The Tesla Model Y ‘Juniper’ is Reportedly Coming, But This Isn’t It

The Tesla Model Y ‘Juniper’ is Reportedly Coming, But This Isn’t It

This week, the Tesla Model Y ‘Juniper’ was supposedly posted online, with an easy-to-disprove image posted on social media supposedly showcasing the refreshed SUV.

While reports indicate that the Tesla Model Y Juniper is, indeed, coming, it’s very unlikely that it’s the car shown in the below post. As pointed out by Motor1, the ‘T E S L A’ lettering across the back is suss, as is the lettering that looks like it’s saying ‘Mdoel Y’. The tailgate is also too shallow – it’s supposed to be located higher up on the pillar so that the entire boot, glass included, lifts – unlike the Model 3, which does have a boot that opens shallowly.

You may have also seen this video being shared around online that people are speculating is the Tesla Model Y Juniper, pointing to its distinct rear lights – however, those are just aftermarket parts from Ali Express. Sorry!

Fakes aside, there is reason to believe that Juniper is coming. Tesla is now shipping its 2024 Tesla Model 3 refresh (codenamed ‘Highland’), and if the company’s entry-level sedan got a facelift, then the entry-level SUV can’t be far off one as well.

Tesla Model Y rumours

Talk of a Tesla Model Y revamp first came about in March, when Reuters reported that the company was readying the ‘Juniper’ project. At the time, it was reported that the Tesla Model Y Juniper would mainly see interior and exterior changes. These were the major changes applied to the Tesla Model 3 with the ‘Highland’ project, reported by Reuters in February 2023, and then made official by Tesla in September – so if things align in the same ways, we may see the official Juniper revision in seven months.

As for what the Juniper revision entails, Drive (by way of Bloomberg) reports that Tesla has begun “preparation work” in Shanghai for the Model Y facelift, with production potentially kicking off as soon as mid-2024. That could mean an Australian debut at the end of the year or start of 2025.

Additionally, the Model Y production line will supposedly close for about a week, as it receives an upgrade.

Specs have not been reported of the upgraded Model Y, but considering that the Highland Model 3 received a small range increase – 513km WLTP, up from 491km on the base model – it’s reasonable to expect the same of the Model Y. Similar design changes to the Highland Model 3, including the removal of stalks, a gear shift on the screen, and a much more flush exterior, are also reasonable to expect, but there hasn’t been any information on features just yet.

One thing’s for sure, though – despite being one of the best-selling cars in the world, and the best-selling EV in Australia for 2023, Tesla faces increased competition, particularly from sandstone car companies like Hyundai, Kia, and Volvo, as they catch up on EVs.

In Australia specifically, the winding down of state incentives may lead to a drop in Model Y uptake, as drivers shift to cheaper alternatives, such as the upcoming Volvo EX30 or the BYD Atto 3.

Image: Tesla

Want more Aussie car news? Here’s every EV we’ve reviewed in the last two years, all the EVs we can expect down under soon, and our guide to finding EV chargers across the country. Check out our dedicated Cars tab for more.

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