Tesla’s Model Y ‘Juniper’ redesign might come soon

  • A “Juniper” Model Y, spotted in California with concealed bumpers and a front-mounted camera, hints at pending design tweaks and enhanced parking assistance.
  • The “Juniper” Model Y, mirroring design trends and component sharing with the Model 3, is likely to adopt a similar minimalist interior overhaul, potentially phasing out steering stalks and aligning with Tesla’s unified design language across its vehicle range.

Tesla continues to refine its vehicles, focusing on both aesthetics and functionality. The anticipated updates to the Model Y reflect the company’s ongoing efforts to push the boundaries of automotive technology while addressing customer feedback, ensuring that each new model not only looks impressive but also offers enhanced user experience and safety features.
-Vicky Wu, BTW reporter

What happened

A possibly updated Tesla Model Y, referred to as “Juniper”, has been spotted in California, fueling rumors that Tesla is preparing a redesign for its popular electric SUV. The vehicle was seen with its front and rear bumpers covered and featured a front-mounted camera, potentially indicating improvements to parking assistance capabilities. This follows the recent refresh of the Model 3, Model Y’s sedan counterpart, which included changes to the front and rear bumpers, new headlights, taillight modifications, and a switch to a spelled-out text logo.

The Model Y, which claimed the title of the world’s best-selling car last year, was the last vehicle in Tesla’s lineup to retain the steering stalks. Whether the “Juniper” Model Y will adopt the same interior changes as the latest Model 3, S, X, and Cybertruck, removing the steering stalks for a more minimalist interior, remains unconfirmed. However, considering the shared components and design parallels between the Model 3 and Model Y, such as the shift from chrome to matte black finishes and the integration of wireless phone chargers, it is highly probable that the Model Y will undergo a similar redesign. This could mark the end of steering stalk usage across Tesla’s entire vehicle lineup.

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Why it’s important

Despite Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s firm denials of an imminent Model Y revamp in 2023, a recently surfaced photo of a heavily camouflaged Model Y near California’s Rose Bowl stadium has sparked renewed interest. Many speculate that this could be the first glimpse of the updated Model Y, nicknamed “Juniper”, despite Musk’s insistence that no refresh is scheduled for this year.

Musk’s swift response on X, urging people to stop spreading rumors about a new Model Y, reflects his concern over the potential impact on current sales due to the Osborne effect. Given historical timelines, the refreshed Model Y might not launch until April 2025, assuming Tesla sticks to its usual development pace. An official announcement could come in early 2025 or by the end of April at the latest.

Rumors also suggest that Tesla might be planning more substantial changes, including a “hybrid” Gen 2 + Gen 3 architecture, allowing the incorporation of new technologies without disrupting existing production lines. However, this approach would necessitate additional development and testing, potentially delaying the refreshed Model Y’s arrival further than initially anticipated.


Vicky Wu

Vicky is an intern reporter at Blue Tech Wave specialising in AI and Blockchain. She graduated from Dalian University of Foreign Languages. Send tips to v.wu@btw.media.

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