tesla-model-3-test-car

Tesla Model 3 – What we know

It has been just over one week since the Tesla Model 3s were delivered to the first 30 customers. This is what we have learnt from the launch, press comments and Tesla’s Q2 earning call.

Safe:

Safety is key: The pitch last week started with a comparison with Volvo who are judged to make super safe cars. The Model 3 will be safe.

All Teslas have the hardware ability for full Autopilot. Elon Musk said that all Tesla Model 3s will have Autopilot hardware as standard – and all the safety features that come with it. Sure, you may not get full Level 5 auto drive yet, but you will get things such as autonomous emergency braking (AEB), lane keeping and automatic preventative steering (Autosteer) – which is seriously impressive at this price. And because the Model 3 comes with all the sensors and lasers you need for Autopilot as standard, you can always get the matching software at a later date. It’ll probably cost you around £2,600, but having the option to upgrade your entry-level Tesla is a real bonus.

Single screen interior. All Teslas are known for their futuristic interiors as much as their innovative propulsion, and it’s great to see the Model 3 continue or even better the trend. The screen inside the Model 3 doesn’t seem to be as big, and it’s in a landscape position – but that’s because it’s taking the place of the car’s dials. That’s right, there’s nothing in front of the steering wheel. The Model 3 doesn’t even have a speedometer. Instead, you’ll find the speed on the top left of the touchscreen (on a left-hand drive car, of course).

There are two Model 3 cars. Tesla have wisely ditched the battery size as a mark of the car and switched to range. I think this is wise as KW and KWH are not that easy to understand and can’t be directly compared between models. Just as a BMW 2L engine is not the same as a Nissan 2L engine. You can or more to the point chose from the standard model with 220 miles of range to the Long Range Version with 310 miles. Other specs include:

Standard Battery

  • Starting at $35,000
  • Range of 220 miles
  • 0 to 60 mph acceleration in 5.6 seconds
  • Top speed of 130 mph

Long Range Battery

  • Starting at $44,000
  • Range of 310 miles
  • 0 to 60 mph acceleration in 5.1 seconds
  • Top speed of 140 mph

Full specs below:

The S curve. Musk explained a number of times that production will follow the exponential S curve routine. July 30 cars. August 100 cars and September 1,500 cars. By year-end production will ramp to 5,000 per week or a rate of 40,000 / month. By end of 2018 that will double again to 10,000 week. Musk called this production hell. You can see why.

model-3-s-curve

Price: The base price may be $35,000 but the initial cars will be priced way above this level. The base car will be available in November. Until then you will only be offered the longer range car for $44,000 with the a small number of options. The key option being the Luxury Pack for $5,000. You can also add larger wheels and a number of paint options. For now the $35K car will cost you $48K. You can see the logic. It makes manufacturing much easier with less configurations and boosts average selling price in order to drive revenue.

The interior:

One big question is what’s it like inside. Now we know. A single screen – landscape and not as large as the Model S’s display. Most reports seem very positive.

model 3 interior

During a press briefing on Friday, Franz von Holzhausen, Tesla’s Chief Designer,

“The interior is the most innovative part of the design. We took away everything that is not necessary. What we delivered on the interior is unlike any other car out there. It will age gracefully.”

Straight lines never really go out of style, which is where the model 3’s unique dashboard comes into play. Instrument clusters, buttons, and air conditioning vents are vulnerable to design changes. By removing the instrument cluster, placing all the controls on the steering wheel and a central touchscreen, and replacing vents with a single one running the entire length of the dash, Tesla is removing those vulnerabilities.

model-3-dashboard-head-on-view1 model-3-interior-dash-desert-view1

International:

International left hand drive sales will commence in mid 2018 and right hand drive only in 2019. We will have a long wait in the UK.

All wheel drive will boost performance and range will not be available for some time, most likely Spring 2018.

The wait list has grown to over 500,000. That’s given Tesla $500M to play with and represents a sales value of over $20B. Elon confirmed a number have cancelled but the new number is growing at 1,800 per day.

More news on charging and real world range as we discover the facts.

Model 3 specifications:

STANDARD EQUIPMENT

Price – $35,000

Standard Battery

  • Range: 220 miles (EPA estimated)
  • Supercharging rate: 130 miles of range per 30 minutes
  • Home charging rate: 30 miles of range per hour (240V outlet, 32A)
  • Deliveries begin: Fall 2017

Performance

  • 0-60 mph: 5.6 seconds
  • Top speed: 130 mph

Interior

  • 15” touchscreen display
  • Dual zone climate control system
  • FM/Internet streaming radio
  • Textile seating
  • Front Center console with open storage and two USB ports

Convenience

  • Onboard maps and navigation
  • Wi-Fi and LTE internet connectivity
  • Keyless entry and remote climate control using the Tesla app
  • Voice activated controls
  • Bluetooth hands-free calling and media streaming
  • 60/40 split folding rear seat to maximize cargo options
  • Back-up camera
  • Auto dimming rear-view mirror
  • One-touch power windows throughout
  • Power-adjustable side mirrors
  • 12-volt power outlet

Safety

  • Full LED exterior lighting
  • Seven cameras, forward radar and twelve ultrasonic sensors enabling active safety technologies including collision avoidance and automatic emergency braking
  • Six front row and two side curtain airbags
  • Three-point safety belts with belt-reminders for driver and four passengers
  • Two LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) attachments in second row
  • Electronic stability and traction control
  • Four-wheel antilock disc brakes with electronic parking brake
  • Child safety locks
  • Anti-theft alarm system
  • Tire pressure monitoring system

Warranty

  • Vehicle: 4 year, 50,000 mile limited warranty
  • Battery warranty: 8 year, 100,000 mile (120,000 mile with Long Range Battery)

OPTIONS

Long Range Battery – $9,000

  • Range: 310 miles
  • Supercharging rate: 170 miles of range per 30 minutes
  • Home charging rate: 37 miles of range per hour (240V outlet, 40A)
  • 0-60 mph: 5.1 seconds
  • Top speed: 140 mph
  • Deliveries begin: July 2017

Paint

  • Solid Black: Standard
  • Midnight Silver Metallic: $1,000
  • Deep Blue Metallic: $1,000
  • Silver Metallic: $1,000
  • Pearl White Multi-Coat: $1,000
  • Red Multi-Coat: $1,000

Wheels

  • 18” Aero: Standard
  • 19” Sport: $1,500

Premium Upgrades Package – $5,000 Upgraded interior with additional features and premium materials.

  • Premium heated seating and cabin materials throughout, including open pore wood décor and two rear USBs
  • 12-way, power adjustable front seats, steering column and side mirrors, with custom driver profiles
  • Premium audio system with more power, tweeters, surround speakers and subwoofer
  • Tinted glass roof with ultraviolet and infrared protection
  • Auto dimming, power folding, heated side mirrors
  • LED fog lamps
  • Center console with covered storage and docking for two smartphones

Enhanced Autopilot – $5,000 Model 3 will match speed to traffic conditions, keep within a lane, automatically change lanes, transition from one freeway to another, exit the freeway and self-park at your destination.

Additional features will roll out over time through software updates.

Full Self-Driving Capability – $3,000 (requires Enhanced Autopilot) In the future, Model 3 will be capable of conducting trips with no action required by the person in the driver’s seat.

This feature is dependent upon extensive software validation and regulatory approval, which may vary by jurisdiction.

VEHICLE SPECIFICATIONS

Dimensions & Weight

  • Length: 184.8”
  • Width: 76.1” (72.8” with mirrors folded)
  • Height: 56.8”
  • Wheelbase: 113.2”
  • Track (wheel center): 62.2” front and rear
  • Ground clearance: 5.5”
  • Head room, standard: 39.6” front row, 37.7” second row
  • Head room, glass roof: 40.3” front row, 37.7” second row
  • Leg room: 42.7” front row, 35.2” second row
  • Shoulder room: 56.3” front row, 54.0” second row
  • Hip room: 53.4” front row, 52.4” second row
  • Seating capacity: 5 adults
  • Luggage capacity: 15 cubic feet
  • Curb weight:
    • 3549 lbs. (Model 3)
    • 3814 lbs. (Model 3 Long Range)
  • Weight distribution:
    • 47% front, 53% rear (Model 3)
    • 48% front, 52% rear (Model 3 Long Range)

Body

  • Hybrid steel/aluminum body
  • Drag coefficient of 0.23

Chassis

  • Double wishbone, virtual steer axis front suspension with coil over twin-tube shock absorbers and stabilizer bar
  • Independent multi-link rear suspension with twin-tube shock absorbers and stabilizer bar
  • Variable ratio, speed sensitive electronic power steering
  • Electromechanically boosted four wheel anti-lock disc brakes with electronic brake force distribution
  • 18” Aero or 19” Sport wheels with all-season tires

Standard Accessories

  • 240 volt NEMA 14-50 adapter
  • 120 volt NEMA 5-15 adapter
  • J1772 public charging adapter
  • 20 foot mobile connector with storage bag


About

Editor of the EV Info site. Past owner and driver of Corbin Sparrow, GEM and Tango T600. Current driver of Nissan Leaf. MD of Taybridge Digital in Surrey.


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