Tesla Model 3

Tesla has made the Model 3 a better value for 2019

An electric car for the masses

Tesla Model 3 Performance

Although it was originally intended to be an electric car for the masses, the Tesla Model 3 has instead found itself to be an all-electric alternative to compact luxury sedans. The promised $35,000 Model 3 has yet to materialize—we’ve all but given up hope on it, to be honest—but the variations that are offered are pretty good. Despite an interior that seems cheap and unembellished, the Model 3 has been keeping up with the likes of the BMW 3-series and the Mercedes-Benz C-class in sales.

The available driving range starts at 264 miles for the Mid Range Battery to 310 for the Long Range Battery and Performance variants. Using one of Tesla’s many Supercharger charging stations, the Model 3 can replenish much of its driving range in a very short amount of time. For at-home charging convenience, Tesla offers such equipment for purchase.

Highs: Quick acceleration and nimble handling, real-world-usable driving range, lots of future-is-now technology.

Lows: More affordable variant may never arrive, driving range doesn’t hold up on the highway, stark interior layout.

Verdict: Similar driving range and semi-autonomous driving tech but at half the price of the Model S.

What’s New For 2019?

2019 Tesla Model 3 Cost and Performance

What’s New for the Tesla Model 3 in 2019?

Tesla has made the Model 3 a better value for 2019 by dropping the price on all three of the variants listed below by $2000. The Model 3 Performance also now comes standard with the the previously optional Performance Upgrade package, which includes 20-inch wheels with summer tires, upgraded brakes, a carbon-fiber spoiler, aluminum pedal trim, a lowered suspension, and a 10-mph increase in top speed (to 155 mph).

Tesla Model 3 Pricing and Which One to Buy

Mid Range Battery: $45,200

Long Range Battery: $52,200

Performance: $63,200

 

Since the Model 3’s interior doesn’t strike us as luxurious, we’d go with the Mid Range Battery model to save some cash. The Mid Range Battery’s driving range is 265 miles and that should be enough for the majority of drivers. All Model 3s come standard with desirable features such as heated front seats with 12-way adjustability, a tinted glass roof, navigation with real-time traffic updates, four USB ports, and docking stations for two smartphones. We would splurge and add the Enhanced Autopilot package, which includes Tesla’s cool semi-autonomous driving mode.

 

Powertrain, Charging, and Performance

Tesla Model 3 Powertrain, Charging, and Performance

Likes: Smooth and swift acceleration, sharp handling, Performance model brings the heat. 

Dislikes: Charging at Tesla Supercharging stations isn’t free, noisy ride.

As with most other EVs, the Model 3 gains speed smoothly and almost silently, with the electric motor providing a strong swell of power right from a dead stop to make the car feel very responsive at lower speeds. The rear-wheel-drive Long Range model we tested sprinted from zero to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds. Step up to the Model 3 Performance and its two motors combine to make 450 horsepower and rockets the compact EV to 60 mph in just 3.5 seconds—a time that’s 0.4 second faster than the bigger and more expensive Model S 100D.

The Model 3 carries its heavy battery under the floor, resulting in a low center of gravity, and it has the front-to-rear weight distribution of a sports car. These two attributes help it change direction crisply and feel planted and stable in the corners. The steering is accurate and well weighted, with three different settings that adjust the level of steering effort: Comfort, Standard, and Sport. The ride is firm without being harsh; without the noise of a gas-powered engine to cover it up, however, you do hear plenty of noise inside the cabin as the tires thwack and thrum when driving over pavement imperfections.

Read More at Car and Driver 

The Tesla Model 3 has quickly conquered the luxury car segment. In its full first year on the market, the new EV sold an estimated 138,000 units in the US, beating out the Lexus RX, which sold 111,641 units, and sailing past the BMW 3 and 4 series, which sold 75,957 vehicles.

 

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