Tesla Model 3 Will Be Capped At 75 kWh, For Now, And Have More Range Than Chevy Bolt

1 month ago by Sebastian Blanco 168

Tesla Model 3

Tesla Model 3

Okay, we’ll admit that we’re not 100 percent, absolutely certain that the upcoming Tesla Model 3 will have more range than the all-electric Chevy Bolt EV. Still, sometimes you have to be willing to do just the simplest of tea-leaf reading and see what Tesla CEO Elon Musk is saying with this Tweet:

In response to a question on whether the 3 will indeed beat the Bolt, Musk simply said, “Oh so little faith.” We’ll take that to mean that the 3 will come with an EPA-approved sticker that shows more than 238 miles, then, especially given Musk’s other Tweet today that says that the 3’s maximum battery size will be 75 kWh.

Here’s what we’re thinking. Previously ,Tesla said the Model 3 would have a range of at least 215 miles. But now that the Bolt EV is here, with its impressive 238 miles of range from a 60-kWh battery, we can see Musk wanting to beat that number.

If everything about the Bolt and the 3 were the same, straight math would say that a 75-kWh pack in the 3 would give you something like 297.5 miles of range. We know that the two cars are not the same, but some educated guessing makes us think that the base 3 will offer something like 240-250 miles of range, and that Tesla will then offer a 75-kWh option to give you around 300. Does that logic work for you?

Of course, it’s interesting to note that Musk is – as always – looking to the future, and says that the 75-kWh limit is only accurate “at current cell/module energy densities.” The future is being written.

Source: Elon Musk on Twitter, hat tip to Dan Z!

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168 responses to "Tesla Model 3 Will Be Capped At 75 kWh, For Now, And Have More Range Than Chevy Bolt"

  1. Ambulator says:

    If they are sticking to their plans from when they made the estimate of 215 miles I don’t think the base Model 3 will have a higher range than the Bolt. Of course, if that is important to them they’ve had plenty of time to tweak the base battery capacity. In any case, the higher range option on the Model 3 will blow the Bolt out of the water.

    1. bro1999 says:

      Sure, more range….and will also blow the Bolt’s price out of the water too.

      1. SJC says:

        They said months ago the base model would have less than a 60 kWh battery pack.

        1. Rich says:

          @SJC – 59kWh is less than 60kWh. It wouldn’t surprise me if Tesla is adjusting their Model 3 product offering to “better” the Bolt.

          Musk did say that the base Model 3 would have a “minimum” 215 miles range.

          1. SJC says:

            This illustrates the point that people have money down but they don’t really know what it is.

      2. Probably will cost less than a Premium Bolt EV, if only option taken is the 75 kWh battery!

        55 kWh was previously sugested as the base battery capacity, and 20 extra kWh at even $200 per kWh, is just $4,000 more, for a $39,000 price! Still leaves some room for Elon’s excpected average price of $42,000!

        If Base Model 3 is $35,000, and Average is $42,000, it suggests top options take it to about $49,000-$50,000, except for some small numbers!

        Think 75 kWh, single motor ‘P75’, at about $50,000, just for fun!

        1. And at $50,000, will likely include the full AP2 suite, operational.

    2. turboro says:

      Having better Aerodynamics, lower weight and latest battety generation with higher density, Tesla may achieve 215+ miles with a 50Kwh battery and 310 with a 75D version.

      1. LOL says:

        55-260 miles
        65-311 miles
        75-355 miles
        It’s actually a 2018 car and has to be in 300 mile area.

      2. alohart says:

        I will be very surprised if the Model 3 is lighter than the Bolt. Unlike the almost 5k lb. Model S, the Model 3 will not feature all-aluminum construction but will include heavier steel. The Model 3 is larger than the Bolt as well. I think the Model 3 will be ~4k lb. However, it will be considerably more aerodynamic than the Bolt, so its highway efficiency should be better.

    3. It seems many people forget that simple statement Elon made, that ALL Tesla’s are continuing to be improved, each day, each week, and each month; and you will never be able to simply buy the ‘Best Tesla’, because a better one is coming right behind that one!

      Continuous Improvement, continuously!

      As to range, I doubt the base Model 3 will get less range than the Model S with 60 kWh, and that is why they are stopping sales of that mid April. Even the early reveal promised ‘Al Least’ 215 Miles!

      Could they offer first cars with under an EPA ‘Combined’ rating of less than 238?

      Not likely! Tesla has a reputation to keep, and competition to Beat! (if the Bolt EV is that)

      I would guess now, Elon will push for a verifiable 245 Mile Base Minimum, and offer further choices of ~285, & 325 Miles Range, with about 300 Miles Range in a Performance ‘P’ Model!

      1. Brandon says:

        I agree. I seriously doubt that the Model 3 will be less than the Bolt’s 238 mile range. At least around mid 200s is the minimum for an EV that’s going to be your only vehicle.

        Various factors can reduce the number of miles a long range EV can travel.
        These include battery degradation as the vehicle gets older, cold weather, and reductions experienced when traveling after an 80% fast charge.

        Reasonable realistic figures of the reduced percentage possible for these three factors are as follows:

        Battery degradation in an 8-10 years old car: 10% loss.

        Cold weather loss: 30% loss.

        Reduction from an 80% fast charge: 30% (adding 10% for a buffer til dead)

        Using the Bolt with 238 miles as an example, and deducting these percentages, we get this progression:

        214 miles left because of battery degradation for an older EV.

        150 miles in cold weather

        105 miles after fast charging

    4. Chris says:

      Does model s have more than 300 miles of range?

      Musk : Sure!!

    5. needa says:

      On that 215 miles, Musk said ‘at least’.

      1. needa says:

        I see now that Robert already covered that part.

        1. Thanks! I at least Hope I have some understanding of the Man and his Company, after connecting with their vehicle owners, and general news since ~2010!

    6. ijonjack says:

      I read somewhere that some GM dealers in some areas were already giving sizeable discounts 0ff the Bolt’s sticker Price. THEY’RE RUNNING SCARED With Good Reason! M3 Will Kill Bolt sales Unless they Do something about their BIG price for such a small EV in the very near future. Model 3 competitors will be in for a Big Surprise .

  2. bro1999 says:

    So a 75 kWh Model 3 will of course have more than 238 miles of range.

    I guess the question is will the base $35k Model 3 (if/when it’s ever released) have more than 238 miles.

    1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

      Actually I’m not asking that question. I’m asking two different questions:
      (1) How much range will the base model have?
      (2) How fast will it charge?

      1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

        (Question 3 for many people would be “How much for the battery upgrade?”)

        1. Battery upgrade cost:
          Elon’s cost @ $125/kWh = $2,500.00; Retail Cost @ $200.00 per kWh = $4,000 (Max, for 20 kWh, I expect! 75 kWh – Base of 55 kWh = 20 kWh upgrade option!)

          1. Rich says:

            There’s a lot of people out there quoting Model S option pricing or BMW 3 Series pricing. I don’t see it. Musk quoted $42K for the average price.

            I think you’re on target or very close with the battery pricing. I was estimating $125/kWh cost and $250/kWh retail cost. The question becomes what are the average options that will make up the $42K average Model 3 price. I think this is AWD, bigger battery, AutoPilot (not full autonomous), and one other option (glass roof or better seats or cold weather package or premium paint or premium stereo or?)

          2. arne-nl says:

            The upgrade cost for the Model S from 90D to 100D is $ 3000. ($ 300/kWh). But the difference between the 75D and 90D is $ 10,000, or $ 667 / kWh.

            So it depends on what else you get with the 75 kWh battery in terms of performance.

            I guess the cost for a 20 kWh upgrade ends up quite a bit more expensive than $ 4000.

      2. DonC says:

        The answer to both questions will turn on the capacity of the pack. If it’s 45 kWh then less range and slower charging. If it’s 60 kWh then slightly less range and slightly faster charging. If 75 kWh then further and faster. Have to wait to see.

        A lot also depends on the acceleration. There is a tradeoff. You can gear it to go faster or further but not both.

        1. Why would a car with a decent Cd of 0.21, have less range on the same 60 kWh pack size as the Bolt EV that has a Cd of 0.32?

          The Bolt is not just half the width of the Model 3!

          1. SparkEV says:

            One can look to SparkEV vs BMW i3 ratings. SparkEV gets better efficiency when driven at constant speed, yet old i3 got better EPA range rating. CdA doesn’t tell the whole story, especially with EPA test that’s using the brakes much of the time.

          2. Taser54 says:

            The obvious answer, GM/LG electronics and motor design are more efficient than Tesla’s.

            1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:


              Reality check: Tesla is the leader in EV tech. If the Model 3 doesn’t have a better miles per kWh rating than the Bolt EV, it will only be because the M3 will have better acceleration.

            2. Vr6loco says:

              I believe Bolt uses permanent magnet and Tesla uses induction. Permanent magnet is more expensive and a little more efficient, as the induction is cheaper and more powerful. Correct me if I’m wrong?

              1. SJC says:

                Some quote motor efficiency with PEAK efficiency numbers like 90%, the motor as NOT that efficient over the whole operating range.

      3. unlucky says:

        I don’t think Tesla is going to put figures on how fast it charges. It’ll be slower than a Model S due to a small pack and relatively few cells. And they don’t really spend any time talking about Model S charge rates, merely that they Supercharge and it is quite fast. So I don’t think they’ll put a charge rate on the Model 3 either.

        1. georgeS says:

          “It’ll be slower than a Model S due to a small pack.”

          You have to include the M3’s MPGe in the calculation. It may charge at the same power as the S75 but the fact that the M3 will get better miles/kwh means it will charge at a higher miles per minute of charge time.

          1. unlucky says:

            I wasn’t including the efficiency difference. But even including the efficiency difference I expect it to be slower charging than a Model S. I don’t expect a Model 3 75 to charge at the same rate as a Model S 75 because of the smaller number of cells. Fewer, larger cells usually means lower power density and that means reduced charge and discharge rates (performance).

            Maybe I’m speaking too soon. Maybe Tesla has some anode improvements that will mitigate the reduction in cell count. We’ll know for sure if Tesla tells us. As I mentioned, I don’t expect them to do so. There is no reason for them to discuss Supercharging peak rates and curves, they don’t do on Model S. 75s don’t charge as fast as 90s, 60s were much slower than 85s. Tesla never publicized any of this and I don’t blame them for it either.

            1. georgeS says:


              “I don’t expect a Model 3 75 to charge at the same rate as a Model S 75 because of the smaller number of cells.”

              I don’t think the larger cells mean they will charge more slowly….but I can’t produce a reference to support my statement.

              1. unlucky says:

                The energy density (storage) of a cell is roughly proportional to the volume of electrolyte in it. The power density (max power input/output rate) is roughly proportional to the surface area of the anode/cathode (the ion exchange surfaces).

                When you make something bigger, the volume goes up with the cube of the thing but surface areas go up with the square. For a given amount of energy storage, the bigger the cells are the fewer you use. So the surface area of ion exchange typically goes down when you use bigger cells.

                Tesla has switched to bigger cells. With no other change in chemistry and equal pack size (volume) their power density would drop and thus the pack would charge and discharge slower. Do they have chemistry changes to make to counter this? Maybe. But my general expectation would be to expect reduced charge/discharge rates.

                It won’t make any real difference for AC charging of course, those are not usually pack limited but charger limited.

                1. zzzzzzzzzz says:

                  Musk did confirmed different chemistry in some interview, I don’t remember source. You can only guess if it just minor tweak or complete switch to NMC. It may be better charge rate if battery cooling is more or less fixed as in P100D. At this point I doubt if even EM can tell for sure how it will roll out, integration validation vehicles are just starting to appear.

                  1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

                    It was in one of those investor calls. Both Elon and JD Straubel said the chemistry would be different in the Gigafactory cells.

                    I could dig up the citation, but it wouldn’t be worth it; they just said there would be different chemistry without giving any details at all.

                2. koz says:

                  No way for any of us to know how the 3 will charge. Chemistry and physical makeup of cells are different. Larger doesn’t automatically mean slow since it is defined by C rates and cooling capacity. The same cells in otherwise identical situations will be able to accept charge at different rates if they are cooled differently.

                  Given that charge rate is an important criteria for Tesla, I’m guessing they did a fair amount of work on this in the design of the new packs and cells. I’ld be very surprised if they were not capable of charging a better per cell rates than the S packs. Given the expected efficiency increases in the 3, I expect the charge rates rate for the smaller 3 pack to be at least on par with the S 75KWH and the larger 3 pack to be on par with the S 100.

                  1. unlucky says:

                    Actually, yes, I explained how larger means slower. It takes into account C rates, etc.

                    Let’s say each cell can charge at 1C (low, but let’s go with it). If you have 3,000 cells then the pack can charge at 3,000C. If you then revise the pack to use 2,000 larger cells and each can charge at 1C you now can charge at 2,000C.

                    I don’t expect the efficiency to rise to meet other cars given their AC induction motors.

                    I also would suggest that charge rate is NOT an important criteria for Tesla. I will mention again that they do not advertise their charge rates. They do not go out of their way to inform about how smaller packs charge slower in Model Ses nor do they pay a penalty in the marketplace for this fact. So I see no way that charge rates are super critical for the 3 either.

                    Even if they do nothing to counter the reduction in charge rate larger cells would produce the Model 3 will still charge fast and be a very marketable car.

                    1. David D. Nelson says:

                      “Let’s say each cell can charge at 1C (low, but let’s go with it). If you have 3,000 cells then the pack can charge at 3,000C. If you then revise the pack to use 2,000 larger cells and each can charge at 1C you now can charge at 2,000C.”

                      That is only true if the cells are in parallel and the cells have exactly the same Ah capacity. If the 3000 cells are 2Ah cells you would have a 6000Ah battery. If the 2000 cells are 3Ah cell you still have a 6000Ah battery. 1C is the same for both packs.

                      The way the packs would be done with the example cells is something like 30 parallel cell groups 100 in series which would be a 60Ah pack or 20 parallel cell groups 100 in series which would still be a 60Ah pack. No difference.

                    2. SparkEV says:

                      Look to SparkEV if you want counter example of C rating vs battery capacity. With one of the smallest battery among EV at 18.4 kWh, it has the highest charging C rating among any, including Tesla. It achieves that with 192 cells, 96 in series but only 2 in parallel.

                      Tesla 3 will be using new cells, maybe different chemistry, who knows what else. To guess that it will be necessarily lower C rating due to fewer cells is just wrong. SparkEV proves that.

                    3. zzzzzzzzzz says:

                      “If you have 3,000 cells then the pack can charge at 3,000C”

                      You may have increase in absolute units (kW or A), but C is relative unit, it is battery capacity per hour. So 3000 batteries will charge at the same 1C as 1 battery, as 3000 batteries have 3000x capacity, whatever connection schemes you will use.

                    4. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

                      unlucky said:

                      “I don’t expect the efficiency to rise to meet other cars given their AC induction motors.”


                      Tesla would have to lower its powertrain efficiency to “meet” other cars!

                      Here’s a reality check:

                      Tesla Model S85 gets an EPA range rating of 265 miles; that’s 3.118 miles per kWh.

                      The 2013 Nissan Leaf, on the same EPA driving test cycle, got 3.125 miles per kWh. (The EPA changed the way it calculated the estimated range in later years, so the Leaf appeared to improve its range without actually doing so.)

                      So the Model S has almost precisely the same energy efficiency as a car that’s lighter and has a much lower acceleration performance!

                    5. zzzzzzzzzz says:

                      “The 2013 Nissan Leaf, on the same EPA driving test cycle, got 3.125 miles per kWh.”

                      You must be smoking something, and as usual drunk from Kool-Aid.
                      Nissan Leaf 2013 got 28 kWh/100 mi. Model S 85 got 38 kWh/100 mi. This is official EPA test data:
                      And 2013 is a bit old year to choose, it is 2017 on calendar. 2017 Ioniq Electric gets 25 kWh/100 mi.

                3. arne-nl says:

                  “When you make something bigger, the volume goes up with the cube of the thing but surface areas go up with the square.”

                  You’re making a critical logic error in that statement. The battery is a rolled up sandwich of anode, electrolyte, separator and cathode. If the thickness of those layers stay the same (why wouldn’t they?), the surface area goes up with the cube of the size too.

                  I am quite certain George S is right and the power density of the larger cells is the same, since the other important characteristics of the cell stay the same. There might be slightly less surface for cooling the cell, but I don’t expect that to be a huge factor.

            2. David D. Nelson says:

              “I don’t expect a Model 3 75 to charge at the same rate as a Model S 75 because of the smaller number of cells. Fewer, larger cells usually means lower power density and that means reduced charge and discharge rates (performance).”

              That is not true given the same material used in both batteries. If they are both at the same pack voltage and provided that the Ah capacity are the same. The C rate will be identical. The only limiting factor would be thermal control due to the reduced surface area/unit volume.

            3. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

              unlucky said:

              “Fewer, larger cells usually means lower power density and that means reduced charge and discharge rates (performance).”

              All else being equal, yes. But all else isn’t at all equal. The Model 3 battery pack will have the advantage of five years of improvements in battery chemistry and design, with commensurate improvements in energy density and power density. Five years of improvements as compared to 2012, the year the Model S debuted.

        2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

          unlucky said:

          “I don’t think Tesla is going to put figures on how fast it charges. It’ll be slower than a Model S due to a small pack and relatively few cells.”

          I’m going to stick my neck out and predict the M3 will charge faster, in terms of miles of added range per minute, than a MS or MX. I think that will happen because of improvements in the how the battery pack is made, improvements in power electronics, and quite possibly cells which are designed to handle a higher “C” rate.

          Of course, the fact that the M3 will use fewer kWh per mile (or get more miles per kWh) will help that number, too.

          We’ve already had a hint of moving in the direction of newer Tesla cars charging faster from the redesign of the battery pack for the S100, which is said to charge faster and have an improved cooling system. (And yes, I know that all else being equal, it would charge faster simply because it has more capacity and more cells. But from what Tesla claims, I don’t think all else is equal.)

          But even if I’m proven right, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re wrong. You were, of course, talking in terms of kWh added per minute of fast charge, and I’m talking miles added per minute. Different metrics.

          1. unlucky says:

            I don’t believe the 100 has more cells than an 85 or 90.

            Any improvement would mostly be from higher capacity cells which means that their charge rate, which is unchanged when expressed in C goes up when expressed in kW because C went up.

            Indeed better cooling could allow the pack to be charged at a higher rate before backing up, within reason. But even a small improvement of this sort could make up for reduction initial charge rate.

            1. MacroP says:

              The 100kWh pack has more cells. 8256 vs 7104. 96S82P vs 96S74P. More cells are jammed into each of the 16 modules.

              1. MacroP says:

                Sorry, I meant to say 96S86P for the bigger pack. So 16% more cells inside.

              2. Nix says:

                Thanks for bringing facts to a fud-fight. It is like bringing a bazooka to a spork-fight. Unlucky’s ignorance of even the basic facts about Tesla battery packs greatly undermines his fud.

    2. unlucky says:

      I can’t see how a 60kWh would match the Bolt range. Tesla’s efficiencies just aren’t as high due to their use of induction motors.

      But then again there may not even be a 60kWh model, base could be 65kWh.

      And it is rather theoretical anyway. Tesla will surely deliver the higher capacity ones first, just as in the past. What a 60kWh (or other base) model would get will be merely a koan through 2017 and probably at least half of 2018.

      1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        I think you are overstating the rather minimal difference in efficiency between induction motors and permanent magnet motors. The improved efficiency from the M3’s better aerodynamics (lower drag) will almost certainly be a much more significant difference.

        It’s also quite possible that the efficiency of Tesla’s inverter and other power electronics are better than LG Electronics’, even though LG is using GM’s design. Both GM and Tesla’s original tech for the inverter came from the same place: Alan Cocconi’s invention of the modern AC integrated motor controller. (In fact, all modern highway-capable production EVs use AC motors with inverters following Cocconi’s design.) Cocconi invented that for a GM concept car, the Impact, which was the prototype for the EV1. Cocconi later co-founded AC Propulsion, and Tesla licensed their original EV tech from them.

        Presumably both GM and Tesla have done R&D to improve on Cocconi’s original design. But Tesla has had a stronger motive to try harder and spend more resources on developing improvements, so my guess is they have the edge in efficiency.

        1. unlucky says:

          I think you’re underestimating the non-minimal difference in efficiency between AC induction motors and permanent magnet motors.

          Prepare to be surprised. I can see no reason a 55kWh Model 3 would even be able to match a Bolt with 60kW pack (comparing 2WD to 2WD). The Tesla could, if they do well, perhaps match on highway (where it matters more for longer trips) but I can’t see how they would catch up on city due to the lower motor efficiency.

          I expect a 75kWh pack Model 3 should be able to pass a Bolt overall. A 75kWh AWD model should be able to pass it with gusto due to their trick of using two different gearings (combined with their better aero of course).

          1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

            I was willing to give you give you the benefit of the doubt, Unlucky, and engage with you as if you were merely ignorant of many of the technical aspects of batteries, and ignorant about Tesla’s superior EV engineering. But from this response, it looks more like Nix is right: You appear to be deliberately posting anti-Tesla FUD.

            I keep pointing out factual errors in your posts regarding technical aspects of EVs, Unlucky, yet you keep arguing with me. At some point, your ignorance starts to look willful.

      2. Nix says:

        A year ago Tesla finished testing on their brand new from a clean sheet of paper inverter for the Model 3. It is more efficient than their previous inverters they had been building from off the shelf parts for the S, X, and Roadster. So we know the drivetrain will be more efficient.

        The TM3 will be narrower than the S, so even if the coefficient of drag were the same, the total drag resistance will be less for the M3.

        Lighter battery packs. Likely lighter overall weight.

        Likely narrower smaller tires if the weight and performance is less (no need for big fat tires).

        chances are high that it will be more efficient when comparing AWD to AWD and RWD to RWD between the S and 3.

        Which shouldn’t be surprising, considering that is how most every ICE car maker’s lines of sedans work. Top of the line less efficient than down the line.

        1. unlucky says:

          I don’t even get this statement “from off the shelf parts”. I’m sure the old one and new one use “off the shelf parts” to the same extent, for whatever that means. Tesla doesn’t make IGTs, they don’t make SiC MOSFETs. Sure, they can work with vendors to repackage parts, but that’s not going to affect efficiency that much.

          I don’t see how it will have much narrower tires if it is to remain a luxury car. Tesla still seems committed to performance.

          I do agree the car will be more efficient than the S. But the S is massively less efficient than a Bolt (20%) and it would have to be 8% more efficient to match ranges using a 55kWh pack versus a 60kWh pack.

          The Model S (75) is 34kWh per 100mi. It would have to go to 23kWh per 100mi to get 238 miles from 55kWh. That would mean an S to 3 increase in efficiency of 47%!

          I just don’t see it happening (2WD versus 2WD, etc.)

          1. Bill Howland says:

            Hehe, facts don’t matter so much with that guy…

            But anyway, 55 kwh and ‘at least’ 215 miles, makes for a very good base car. 75 kwh option would be a significant improvement over the base – certainly better than the current BOLT ev.

          2. Nix says:

            unlucky spread disinformation saying “I don’t even get this statement “from off the shelf parts”. I’m sure the old one and new one use “off the shelf parts” to the same extent, for whatever that means. Tesla doesn’t make IGTs”

            Unlucky, if you don’t know what Tesla has been doing, please feel free to ask instead of just ASSuming. Tesla used off the shelf TO-247 insulated-gate bipolar transistor packages (IGBTs) for the inverters they built for the Roadster and Model S/X.

            But for the the Model 3, Tesla started with a blank sheet to develop completely brand new inverters, including their own power semiconductor package. (source posted multiple times previously, ibid.)

            You are yet again behind in your information, and spreading disinformation.


            Unlucky realized: “I do agree the car will be more efficient than the S”

            Good, since that was the entire context of my entire post, and I made no attempt to make any other comparison….

          3. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

            unlucky said:

            “I do agree the car will be more efficient than the S. But the S is massively less efficient than a Bolt (20%) and it would have to be 8% more efficient to match ranges using a 55kWh pack versus a 60kWh pack.”

            The Model 3 is going to have a smaller battery pack and a longer EPA-rated range and have better acceleration performance, than the Bolt EV. So yeah, definitely more than 8% better efficiency. Of course, most of that is going to come from significantly lower drag; a smaller amount will come from Tesla’s superior EV powertrain technology, and superior energy efficiency, as compared to GM’s. The energy efficiency of Tesla’s powertrain can’t be that much better than GM’s, only slightly better, because EV powertrains are already so efficient that there’s not much room for improvement.

            Try as you might, Unlucky, denying reality doesn’t actually change reality.

  3. Mdstj says:

    You have to remember a 75 kW battery pack will yield maybe 69 kW of usable battery. Also, at 3.5 miles per kilowatt when it comes in around 242 miles. That’s at 70 to 75 mph. So, EPA rating maybe 275 miles to 280 miles. Not bad for $35,000 EV. I hope Tesla is working on the superchargers because they need to at least double by the first quarter of 2018

    1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

      The 375 won’t be $35k.

      If they’re selling a $35k version it’ll have a smaller battery than that.

      1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:


        And the EPA’s range tests aren’t performed at 70-75 MPH; if I recall correctly, they’re performed at speeds averaging about 55 MPH.

        So by that metric, we can expect the M3 to get appreciably better than 3.5 miles per kWh; quite possibly something close to 4.0 miles per kWh. At 4.0 m/kWh, 75 kWh would yield exactly 300 miles, which is what the writer of this article guessed… so clearly an educated guess! And yes, I am using full capacity rather than “usable capacity”, because full capacity is usually the number that EV makers give us. Generally they don’t specify usable capacity; Tesla certainly doesn’t. So at best that would be a guess.

        1. Bryan Whitton says:

          SHoot, my Leaf gets 4.4 miles/kWh of course that is in rush hour traffic @ 8 MPH. 🙂

          1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:


            Record-setting ranges in EVs are typically achieved by driving at a steady speed around 25-30 MPH. Above that speed, drag due to air resistance really starts to bite into range.

            I’m not sure you’d get any better range at 8 MPH. It might actually be less. At very low speeds, the rolling resistance actually goes up. But I’m not sure just how fast that “very low speed” is; 8 MPH might be above that.

            * * * * *

            As I’ve said before, I think it would be far more useful if the official range ratings for EVs would be given for different speeds: 35 MPH, 45, 55, 65, 75, and maybe even 85 MPH for speed demons. When driving long distances on the freeway, more people are going to be driving at 75 MPH than 55.

            1. Ben says:

              First I’ve heard that low speeds can increase rolling resistance. Can you point me towards info on this? I’ve always thought the lower speeds performed worse because of fixed energy costs like the on board computer or climate control. Of course both can be true.

              1. Maybe this: to start an Aircraft, like an Airliner, moving forward, from a point where it is stopped, takes about 80% of the take-off thrust to start it rolling, then they drop back to idle thrust.

                If you are in Stop and Go Traffic, you face a similar challenge, but since you are not blowing air, but twisting an axle, you don’t see much excitement arount the effect. It is, however, still there!

                So, an Actual 8 Mph Steady State speed, would be more efficient than an Average speed of 8 Mph that included stops and speeds to 16 Mph, and slowing and stopping, accelerating again, over and over!

                You also don’t capture 100% of the energy used to accelerate, when you regen brake, assuming even if you don’t friction brake.

                1. SparkEV says:

                  Simpler explanation is that it’s the acceleration that makes it less efficient, not the speed. But what he’s asking is other energy use (he calls fixed use) taking energy that cause more rolling resistance, which isn’t true.

                  To answer his Q, fixed energy is “fixed” at any speed while rolling resistance increase almost linearly with speed. Actual increase is slightly exponential due to aerodynamic force pushing down on the car.

                  At low speed, fixed energy would be much higher portion of overall energy use, because overall energy use would be lower. 0 MPH would be 100% fixed energy use where rolling resistance is 0. See my blog post on SparkEV range for more explanations.


                  1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

                    “At low speed, fixed energy would be much higher portion of overall energy use…”

                    Yes, and my mistaken assertion that kicked off this sub-thread probably came from reading that at low speeds, rolling resistance is a larger portion of the total drag, but (I now realize) only because air resistance is so low at low speeds.

              2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

                Ben asked:

                “First I’ve heard that low speeds can increase rolling resistance. Can you point me towards info on this?”

                Hmmm, I’m going to retract that assertion. I remember reading such a claim, I think it was in a treatise or blog post about the mechanical efficiency of the Tesla Roadster drivetrain and/or regenerative braking. But I can’t find that (perhaps it’s no longer online?) and quite possibly I misunderstood what was being said, because looking at online graphs of speed vs. rolling resistance just now, I don’t see any indicating it’s ever higher at very low speeds.

                [Miss Emily Litella voice:] Nevermind!

            2. Mdstj says:

              I agree 100%. I wish manufactures would list distance at common speeds up to 75 or 80 mph.

            3. Aircraft get owner manuals that offer charts to see this, using % of power settings.

              But for cars, we would also need to chart in Temperature, Grade, Road Surface, along with Speed, to get fine grained data! Towing loads could be added, and towed shape, for vehicles with Hitches, like the Model 3 is expected to have!

              One big range challenge I had in a ICE rental car, was, after driving 90+% Highway miles , Toronto, to Oshkosh, to West Texas, I had no understanding of City Driving Ranges, etc!

              Then, with 3/4 of a tank showing on the Guage, I took a drive down Farm Road 170, from Presidio, TX, Southward.

              It was a very twisty road, with very few long straights, and mostly speeds of under 40 Mph! Yet I still ended up with an ‘Add Fuel’ indication after just about 45-50 miles!

              I was lucky to discover a resort that stored Gas for Golf Carts, that sold me about 15 Gallons!

              I was suffering my own version of Range Anxiety on that drive!

            4. SparkEV says:

              I agree that far more useful than a single number is rating at various speeds. Just monitor power use in kW at various speeds and publish that along with usable battery capacity and braking efficiency. Then we can calculate the ranges, efficiency, or anything else. That was my motivation for range polynomial blog post, but I had to extrapolate the data from various source.


  4. Doggydogworld says:

    Model 3 should have less range than Model S. I believe this is one reason the S60 was discontinued.

    I expect Model 3 in 55 and 75 kWh versions with 240 and 320 mile range.

    1. turboro says:

      I expect the same, to achieve low entry price of 35k. The longer range can be expected too, using new battery generation and having much better aerodynamics than the bolt, otherwise Tesla is doing something wrong

    2. Orphancarguy says:

      Exactly. My guess was also 55 kWh 240 miles because Bolt 238 @ 60 kWh so exceed GM marks three ways on weight/pack size, price and range…if only slightly. 75 kWh = 300 miles, maybe 300.2 or so. D versions to finesse that to 250-ish and 315-320 ish

    3. Jason says:

      I disagree. How did your original iPhone battery compare to the latest iPhone battery? By your reasoning there would never be any improvement because it would impact negatively on the older model.

      To move forward the range has to be inconsequential to the model, eg: both cars just get somewhere between 200-300mi range, or 300-400mi, whatever that number needs to be.

      Model 3 is latest car using newest technology, if it goes 300mi in $35k form, awesome. It will go at least 215mi as stated by Musk, and maybe it will use a 45kWh battery because it is more efficient vehicle and that gets the price to $35k. Maybe it uses 60kWh battery because the vehicle is not efficient and that is what is needed for 215mi range. Time will tell. We also know the max size is 75kWh, so my guess would be three battery sizes, 45kWh for bare 215mi & 60kWh for somewhere near 250mi & 75kWh for 300+mi.

      But as to Model S/X, even these two get different range for same battery, based on size and weight. As continuous improvement, either they become more efficient or the battery gets bigger. Elon said it wouldn’t get bigger than 100kWh, but if you can fit 200kWh in the same space for the same price (say 5yrs time), why wouldn’t you do that? If competition bring out bigger batteries with more range, then you might have to compete with that. It will all depend on what range is acceptable, just like ICE all get somewhere around 350-450mi on a tank, so EV’s Will find that equilibrium point for range.

      Now if you work backwards and want 215mi range, at 4mi/kW, that means 54kWh usable battery required. If you can squeeze 6mi/kW then you only need 36kWh usable. Worst case, if you only get 3mi/kW then you need 72kWh usable and I don’t think that would be the case with Model 3. I’m averaging 3.85mi/kW in my Leaf, which is supposed to be an inefficient EV, so by that measure you would need 56kWh usable. So my bet is a 45kWh battery with about 42-43 usable on the base Model 3, averaging 5mi/kW to give a 215mi range. Then they have nice 25kWh increases that yield 250 & 320mi range increases.

      1. Mdstj says:

        My leave had a big variation in expressway interstate driving and driving 45 or 50 miles an hour around town. My model S – 85 does not have those big variation maybe a half a mile Per kilowatt

  5. Tony Marco says:

    Tesla Model 3 = 300 mile range

    Have lots of faith !!!

    1. bro1999 says:

      A Model S 75D gets 259 EPA rated miles.
      A Model 3 75D? 300+?

      I’m guessing a 3 75D would also cost upwards of $50k to start.

      1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

        If 55kWh base battery then 75D would be
        + D
        + 20kWh
        + x

        We already have a price for D on the S and X and it’s $5k.

        +20kWh should be $5k or less if it’s just additional modules.

        So, if the base is $35k, it’d be the x that ups the price, like additional power.

      2. Remember, Elon said the ‘Average’ delivery price he expected, to be ‘$42,000’, so with 30% off of battery costs, the ‘Big’ battery could add as little as $3,500, to not much over $4,000, as 20 kWh @ $200.00 Per kWh = $4,000!

        Assuming base IS 55 kWh, not changed to 60 kWh, just to beat the Bolt, with some good margin, like minimum 255 Miles Range @ 65 Mph!

        1. Jason says:

          Don’t forget your talking EPA rating, not cruising at 65mph.

    2. Waiting says:

      While on a road trip, I would only want to drive two hours before taking a break anyway. That could be 120-140 miles of range before charging. So any more range than that is icing on the cake.

      Elon is not going to put a base Model 3 on the street unless it has more base range than the Chevy Bolt. Chevy did an incredible job putting the Bolt on the streets as soon as they did and it is really a nice little car. But, in my opinion, Tesla is the premier electric car manufacturer and they will continue to out-perform other EV manufacturers.

  6. Alaa says:

    Let us take the IONIQ electric that has a range of 280 km (NEDC) and a pack of 28 kWh. Now the IONIQ has a drag of 0.24. The M3 has 0.21. Both have similar frontal area. So if the M3 has a 55 kWh pack it should go for at least 600 km.

    I would prefer a smaller pack than that. 600 km is very nice but the price is important. Also the time it takes to charge. The smaller the pack the more they can make them. So there is plenty of room here for Tesla to adjust the size of the pack to blow any other out of the water.

    1. Doggydogworld says:

      NEDC is more about weight than drag. The Model 3 should be 15% heavier than the Ioniq. I’d guess a 55 kWh Model 3 will score about 500 km NEDC, 240 mile EPA.

      1. Alaa says:

        In either case 500 km or 240 miles that is plenty for me.

  7. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

    Elon Musk tweeted:

    “The shorter wheelbase only allows for a 75 kWh pack in Model 3…

    Hmmm, I see the article here is stating that the larger (or largest?), upgraded M3 battery pack will have 75 kWh. While this is a logical inference from Elon’s tweet, that’s not actually what he said.

    But what the heck, for the joy of counting chickens before they’re hatched, I’ll go ahead and jump on the bandwagon of writer Sebastian Blanco’s premature celebration!

    75 kWh for the larger (largest?) M3 battery pack? Hey, I love it when one of my predictions comes in bang on the mark!
    🙂 🙂 🙂

    Both ends of this two-headed llama are doing Pushy’s happy dance! 😀

  8. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

    “…some educated guessing makes us think that the base 3 will offer something like 240-250 miles of range, and that Tesla will then offer a 75-kWh option to give you around 300. Does that logic work for you?”

    Certainly I do expect the M3’s EPA range to be (as the writer suggests) only slightly better than the Bolt EV’s EPA range. Tesla has the “fast follower” advantage here; they have very likely engineered and/or tweaked the M3 to slightly edge out the Bolt EV’s official range.

    There doesn’t appear to be any good reason for Tesla to give M3 a base range which is quite a bit higher than the Bolt EV’s range. Doing so would drive up the price of the car without offering much if any competitive advantage. Tesla would be better off spending its money elsewhere in improving the car and/or adding luxury touches, and I have no doubt Tesla is doing exactly that.

  9. Dennis says:


  10. Spider-Dan says:

    Given that the Bolt only has 1 battery option, it is expected that there will exist a configuration of the MIII that has more range than the Bolt. The question is at what price that will be.

    If there’s a $50k MIII with 250 miles of range, that isn’t really “more range” than the Bolt in a meaningful way.

  11. Samwise says:

    Once you hit 200+ miles who really cares about range…

    1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

      People who live in cold places.
      People who want regularly to drive 200 to 250 miles.
      People who want to drive longer distances so appreciate the extra range and faster charging.

      Horses for courses.

      1. 2EVsCO says:

        All valid points. Power in and out of the battery is inherently tied to it’s energy storage capacity. Hopefully I can afford the next Roadster since the M3 is not looking to be a major performance machine.

      2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        Thank you.

        Also, people who want to be able to drive those 200+ miles even after the car has aged a few years and the battery capacity has dropped slightly.

        More importantly, let’s remember that the standard for gasmobiles is to have a minimum of 300 miles of range. That’s surely no accident! Anyone who thinks competition won’t continue to push up the average range of BEVs to at least 300 miles (and very likely more, to account for range loss due to cold weather and other factors) is ignoring a pretty clear signal from the existing automobile market.

        1. Jason says:

          Couldn’t agree more. I think 200kWh battery will be the goal as battery tech improves. With 200kWh you remove any problem associated with climate and you add the ability for serious towing.
          For an SUV or truck I will not be surprised if 400-500 becomes the goal. As battery prices come down and batteries improve, the design of vehicles with poor aerodynamics will increase. Not all vehicles are suited to the low aerodynamic profile of current EV’s.

          1. Even pickups don’t need to be so square in the front, trying to body slam their way through the air!

            Newer large Semi Rigs are working and developing more aero shaped Cabs! Pickups could learn a thing or two from them!

            Also, electric drives don’t need as much air cooling as heat engines (Gas or Diesel ICE’s).

            1. alohart says:

              Square, angular shapes are “manly” while aerodynamic shapes are “sissy”. An aerodynamic pickup truck wouldn’t sell as well as current pickup trucks. Stupid, but true.

    2. Ziv says:

      200 miles of range is nice, but remember that you really want to have at least 30-50 miles in reserve when you get to a Supercharger, just in case. And it would help to have 20% left to charge when you get enough juice for the next leg of the trip. I.e., if you want to go 350 miles in a car with 200 miles of AER, you would only drive 150-170 miles before you hit a charger, if the charger location works perfectly for you.
      But then you would like to charge without any tapering due to the pack being nearly full so you would like to only charge to 160 miles or 80% of pack capacity. But a 200 mile pack would go over 80% way too soon. And the total miles for this mild roadtrip would require 2 stops instead of 1.
      A 250 mile AER changes the numbers considerably, and in your favor. It isn’t perfect, but it gets you closer to where you want to be faster.

    3. Nix says:

      People who want to stay out of the taper when fast charging?

      Let’s say you reach a supercharger with 25 miles of range left, and the next supercharger is 125 miles away and you want to minimize charge time.

      Just for kicks, let’s say each battery tapers off at 50% capacity.

      For a car with 300 mile range, you never hit the taper, and speed away with 150 miles of battery remaining to get you to the next supercharger.

      For a car with 200 mile range, you hit the taper after getting 75 miles worth of charge, and you have to endure 50 more miles of charging after the charge rate starts to taper off.

      So even going the same distance, well within the range of both cars, you could spend more time charging.


      There is also lifespan issues. The 300 mile range battery could last 1/3rd more total miles than the 200 mile battery, based upon the total number of charge cycles.

  12. 2EVsCO says:

    I went and looked at Bolt today at a dealer in CO that had them imported from CA and it is TINY. My guess is the Model 3 will have even less usable space which makes me very happy I cancelled my M3 reservation. I still am in awe they will not offer a dual drive or performance M3 to launch and that alone would have made me cancel my reservation had I not cancelled it earlier. I would never trade the size of my Rav4 EV for a Bolt or M3 even for the extra 20 kWh and 100 miles of range. I have a Gen1 Volt for long trips and it can fit a lot of junk too if you need it to. I know it can fit 20 bags of blow in insulation just fine!

    1. scotty franco says:

      I would not mention to Tesla that you intend to transport blow in your new car…

    2. unlucky says:

      I frequently load 4 people into my Bolt and no one ever says it is small (in the inside) in fact most are quite impressed and one seems to be talking himself into getting one.

      I will say however that every time I see a RAV4 EV on the road it baffles me that Toyota cancelled that car. Not necessarily from a financial standpoint, I don’t know what their costs were. But from a per marketability standpoint there is a lot of market for a vehicle that size and shape. If no one else moves sooner Audi will scoop up those customers with their upcoming electric Q crossover.

      1. M3 Reserved - Niro/Bolt TBD says:

        Not at Audi prices it won’t. 🙁

        I agree, Bolt is just a little too small for our hauling purposes with dog. I’m hopeful for the Niro to make the mark though. Need 100+ miles for a good weekender activity and it may do the trick.

        Bolt does great for the compact urban folk and we would have taken it if we didn’t have the Golden Retriever. LOTs of passenger room. Hauled 5 with the tester with a 6’4″ person and didn’t have issues.

        M3 still in the race for our G37 replacement. If Tesla can improve on their low efficiencies despite favorable aerodynamics, but it’s a racer– I don’t ask our G37 using premium gas to get 35MPG. Nor should I ask Tesla have the M3 match the Bolt on efficiencies.

      2. 2EVsCO says:

        I should have been more specific and said small rear cargo area. Obviously the Bolt is not meant to be a mid sized SUV like the Rav4. I was impressed with passenger volume in the bolt. Rear headroom was so much better than a Model S.I guess I just wanted it to be bigger overall so I could justify getting one, but it just wouldn’t meet my needs day to day any better than the Rav4. replacing the Volt with a bolt is not in the cards as CCS is limited getting out of Colorado as of now. I also drive around rural areas for work consistently so volt is great in those scenarios.

        I agree 100% the Rav4 EV is so much better of a car than only 2500+ units says. It has its quirks (mostly charging schedule), but it is a sweet daily driver that is quick, efficient and big. I also got a used car tax credit on it so it was even more of a sweet of deal. It is too bad CO got rid of the used EV credit.

        1. (⌐■_■) Trollnonymous says:

          The infotainment of the Rav4 EV sucks large spherical objects of the male anatomy.

      3. Nix says:

        unlucky — yes, you have correctly identified one of the dirty secrets of the automotive world. A lot of these 5-door’s actually have much better headroom than much more expensive 4-door sedans in a car maker’s same model line.

        For example, the lowly VW Golf rear headroom is 38.1, while the much more expensive Audi A4 has rear headroom of just 37.5 inches! (2016 data according to Edmunds).

        If rear head is important to someone, 5 door hatches typically beat sedans.

  13. Boris says:

    I would rather have 210 miles instead of 240 miles range and have nicer interior. Not impressed with what was shown during M3 launch. Was at least hoping for a HUD, which is not gonna happen. Model S interior looks below average, I thought Elon realized that and hired the Porsche and Volvo guys to work on interiors, yet something tells me M3 will look very cheap on the inside, hope I am wrong however.

  14. BraveLilToaster says:

    Don’t be ridiculous. The Model 3 will of *course* have longer range than the Bolt.

    By the time that the 3 comes out, the Bolt *still* won’t be able to drive from LA to NY, while you’ll be able to take the M3 practically anywhere in America. I honestly don’t care if the range is 215 miles or 237, because the charging network is so much more superior that a comparison can’t be made.

    1. Spider-Dan says:

      The Bolt will, however, be able to drive to LAX, at which point you can get on a plane to JFK like the vast majority of LA -> NY travelers do.

      The only compelling reason I can think of to drive cross-country (instead of fly) is if you are moving… and in that instance, you’re going to want a moving truck/van, not a compact executive sedan.

    2. zzzzzzzzzz says:

      You should really check VW Electrify America settlement plan.
      There is draft plan with all details for California for 50+ 150-350kW 5 stall CCS/Chademo chargers within couple of years. But it is not just for California, it will have 200+ stations nationwide. That is just VW, others will be adding chargers too.


      1. Nix says:

        The Bolt can only charge at 80 kW max, so it won’t be able to take full advantage of those high power chargers.

        The Model 3 will also likely be able to charge at those VW chargers, along with charging at Superchargers at a much higher rate. We’ll see what adapters they will have by then…

        And Tesla has also announced higher power chargers, along with doubling the number of superchargers just in 2017 alone. You can’t compare current 2017 supercharger network to a future VW network, without taking into account Tesla’s future plans.

        1. zzzzzzzzzz says:

          One network may be better in some aspects, another in other aspects, but you will have highways with CCS/Chademo chargers for interstate travel by next year and it will be feasible, even if not as convenient as in refuelable car.
          80 (or 60) kW is not much, but original Model S 60 wasn’t able to take much more either, and only part of the time at certain state of charge. Newer Model S/X 60/75 is limited to some 94 kW and it is just theoretical peak, any sub-optimal temperature, or state of charge, or charger issues, and it drops down.
          Practical average is much lower. This would apply to Bolt too, though I would hope GM will improve charging rate next year with proliferation of higher power chargers.
          It is still pity we have network fragmentation and proprietary networks, unlike gas stations. Adapters are just clumsy bandaid and unlikely to be convenient or practical. Current Tesla Chademo adapter is limited to 50kW too.

          1. Nix says:

            It simply isn’t possible to extrapolate 2170 taper off of 18650 numbers. Nor is it possible to compare old cooling system packs with new cooling system packs (100D and later packs and Model 3) and pretend they are the same.

            1. zzzzzzzzzz says:

              >It simply isn’t possible to extrapolate 2170 taper off of 18650 numbers.

              2170 can only be worse for the same chemistry. As slightly bigger cell would mean slightly bigger temperature differences inside. Chemistry may change things to better however.

              > Nor is it possible to compare old cooling system packs with new cooling system packs (100D and later packs and Model 3) and pretend they are the same.

              Sure P100D is better than older Model S, and you may hope Model 3 will be better too. Most likely. Still, there are limits of carbon anode and it is not so easy to change keeping specific energy and longevity the same, otherwise every battery car would be charging 0% to 100% at peak charger power. It is a bit unrealistic to expect some battery technology breakthrough going in production right now without any research papers published many years before.

  15. unlucky says:

    It’s going to be hard for it to have much more than a Bolt if it only has 75kWh. Tesla’s induction motors just aren’t as efficient.

    The aerodynamics will certainly help at highway speeds. Teslas do better on the highway than other EVs and there isn’t any reason to think this will be different. But at 75kWh it shouldn’t be much higher on overall range than a Bolt.

    Note that if you are driving highway miles from Supercharger to Supercharger you don’t mind the lower city efficiency, since the higher highway efficiency is what is benefiting you.

    1. The Model 3 gets a totally new motor, based on what they learned from the S & X, remember. At present, we don’t know how different they are, unless you are in the Motor Dept at Tesla, or your name is Elon!

      1. unlucky says:

        Yes. It gets a new motor. As long as it is an AC induction motor it won’t be sufficiently more efficient to close the gap.

        The issue isn’t something they did wrong with their previous motor. The issue is in an AC induction motor you lose more energy due to rotor losses which permanent magnet motors don’t have.

        I’m not saying Tesla can’t use a permanent magnet motor. But they have said in the past they will not. And their company is named after the creator of the AC induction motor, not the creator of the permanent magnet motor!

        1. pete says:

          Both types of motors are 3 phase ac and the pm motor is just a little bit more deffecient but it has problems that the squirrel cage does not have.

        2. zzzzzzzzzz says:

          But they still signed permanent magnet supply deal with Chinese company :/
          Anyway, it is just some 2-4% difference for motor, some extra for extra weight. It adds up, but still it is not something that would change range by 15%.

    2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      unlucky said:

      “It’s going to be hard for it to have much more than a Bolt if it only has 75kWh. Tesla’s induction motors just aren’t as efficient. It’s going to be hard for it to have much more than a Bolt if it only has 75kWh. Tesla’s induction motors just aren’t as efficient.”

      Prepare to be surprised. The base Model 3, with a battery pack <60 kWh and probably close to 55 kWh, will almost certainly have an EPA range rating slightly better than the Bolt EV's range, and the M3's larger battery pack will of course have a significantly longer range than the base.

      That is of course just my prediction and not a fact, but I don't think I'm in much danger of being proven wrong here.

      As I said in an earlier post, I think you have an exaggerated idea of the energy efficiency difference between AC induction motors and AC permanent magnet motors.

      1. M3-reserved says:

        Tesla will need to push 4m/kwh to get Bolt levels at 60kwh. I don’t see any Tesla owner stating anywhere close to 4kwh.

        Most are in the 3-3.5. I routinely get 4-4.5 on my aero killing Spark mixed mileage at 70-75mph travel

        1. SparkEV says:

          Tesla weighs over 1000 lb more than Bolt, so it’s not surprising efficiency is not that great. But Tesla 3 should weigh less since it’ll be smaller, and highway efficiency could be better than Bolt due to better.

          However, there’s no way it will approach SparkEV level of efficiency. I was blown away the first time I drove constant 70 MPH for 70% of battery and found it to be 4.4 mi/kWh.

    3. realistic says:

      Unlucky, I’m about as robust a Tesla skeptic as you’ll find, although that’s really all about their business model and their manufacturing confusion. I think they execute the induction motor and motor control scheme extremely well and they already “close the gap” with PM.

      Undoubtedly the PM motor will have a higher peak efficiency and, with equivalent inverter efficiencies, should be less consumptive of energy for the same output. But Tesla expends quite a bit of material cost in rotor position and current sensing, and with modern processing power is able to operate the induction motor at very competitive efficiencies across the range of speeds, with an “area under the curve” as good as the peakier PM. They also do some clever things in asynchronous control strategies during acceleration that (probably) give their integrated inverter/motor package as good an overall eta as the PM. For the interested student their “torque sleep” method and what I understand to be some sporty methods of regeneration should be a topic of investigation.

      The second area of consideration is the battery. Tesla’s 60kWh is not the same as GMs 60kWh. I’m not picking one or the other as “better”. I’m just saying that Tesla wrings more out of their cells than GM does. Efficiency may mean less than we think as Tesla uses more of the available capacity without undue battery stress. (This is less an artifact of skill than corporate risk management.)

      Finally I think the great unknown for PRACTICAL and not EPA-rated range is the “situational awareness” of the car. Tesla claims to be going headlong into all the sensing capability for AP on the M3 as standard equipment. Even without any driver assist or autonomy, a car that’s aware of topology alone can, if allowed, make much more intelligent and economical “decisions” about how it extracts or returns energy to/from the storage system (i.e., battery). Without the car doing anything to significantly affect actual self-control of speed and acceleration, a setting that would allow the car to improve energy consumption with grade and location knowledge (and even more so with traffic information) would add 10% out of the box. That’s not EPA “allowable” advantage for now and so couldn’t be claimed, especially because the test cycle really can’t differentiate it. But it could definitely be implemented and be instantly recognized in the aficion EV community.

      We can all argue later about whether Tesla’s approach to cash incineration is an issue. In the meantime I don’t see anybody beating them for stretching the maximum distance out of a coulomb of leptons.

      1. unlucky says:

        You say you can’t see anyone beating Tesla. Except most cars beat them right now. Chevy beats them (on both cars). Nissan beats them. Hyundai smothers them.

        They make some of the most inefficient EVs there are. All their own cars, plus the RAV4 EV plus the Mercedes B-class, they all have poor efficiency.

        I’m not sue why people think they’re going to suddenly overcome, let alone make a bizarre statement which indicates they are already leading.

        As to wringing cells, I can only say for like capacity. No one has come out and said how much of the theoretical capacity GM even uses on the Bolt. So it’s hard to say what the current “wringing” gap is.

        I don’t see a real importance to situational awareness in a car with regen. It’d be great for predicting range, but I don’t see how it is going to save a lot of energy doing anything except slowing down the car. And customers don’t want that and if they would just lower the speed themselves.

        1. Bill Howland says:

          The big experts here all forget (or never knew), that rotor current heating problems and rotor current losses don’t exist for synchronous motors simply because they don’t have them.

          That said, the foremost efficiency advances going on right now are not going on in the automotive industry simply because it is a small percentage of motors manufactured world wide (although it is likely the biggest motor an average consumer would ever purchase). For the very large motor markets, companies like ABB are advancing the efficiency state-of-the-art, and no, i have no equity position in them.

        2. SparkEV says:

          All “Tesla cars” are much heavier than Bolt and SparkEV. Because EPA efficiency test involve lots of slowing down, heavier cars tend to be more penalized, and it’s not clear that less efficiency is only due to motor type.

        3. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

          unlucky repeated his anti-Tesla FUD:

          “You say you can’t see anyone beating Tesla. Except most cars beat them right now. Chevy beats them (on both cars). Nissan beats them. Hyundai smothers them.”

          As I already pointed out, the EPA range rating for the 2013 Nissan Leaf shows almost precisely the same miles per kWh rating as the Model S85, despite the S85 being a far heavier car with significantly better acceleration. So your statement is factually incorrect.

          And more generally, if those other cars you’re comparing the Models S and X to were as heavy as Tesla’s cars, and if they had a comparable 0-60 time, then you wouldn’t be trying to claim their energy efficiency is better. Given Tesla’s superior tech, the stats of those other cars would be noticeably worse.

          Tesla’s superior tech will become very clear when we get the official EPA ratings for the Model 3.

          1. zzzzzzzzzz says:

            Pu-pu writing while impaired:
            “As I already pointed out, the EPA range rating for the 2013 Nissan Leaf shows almost precisely the same miles per kWh rating as the Model S85”

            Do you really think people around you are brainwashed idiots and can’t look up EPA mpge or kwh/100 miles data on designated EPA & DOE site?

      2. Bill Howland says:

        Realistic, the power factor (PF) of their motors are poor at high speeds (and the screaming speeds the motors run at) exacerbating several problems. This is why they overheat – and ‘processing power’ has nothing to do with it. I know of no drive manufacturer that overdrives a motor commensurate with its current speed unless they have a special reason to do so… That is why Drives are specified for variable torque, constant torque, or constant horsepower use, and V/F curves are selectable/programable on all but the most old-fashioned drives.

      3. ffbj says:

        @realistic: I wanted to say good call on the nose job, as you saw that one coming.

    4. arne-nl says:

      There was recently an article posted here of a dyno test of a Tesla Model S, measuring power both at the battery and wheels. Off the top of my head, total drive train efficiency (including electronics) was > 80%. So there will not be much to win for a Bolt in that department. Certainly not to counteract the 25% larger capacity of the 75 kWh pack and the better aerodynamics of the M3

  16. Someone out there says:

    At an equal battery size I wouldn’t be surprised if the model 3 had longer range than the Bolt. However I expect that the base model 3 will have a smaller battery than the Bolt, probably around 50 kWh and therefore probably slightly shorter range.
    Top of the line 75 kWh will obviously have far longer range than the Bolt.

    1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      A 75 kWh upgraded battery pack, assuming that’s what Tesla actually uses*, points to a larger than 50 kWh base battery pack. The original offering for the Model S was 60 and 85 kWh, a difference of 25 kWh. The Model 3, being smaller, will very likely have a smaller difference between initial battery pack sizes. If the base back is 55 kWh and the larger pack is 75 kWh, this would seem to fit pretty well with Tesla’s previous offerings, and would be precisely what I predicted some months ago.

      *Elon gave a figure of 75 kWh as the upper limit of capacity possible for a M3 battery pack. That does appear to suggest the larger pack will be 75 kWh, but that’s not actually what Elon said. My guess is it will indeed be 75 kWh, but it’s possible the capacity will be less.

    2. Alaa says:

      The drag of the M3 is 0.21 and the Bolt is 0.32 So how come they will use the same energy to travel 1 mile? The 0.21 will need less energy.

  17. scotty franco says:

    300 miles matches what I always thought the extended range M3 would be, and satisfies my needs.

    I’ll be looking for max range battery, and 72 amp home charging. Hold the autopilot.

  18. ffbj says:

    Interesting that he paraphrases Jesus, giving ammunition to those that accuse him of have Messiah complex.

    1. Well, if you think about it, Elon has been in the Mountain (of obstacles) moving busines with SpaceX since 2002, and with Tesla since about 2006!

      1st Mountain was privately launching a Rocket, next was delivering supplies to the ISS, 3rd was Landing a 1st Stage back on Earth (and on drone ships), etc. Lot’s of Mountains moved there!

      With Tesla, he has been stealing the Lunch Money from the Bullies, taking the cream off their desert in sales acquisition from the premium segment, getting ready to do the same for the mud levels next!

      That is more Mountains moved than many a car start up before him!

      Faith Precedes The Miracle!

      1. ffbj says:

        There is something of the evangelist in Musk, and the heroes journey you allude too, of that there can be little doubt.

    2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      ffbj said:

      “Interesting that he paraphrases Jesus, giving ammunition to those that accuse him of have Messiah complex.”

      Well if you’re gonna go down that road, why stop only halfway? In the original quote*, “O ye of little faith”, Jesus was rebuking his own disciples for their lack of faith in him! Just as Musk was rebuking that tweet follower for his lack of “faith” that the M3’s range will exceed the Bolt EV’s.

      *Well, the “original” King James translation, anyway

    1. (⌐■_■) Trollnonymous says:

      That must have cost them a BIG FAT penny.

      Any place in the bay area, especially SF, cost a sh|tl0ad.

      Probably could’ve save a few-teen millions moving closer inland around Fairfield around Travis AFB.

      1. ffbj says:

        $9 million a year, or there abouts.
        I think they will burrow the tunnel between this site and Fremont.
        So they can test on an underground test-track, an the tunnel at the same time. For these tunnels will be restricted to only evs, due to less need for a more robust ventilation system.

        1. (⌐■_■) Trollnonymous says:

          Did you notice the Livermore location is a hop skip and jump to the Lathrop facility too?
          The other direction is a not so quick drive through bay area traffuk to the Freemont location.

          Looks like a pretty straight parts path.

          1. ffbj says:

            No, but it makes perfect sense that it would be.

  19. Alan says:

    If they are discontinuing the 60 kWh battery on the model S, what’s stopping them from using this size for the base of the model 3 and allowing people to “upgrade” to 75 kWh via the software ?

    In other words put a 75 kWh battery in all model 3’s and limit the base to 60 kWh.

    1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      Elon already said the M3 will have a base battery pack smaller than 60 kWh. Furthermore, Tesla has gone to extremes in reducing drag, even to the point of lowering the rear roofline to the point that Tesla had to give up a rear hatch in favor of a normal (or even smallish) sedan trunk opening.

      Engineering the M3 to use a smaller battery pack than the Bolt EV is in fact what we should expect (or at least what *I* expected), given Tesla’s need to reduce costs and therefore use a battery pack as small as possible, while still tweaking the car for what will almost certainly be (as Elon hinted in the Tweet quoted above) a slightly longer base range than the Bolt EV.

    2. (⌐■_■) Trollnonymous says:

      Those packs use the 18650 cells and the packs geometry is most likely too big.

      The “Model à trois” pack will be using the 21700 cells and I believe the pack for the “Model à trois” was built around the smaller dimensions of the car.

    3. Spider-Dan says:

      That is not a viable strategy for a mature product.

      Right now, Tesla can give you 75kWh of batteries for the price of 60kWh because they don’t have to care about profitability yet. But at some point they will, and at that point giving away an extra 15kWh of battery – almost double the battery of the Prius Prime! – would be a major cost drain.

      1. Nix says:

        Spider-Dan, you are correct. The Model S 60’s existed exclusively to capture Model 3 reservation holders who they were afraid they would lose to other car makers. They hoped to get back much of the money with people enabling the full capacity later, but it was never planned to be a long-term sustainable business plan.

  20. (⌐■_■) Trollnonymous says:

    I repeat….

    Dear Tesla.
    Please build a “Model à trois” that has a 63KWh pack with 200 mile range that can SC to full 200miles without “Taper”.

    I am willing to pay a little extra.


    1. zzzzzzzzzz says:


      Dear Tesla.
      Please build a “Model à trois” that has a 63KWh pack with 200 mile range that can SC to full 200miles without “Taper”.

      You letter is addressed to the wrong person :/ Both Honda and Toyota did it couple of years ago. Except that range is longer, charging is much faster, and cars are cheaper to lease now.
      (Ssh! Don’t tell anybody, true believers really hate them for that reason and will go amok when they will hear it.)

  21. PhilB says:

    Folks, don’t forget that the Chevy Bolt is more like a crossover style body whereas the Tesla Model 3 is a sedan style. This means Model 3 is lower, has less frontal profile and likely has a better drag coefficient than the Bolt. If all other things are equal, that should help the Model 3 get better highway range than the Bolt for a given size battery. That may prove to be a real advantage in marketing because Tesla may be able to have a smaller battery than Bolt (keeping their costs low) and yet still match or exceed the Bolt range on the highway where it counts. City range is less critical than highway range.

    1. (⌐■_■) Trollnonymous says:

      “City range is less critical than highway range”

      Dude, you need to drive in some of these California streets in SoCal, Bay Area and Sacramento.
      Highway stop and go average speed is around 27mph if you’re not stopped……..lol
      You’re lucky to ever reach and sustain 55mph for longer than a minute!

      1. Nix says:

        Well, if you are traveling at 20 miles an hour and you have 200 miles of city range, that is 10 hours of driving before having to recharge.

        Besides taxis or other professional drivers, the vast majority of typical people will make it home and charge overnight long before needing to recharge.

        On the other hand, on the highway you would be charging about every 2-3 hours at 65 mph with 200 miles of range. Typical drivers would be much more likely to hit that limitation than the 10 hour daily driving limit at 20 mph.

  22. Nix says:

    My completely out of thin-air guess is that the base model will have less range than the Bolt, and there will be a big battery option for more range than the Bolt.

    The base prices with just the battery option will follow the same ladder.

    1) Base TM3 with small battery, lowest range lowest price (MSRP before rebates, etc).

    2) Bolt – middle price, middle range.

    3) Big battery TM3 — biggest price, biggest range.

    I’m basing this on nothing factual. Just my opinion.

    1. Bacardi says:

      Everything is right but with your “price” you’re assuming MSRP…The is not available everywhere yet, however in CA it was reported right here that it’s easy to get $3000 off the Bolt EVs MSRP and was reported that there was one dealer offering $5200 off (I don’t believe it mentioned if that was off a loaded up or pure base model, though)…That is a dealership and not any GM incentives which have not yet been green lighted…The Volt for example have $3000 off in bonus tags this month and another $3000 off for a lease conquest incentive…Also that the T3 may only include the color black for free and will charge a destination charge, which is currently $1200 for the M/S and fees often increase with inflation…

      I live in a coastal city just outside of L.A., I can literally go down the street and get a $3000 off the price today without haggling…So Bolt EV’s MSRP + destination, $37495 + $750 near mandatory DCFC – $3000 dealer discount = $35245…The T3, most likely in black only will be $36200…With all that being said, I’d much rather own a Tesla…

      1. Nix says:

        Tesla announced that they were making significant changes to their delivery routine, cutting the time down to about 1/4th the Model S/X.


        Also, the higher volume of the Model 3 will reduce shipping costs and storage costs while waiting to ship. Currently a Model S or X has to wait for a full delivery truck going in the same direction, and the delivery truck has to make multiple stops. That costs Tesla more than loading up one truck to Detroit, and 1 truck to Seattle, and having them make one stop.

        I would be shocked if the Model 3 delivery fee stays at what it is for the S/X.

    2. unlucky says:

      I’d place the same bets. Although with the caveat that the base model won’t even exist for a while anyway. It’s easy to quote a lower price for a car you don’t intend to deliver until later when battery prices have dropped some. By doing this you basically get people to compare this year’s price for a given package to a later, lower price for your offering.

      Tesla took advantage of this with the S by only shipping high end models at first, upselling people and cancelling the 40kWh model before even shipping it. And GM certainly took advantage of it by marking out the price of the Bolt when they did. I fully expect Tesla to delay the base 3 until a point at which GM has no problem matching their price (cutting price on the Bolt). Although even if that happens I still expect the Model 3 to sell more than the Bolt, and not just because Tesla is gearing up to make more of them.

      1. Nix says:

        unlucky, prepare to be disappointed, because the evidence is against you.

        GM themselves says they will stay at their current LG price of $145/kWh until 2020 when prices begin to drop:


        On the other hand, Tesla is talking about $100/kWh before the end of the decade:


        And Tesla is in a much better position to make it happen. LG isn’t going to achieve the kind of volume cost reductions just doing 30K battery packs, compared to Tesla doing 500K battery packs by 2020, PLUS all of their industrial installs measured in gigs, PLUS their home solar powerwall units.


        Finally, GM can only significantly cut prices on the Bolt by getting LG to cut their contract price for the roughly 1 dozen major component sets that they provide. And LG isn’t crazy, they certainly didn’t go for a 1 year contract at $145/kWh. GM’s own docs imply that the only way they got that low price was to lock it in for 4 years. GM’s prices from LG likely already have price decreases from now until 2020 ALREADY baked into a multi-year contract.

        1. zzzzzzzzzz says:

          “Tesla is talking about $100/kWh before the end of the decade:”

          Their talk is $0.01/tonne. They are talking about Mars colonies too, and “Musk expects that the craft will be ferrying tourists into space by 2014”, and “Musk recently vowed that Tesla will offer a third-generation car for less than thirty thousand dollars by 2014”.
          Happy believing into the bright future!

          In reality they also have contract with fixed return for Panasonic, equipment in Nevada factory belongs to Panasonic, and Panasonic has right to stay there even if Tesla would go to restructuring. Panasonic doesn’t grow money on trees just like any other low-margin battery maker in the world and will not sell under cost, either to Tesla or to Toyota, it doesn’t matter much for Panasonic.

  23. Apkungen says:

    I think it will be as efficient as the ioniq electric or better. These are my guesses:
    55kWh battery = 243 miles
    75kwh battery = 330 miles

  24. Koenigsegg says:

    The Dolt should not even be in the same sentence as Model 3

  25. Mike says:

    The Model 3 has 8 battery Module s in It Floor (CAD Model launch). So when elon says 75 kwh max. Math is easy. 75/8= 9.375 so symmetrical 6 Module Base Version 56.25 kwh. Propably named 55. They will build always same Module (economy of scale). Won’t Bet on 7 Modules.

    1. SparkEV says:

      Could be 6, 7, 8 modules for 55, “65”, 75 options.

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