it has made to the Model Y’s double-wishbone front and five-link independent rear suspension ahead of this reported facelift.
Tesla says it has improved support stiffness at the top of the shock absorbers by 50 per cent, while optimising their compression damping to reduce the damping force of a low-speed impact.
The result, it claims, is greater high-speed stability and a more comfortable ride – in its (translated) words, “low-speed driving is not bumpy and high-speed cornering is more stable”.
Tesla even suggests the Model Y is now more track-ready, while the driver can feel the road feedback “more comprehensively and directly” even as impacts are filtered out.
We’ve contacted Tesla to confirm the change for Australia, and will update this story with its response if it gets back to us.
VedaPrime, a Tesla shipment tracker on Twitter, recently reported the new “comfort suspension” will feature on all Model Y Performance models being delivered to Australia this year.
It’s unclear if the base rear-wheel drive Model Y will also receive this upgrade.
The Model Y first went on sale in the US in 2020, three years after the Model 3. It arrived here in 2022.
But while the Model S and Model X were able to go years without facelifts, owing to their lack of competition earlier on, the EV market has come a long way in a short time and the Model 3 and Model Y currently face a glut of rivals.
This tough competition saw Tesla cut prices in the crucial Chinese market to help spur sales.
Tesla is known for its regular over-the-air updates, and has traditionally made under-the-skin updates to its vehicles – like its latest suspension upgrade – while keeping them cosmetically much the same.
The Model Y is currently built in Tesla’s Austin, Texas plant in the US, as well as in Germany and China. All Australian-market models come from the Shanghai plant.
MORE: Everything Tesla Model Y