Tesla Model 3 Is Quite The Hair-Puller



Screen Shot 2016-03-07 at 9.11.44 AMHow can it be that with just 19 days before the Model 3 debut, we still know almost nothing about it? We’ve got Tesla hackers that can find a passing reference to a P100D buried in Model S neuro-transmitters, but nobody can get their mitts on an image of a car?

In light of the latest employment survey showing Tesla is among the most meaningful, but also most stressful, places to work, you’d think that somebody in some state of disgruntlement would leak something to the internet.


  1. The culture of fear is so gripping that nobody dares. Do you really want to wake up in the middle of the night to find Elon standing over your bed?
  2. There is no Model 3 in the flesh — just a few carefully-guarded images.
  3. Very few people have access to Model 3 information. Ninety-nine percent of the company might still be in the dark and will learn nothing before March 31, just like the rest of us.
  4. The countless “leaks” we’ve seen from other automakers over the years are really just deliberate and sanctioned buzz-builders. It’s actually not hard to guard such information.

So we’re left with a sock full of “everything we know about Model 3” articles, which merely rearrange the same old moldy crumbs that Tesla tossed us long ago. And the crumbs don’t even belong together. Consider: Model 3 won’t look like other cars, Elon said during a Reddit AMA. Sounds pretty radical. Ah, but a more adventurous version will come afterward. More adventurous than something that already doesn’t look like other cars? Alrighty then. Maybe that just means “more complex,” just as Model X is more complex than the S.

Model III won't look like other cars TeslaMondo

There’s going to be a crossover version. There’s going to be a Model “Y”. There’s going to be something with falcon doors. Do all three crumbs pertain to the same vehicle? Is this the aforementioned “more adventurous” version of Model 3? Is this considered a version of Model 3 due to a shared platform, even though it will be called “Y”?

This new platform is some 20 percent smaller than the S/X. Three-row seating probably can’t happen. So why use falcon doors for a smallish crossover with no third row? Wasn’t third-row access the primary rationale for the falcon doors? Perhaps we’ve got this all wrong.

Screen Shot 2016-03-07 at 10.04.13 AMEven the Gigafactory’s role in Model 3 is confusing. Musk once tweeted that a fully-operational Gig was essential for Model 3 production. But at the most recent conference call, he said: “It does not appear to be anywhere near the critical path for model 3.”

Can anyone help? Where’s Horshack? He’s gone, dammit. Where’s Mr. Kotter? Still wearing his poker face, dammit. Since this post is stuck in the 70s, let’s evoke Joni Mitchell. Along with clouds, love and life itself, we really don’t know Model 3. At all.

See also: What Model III Will Totally Look Like

*Editor’s Note: This and countless other Tesla-related posts appear on TeslaMondo. Check it out here.

Categories: Tesla


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39 Comments on "Tesla Model 3 Is Quite The Hair-Puller"

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March the 31st…. Elon at the white board with a marker….. “It’ll look something like this”…. no wonder it hasn’t leaked 🙂

If there is Nothing flowing in the pipeline., How can you have a leak??????

Coolant from the battery cooling system…

It leaks because the pack is designed to be swapped. =)

Reporter Tennile asked “do that to me one more time”, and Captain Musk said “I’m on my way”.

Hmm. Right group wrong song. Should be:

I think they are going to simplify to keep the cost in check this time . I don’t really think they have a choice if they want this plan to succeed. As far as I’m concerned as prospective buyer ,The simpler , the better. Tesla cars thus far to me.,are overly computerized and too electronically complicated…The more gadgets you have .., & the more things that can break… They should stick with the .. K I S S….. Motto….BUT OF COURSE THEY WANT TO SELL PARTS & REPAIR CARS LATER…Henry Ford once said.”I can give away every car I build for free & make all my profit on Parts Sales & repairs”

The Model T broke down so much it had a catch phrase and a written song about it.

Tesla has more than it’s share of growing pains as well…Did you read/see the video on Nyland’s report of all the “S” issues he’s had in such a short time frame? It is astonishing almost UNBELIEVABLE…I haven’t had a fraction of those issues in my 17.5yrs ownership of my MB C230K …

Sounds like you’ve struck gold with your ICE vehicle built by a car company that’s been around for 90 years. Tesla’s Model S was rolled out 4 whole years ago. I love folks who unrealistically believe new technologies should be 100% perfect in their first version..

Not really, it was a fairly New designed model in too, it’s 3rd model yr.production.the C Class started in 1995…Plus I stayed away from MB dealerships & that brought down any of my Maintenance/repair updates, costs, to half price or less in some cases. That is one thing I won’t be able to do when I get the Tesla 3..

Yeah Teslas are rolling junkyards. The warranty takes care of stuff and most people who buy $100K cars can afford repairs and just drive one of their many other cars while the Tesla is in the shop. But if the Model 3 isn’t significantly more reliable than the Model S then Tesla will end up with a bad reputation that will take a generation to overcome.

They really should forget about complex gimmicks like the Falcon doors and focus on quality and reliability.

All they need to do is beat the competition on reliability. The Model S for example beats Mercedes S class and BMW 5 series on reliability.

Not according to several reliability surveys. One study found Tesla to be rock bottom in reliability, way behind even Fiat-Chrysler.

The article says the Model 3 will not look like any other car and evcarnut says “keep it simple, no hi-tech gadgets”. I contend that an electric car that doesn’t look like any other car and that’s simple, with no hi-tech gadgets already exists. I own two of them. I paid less than $17,000 dollars for both combined (used-very low miles). But these qualities have made the Mitsubishi i-miev a poor seller. Sales are so poor because these cars are so quirky looking and so lo-tech. For me, their 62 mile rated range (actually 70-80 miles) makes them quite usable for the $$$$ spent on them. Plus their odd, quirky looks and scarcity makes them quite the attention getter.

Good things take time. I know enough from seeing the model S and X that I am going to order one with everything on it from Fast Charging to Auto Pilot.
We now have a FORD Focus EV and KIA SOUL EV that will hold us over until the model 3 is delivered. It just gets better with EVerything Tesla does. We also own Tesla stock.

Note that a fully operational gigafactory being essential for Model 3 and not being on the critical path are not contradictory statements.

I admit that didn’t make any sense until I looked up the meaning of “critical path”. The term applies only to the timeline; it’s not a synonym for “necessary precursor”.

“Since this post is stuck in the 70s, let’s evoke Joni Mitchell. Along with clouds, love and life itself, we really don’t know Model 3. At all.”

Ha. Tesla Mondo just gave away his age….he’s old, that’s good


sounds like small car, crossover, roadster, then after that hopefully they consider a truck and a off-road SUV.

I did see a lot of station wagons in Europe. Not to sure if Tesla will make one.

Quoting from the article:

“Even the Gigafactory’s role in Model 3 is confusing. Musk once tweeted that a fully-operational Gig was essential for Model 3 production. But at the most recent conference call, he said: ‘It does not appear to be anywhere near the critical path for model 3.'”

It sounds like our young TeslaMondo writer does not know what “critical path” means. It means the SINGLE PATH through a large, complex project with PARALLEL sub-tasks that ultimately determines the time that the project will take. Elon is saying that the Model 3 needs the GigaFactory, but the GigaFactory will be operational soon enough to not DELAY the Model 3 launch.


I interrupt the comments in the same way.
The Gigafactory will go through several stages of operation/evolution as Tesla continues to build it out. Off the cuff, here’s how I see the stages occurring.
1) Was battery cell manufacturing for powerwall units. This is already complete and Tesla is starting to ship powerwalls.
2) Is/will be manufacturing battery cells to increase supply for the Model S and X battery pack manufacturing line(s). Telsa is looking to almost double model S&X output in 2016. This may also correlate with the release of Model S&X 100kWh packs.
3) Will be battery cell and battery pack manufacturing lines, in the Gigafactory, to supply up to 100,000 Model 3 vehicles for the first 1 to 2 years. The timeframe will be ½ of 2017 and all of 2018.
4) Additional battery cell and battery pack manufacturing lines will be brought online to supply 200K to 300K Model 3 platform vehicles in the 2018 to 2019 timeframe.
5) Lastly, the Gigafactory buildout will complete. Battery cell and battery pack manufacturing will increase to supply 500,000 Model 3 platform vehicles in the 2020 timeframe.

“I interrupt the comments in the same way.”

Auto-correct error? My inner Grammar Nazi says that perhaps you also interpret them the same way. 🙂

Thanks for the catch. I would love edit functionality.

The Gigafactory isn’t producding any cells yet. It is assembling pack with cells from Japan for Powerwalks.

Unlike Apple who is releasing new products every year, and has to rev up their Chinese supply chain to go with each revision, Tesla’s model 3 is just in Tesla’s design studio and that’s it. It’s easy to keep a lid on it that way. Even when it’s revealed, being a more vertically integrated company will help Tesla keep a lid on the leaks.

InsideEVs’ Jay Cole said, in a fairly recent comment to another article, that it generally takes about four years to go from a clean sheet design to an automobile entering production. If Tesla really has even the most remote chance of getting the Model ≡ into production by the end of 2017, then they had better be a heck of a lot further along than just a few drawings or computer renders.

Tesla clearly keeps under-estimating the amount of time it will take them to develop a car, but I don’t think it’s realistic to believe that they haven’t at least made a clay model yet. In fact, they might well have some test mules. If they are using, for example, a BMW 3-series or an Audi A4 for the prototype’s car body, then nobody would pay any attention to it when driven on public roads.

now now kids it,s a suprise ,be good and maybe uncle musk will tell you a bit of a story!

If Uncle musk gets it Half *ssed right I’ll give him some business .once uncle musk proves himself. Otherwise uncle Ghosn may get it instead…the best product wins! Cuz ,I don’t have any commitment or obligation to neither Tesla or Nissan till they prove themselves. Forget i3 I saw one today it looks one big chunk of cheap plastic with no range. N0t Impressed!

About that list of plausible explanations as to why we have not yet had leaks…

People sell insider information when they do not care. Like most employees in most companies.

But Tesla is a bit different:
* People apparently do care
* Everything Tesla does, it does by itself. And thus they can control tightly who know what.

Apple would be good example. As long as they design new gadget and thus use their own workforce, they can keep secrets.

As soon as they mass produce things… Some Chinese less-then-well-paid worker will spill the beans.

Tesla WONT mass produce the car until 2017. So even construction crews that will actually build assembly lines may not yet know what and when 😉

It will be just like the model X. News will come out about retooling the factory, production ramp up at the Gigafactory, maybe even a hiring spree followed by a tesla countdown clock and the same type of reveal event as the S and X. A lot of guys own stock and get a bit upset because their other interest is in their stock price. 2017 sounds about right.

I still think model Y will be a new Roadster-like car and that’s why it will have Falcon wing doors. it’s so low you will want the Falcon wing access.

That makes sense.

+1 For the “Welcome Back Kotter” reference.

They’ve already said that most designers and engineers are working on the Model 3 now. It makes sense, the Model X is essentially finished apart from ongoing updates and enhancements so what would everyone be doing?

I am usually not a conspiracy theory type of guy…

But with so little revealed, do you think there isn’t anything ready to reveal?

Maybe Elon Musk (who I like very much) chose the April 1st (April fool’s day) to open the online reservation for a reason.

Maybe it is a big joke after all… =)

I hope that I am drinking too much stuff that RexxSee has been drinking. LOL.

It may very well be, that the Model 3 is currently being tested, but with the bodies of BMW 3 Series, and A4’s. That would be a brilliant plain sight deception. Brilliant like Model S, and X.

It is unlikely anybody would see Model 3. They have their own test tracks for testing cars in both their manufacturing plants in America and Netherlands. In addition they have built stress test facilities for cars in house… something companies cant do with ICE cars because of exhaust issues.