Tesla Model 3 Review, The Best Car in the World?

This is Tesla Model 3, its similar to Tesla Model S but its more affordable. It starts in USA for around $35,000, in Europe it starts around €50,000.

We are reviewing the performance version therefore it has sport upgrades like a carbon fiber rear spoiler.


Carbon fiber rear spoiler.

It has 20 inch alloy wheels.

20″ Wheels

It also has bigger brakes and the car sits lower to the ground. It kind-of looks like the Model S, but a little bit more modern and smaller.

Since this is an electric car, there is no front grill.

The design is sleek, it looks nice. But inside is super high-tech. The interior has very clean and modern design.

Dashboard

There are almost no buttons in car. In fact only buttons are on the steering wheel.

Steering Wheel buttons

Squishy materials are used in interior, on the dash, on the door, on the sides of center console and even down on the door bins as well. The build quality is also top notch. The controls on steering wheels have nice damp feeling to them. The interior components of the car don’t shake. There are a few bits and pieces which feels less solid compared to lets say BMW, but its not too far. The have got incredibly close to mainstream manufacturers in terms of interior quality. But there is an area where they completely obliterated the competition, and that is the infotainment screen.


Infotainment Screen

Every Model 3 gets dual zone climate control which you can control from the screen. You can control from where the air should come out of the dash.

Climate Control

Model 3 has mobile phone connectivity where you can actually control the car remotely with an app. You can do range of things from the app like operate the climate control, check charging status, and some more things like lock and unlock it. You can use your phone as key to your car, it recognizes that you have got your phone in your pocket and lets you in the car and also start it.

Mobile app

You also get a reversing camera which is one of highest definition camera ever seen on a car.

If you get the performance model, you get optional fallen glass roof as standard. It extends all the way to the back which looks fabulous.

Glass roof

You get vegan leather seats in performance model and the seats are heated for all passengers including the middle back seat which can be controlled from infotainment screen.

Heated Seats control

You can control most of the car’s functions through the screen. There is Google Maps sat-nav which is extremely responsive and no lag. Its fast and easy to use. It can also navigate you to all the Tesla supercharges. Driving and security features are also operated through the screen. You can view power usage and see remaining charge and the miles you will get on the charge. You can also use wide range of voice commands. There is full internet connectivity, so you can even check your emails online.

You can also adjust your door mirrors by enabling mirror-adjustment in screen and then using steering buttons to adjust it. You can also adjust your steering wheels the same way.

The seats adjustment can be done with the buttons on the side like most cars. The round button is for the lumbar support.

Seat-adjustment buttons

There are a plenty of places to put your things in. One is under the center console which also has 12 volts charging socket.

Center Console

However for the more modern people, you can open the flip which is located on center console right under the dash.

You can mount your phone here on the charging port.

Phone mounted on charging port

Door bins are decent sized as well. The cup holder in center console are fixed in size, but can hold any drink because of its bigger size. Due to its size some small drinks do rattle around and sometimes drop out when you accelerate fast.

Cup Holders, center console

Now the glove box. Its one thing that you can’t figure out how to open it straightaway. There is no lever or button for it, so of-course you open it from the infotainment screen. Click the glove box icon in screen and it opens.

Glove box button on screen

One more cool thing in the car is the magnetic cover of mirrors on sun visor.

Sun visor mirror

You can open the door by pressing a button on the door, but in case of emergency if the door button malfunctions or battery is dead you can open it through a manual override.

Door open button

There is plenty of legroom in the back, but people with height over 6 feet may struggle a little bit. You can have 3 people on the back seat because of flat floor.

Rear seats flat floor.

Rear seats have drop down center arm rest with cup-holders.

Rear seats cup-holders

The only issue with rear seats is since this is an electric car and has batteries in the floor, your feet are quite higher at an angle which can become uncomfortable in long journeys.

There is also coat hanger that comes down by pushing it.

Coat hanger

The position of roof light is mid center and properly positioned. It right where you hold the book to read.

Reading light on roof

There are also USB charging ports at the back of center condole under air vents.

USB Charging ports

There is also a little pocket at the back of the front seats to put your magazines in.

Seat pocket

The rear door bins are of large size which can easily hold bottles.

Rear door bin

One little criticism is read windows don’t go fully down. Some people might find this annoying.

Rear window fully down

Despite this because of large window size you do get good air with windows down while driving.

The glass roof reflects 99% of UV light so it doesn’t get hot inside. Inside temperature remain similar to cars with normal roof.

There is plenty of luggage space in rear boot which also has secondary compartment under the board which you can use to store charging cable.

The boot

This being an electric car, you don’t have an engine in the front. So instead you have another compartment in the front which you can open from mobile app or from infotainment screen.

Front trunk storage

The front seats are also very comfortable and finishing of material is top notch.

Front seats

This car is cool but here’s 5 annoying things about it; only one paint color is included in the price and that is black. If you want any other color you’re going to have to pay some more money. All this minimalism is cool but it would be good to have a few buttons for some key items such as fog lights. You have to go to the screen for everything. Eve using the mirrors through this system is a little bit complicated. The black trim on center console is bad not only for horrible fingerprints but it also scratches easily.

One drawback is when its raining and there’s a lot of water on the car, when you open the boot, that water drips inside the boot because there isn’t sufficient guttering like on normal cars.

Water dripping in boot

Thankfully there are still plenty of positives about the Tesla Model 3. Here’s some cool features; if you’re running low on battery, the satellite navigation system will automatically divert you to a Tesla supercharger and it will even preheat the battery for optimal charging when you get there.

If you’re planning a longer route, it’ll actually figure out places to stop to charge up but it won’t make you stay and charge there for longer than you need to.

Every Model 3 comes fitted with all the hardware necessary for all the available options and if you decide that you want to have one at a later date, you can actually just have it as a software update to enable it to work.

The upgrades to the car’s firmware can also be done over the internet for instance Tesla just figured out how to use the cameras on the car for the auto pilot for a dashcam and they just enabled it for everyone, so in the event of an accident you can just plug in a special USB stick to download the footage.

You can put the car into special modes, for instance; if a thief approaches the car, special security mode will spot them and it uses the sensors and cameras to record what they’re doing. It’ll even put a little display on the infotainment screen to say that they’re being watched.

Thief warning.

Then there’s dog mode if you want to leave your dog in the car, it’ll put a message on the screen that the air conditioning is at the right temperature to keep the dog happy. If the car runs out of battery and it starts to get too hot in there, it’ll send a note to your mobile phone to tell you to get back and save your pooch.

Dog mode

Then there’s valet mode. If you want to hand over your car at an airport or the hotel you can put into this mode and it will restrict the speed to 55 miles an hour, unlock the trunk and also disengage the infotainment systems so they can’t mess around with settings.

Valet mode option

Tesla Model 3 has a 75 kilowatt hour battery and according to Tesla that should be good for a range of up to 300 miles.

To charge this car you just press the flap at the side of back light which open it and then you can plug your charger. If you charge this car from normal 3 pin socket at home it’ll take a day and a half to charge from empty to full, however if you have a special fast AC charger, that time is cut to just half a day. That’s why you want to charge it from one of the DC charges from a 50 kilowatt charge, it’ll take about an hour to charge it from 10% to 80% full, or you could go to a Tesla supercharger which takes about 35 minutes. However, there’s a new v3 supercharger available for the Tesla Model 3 which means you can charge it twice a speed, in fact it can add 75 miles of range in just five minutes.

Charging port

This car is quick, it’s not quite as bonkers quick as a Tesla Model S P100 D in Ludacris plus mode, but it’s fast enough. When you’re just driving along because you’ve got no gearbox and you got the instant power from the electric motors when you put your foot down it just picks up so quick well yes it’s definitely a Tesla. When you hit a twisty road, you put the steering into sport mode so it’s heavier and it will surprise you because this thing isn’t just about straight-line pace.

Being an electric car it is quite heavy because you’ve got all those batteries but it really grips well in a corner. Also the steering is super fast, it’s just odd but it’s much fun with absolutely no engine noise. It’s fast and it’s fun, the model 3 ticks the enjoyment box better than any Tesla before it.

The performance version has slightly stiffer suspension so it doesn’t move around a bit over bumps in the road, but it’s not too bad. It doesn’t feel any further than something like a sporty Audi or BMW. You can get the normal model which has softer suspension and smaller wheels and it’ll be a bit better over bumps and bit more comfortable.

Tesla’s autopilot which is basically a clever cruise control system. You turn it on and it uses radars and cameras to keep a safe distance from the car in front and it also automatically steer as well. You do have to keep your hands on the steering wheel otherwise it’ll disengage but what it can do that other systems don’t is it will automatically change lanes and make turns.

Tesla’s Model 3 is a game changer and eating away the world’s luxury market. For example, BMW sales have been in decline last year in North America because of tough competition by Tesla. In fact BMW CEO just resigned from his position because of underestimating future of EV.

Contact the author: romanpearce@wheelsjoint.com


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