Tesla Model Y buyers in Europe will reportedly only get two color options for their new electric crossover — Black and White. Unveiled in 2019, the Model Y is Tesla’s compact crossover SUV that has become increasingly popular over the years. Elon Musk recently confirmed that Tesla is ramping up production for the right-hand-drive Model Y amid soaring demand in Australia.
Tesla vehicles meant for the European market are manufactured at the company’s Berlin factory, which started rolling out cars earlier this year. The Gigafactory Berlin was opened in March amid much fanfare in the presence of Tesla CEO Elon Musk and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. However, earlier this month, Tesla decided to halt production at the factory for two weeks due to multiple issues, including slow production times, lack of skilled labor and sub-par quality control.
According to a report from German automotive publication Automobilwoche, Tesla’s new Gigafactory near Berlin is building the Model Y only in black or white, thereby reducing the color options for potential customers in Europe. Officially, the two available colors are called Solid Black and Pearl White. The vehicle is technically offered in several other colors as well, including red, blue and silver, but they are not being built in Germany. Instead, they will be shipped from Tesla’s Shanghai Gigafactory and will not be available until at least March 2023.
The problem with reduced color options is an industry-wide issue in Europe and is not just limited to Tesla. According to Reuters, most automakers in the continent are currently offering customers lesser customization options for their cars in return for faster deliveries. The problem is not just with colors, either, as carmakers are paring down engine options, upholstery trims and various other configuration options as part of their plans to fast-track production amid the continuing shortage of semiconductor chips and other supply-chain disruptions.
While automakers are passing this off as the ‘simplification’ of configuration options for buyers, it is helping them improve their profit margins in a competitive market. Some of the companies that are resorting to the new tactic include Volkswagen, Renault, Stellantis and others. In the case of Volkswagen, one of the casualties of the company’s reduced customization options is the electric hatchback ID.3, which is currently being offered in just a single version to shorten delivery times. There’s no telling how long this trend will continue, but with the global chip shortage showing no signs of abating, it might be a while before Tesla Model Y customers can pick from the full repertoire without worrying about inordinately long delivery times.