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Dream of cheaper Tesla ownership in Europe gets real, but Brits face longer wait

Tesla’s Model 3 sedan – the most affordable electric car in the company’s garage – has been approved for sale in Europe.

That means pre-order customers on the continent – eagerly awaiting the battery-powered sedan they reserved upon its announcement in early 2016 – should soon have some good news.

The news comes after the company received what’s known as European homologation from the Dutch regulator RDW, meaning the vehicle can be driven legally on roads in the continent.

However, that doesn’t mean the car will imminently be showing up on British driveways any time soon. The company still says the Model 3 will be available in right-hand drive markets in the second half of 2019.

Currently, the first 3,000 vehicles bound for Europe, is navigating its way through the Panama Canal. Electrek reports those waiting for their cars have been tracking the boat.

Related: Best SIM-only deals for January 2019

The cars are set to arrive in Belgium on February 2 and, from that point on, 3,000 more cars will arrive each week to satisfy the 14,000 European pre-orders and beyond.

Unfortunately, for those seeking to adopt the EV revolution with the most affordable Tesla ever, the news isn’t all good. Only the most expensive models in the range, the Performance and Dual Motor AWD version are currently available.

Tesla has been working through the backlog of some 400,000 pre-orders after clearing production bottlenecks in 2018, and it now seems the firm is ready to aggressively embrace new customers moving forward.

As well as being slightly smaller than the Model S, the Model 3 has a slightly smaller battery with a maximum range of 310-miles, compared to 394-mile max range in the top-end Model S vehicle. It’s also a little slower from 0-60mph than the Model S.

Are you one of the customers eagerly-awaiting your Tesla Model 3? Is this your first EV purchase? Let us know @TrustedReviews on Twitter.

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