Tesla Model 3's Europe Arrival Puts Fans on Watch for Musk

(Bloomberg) -- As the first shipment of Tesla Inc.’s Model 3 landed in Europe, the prospect of Elon Musk following suit sparked feverish speculation among his many fans.

With the first of the electric vehicles arriving in the Belgian hub of Zeebrugge this week, local newspaper De Tijd reported that the billionaire pioneer was due to make a personal inspection of the port. Television station Focus & WTV reported that Musk touched down Friday evening at Ostend airport.

Tesla Model 3's Europe Arrival Puts Fans on Watch for Musk

Tesla spokesmen in Europe didn’t respond to a request for comment.

The close following of Musk’s whereabouts is an indication of how highly anticipated the Model 3 is in Europe, a market that will be key to the chief executive officer reaching annual global sales of between 500,000 and 1 million sedans. That would put the battery-operated car, with a standard 220 mile driving range, on par with the Audi A3 or Volkswagen AG’s Golf.

Customers have started to take delivery of their Model 3s, despite some vehicles being delayed coming through the international car operators terminal. Musk wrote on Twitter that the issues would clear up on Thursday.

Prices for the cars vary depending on the country, with customers in Belgium paying a base price of 58,800 euros ($66,626), compared with 55,400 euros in Germany and 53,500 euros in France.

Tesla has cut the Model 3 sticker price in the U.S. twice this year to $42,900 to partially offset a reduction in federal tax credits.

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.