Eleven years ago, Tesla CEO Elon Musk outlined the company’s master plan in a blog post. The list was short, but ambitious: 1) build a sports car, 2) use that money to build an affordable sports car, and 3) use that money to build an even more affordable sports car.
Since then, the company has accomplished step one and step two. On Friday night, in what promises to be a splashy event at the company’s factory in Fremont, Calif, Musk will finally cross that third step off his list when he handovers 30 Model 3 electric vehicles, a $35,000 car designed for the masses.
Musk tweeted a behind-the-scenes teaser just after midnight.
The Model 3 is arguably the company’s most important car to date. It has been the catalyst behind some of Tesla’s biggest moves, including the construction of its massive $5 billion battery factory. Located in the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center, the gigafactory will produce electric motors for the Model 3 and has started to make lithium-ion battery packs for the vehicle. These battery packs are expected to reduce the per-kilowatt-hour cost of its battery by more than 30%, which, in turn, allows the company to make a mass-market electric car 50% cheaper than its luxury Model S.
Musk sees the Model 3 as a way to introduce electric vehicles to the average American. With a promised range of 215 miles per battery charge, the model could also push Tesla into profitability, provided the newly minted Fortune 500 company can scale up production and delivery.
The launch event, which is scheduled to kick off at 8:45 p.m. PST, will be livestreamed on Tesla’s website. Fortune will also be there, ready to report all things Model 3. Stay tuned.