Here’s Perhaps The World’s Most Comprehensive Tesla Model 3 Review


Tesla Model 3 – Four Day Test Drive Review

On my last trip to the Bay area, I was lucky enough to score a rental of a brand new Tesla Model 3 through Turo, the “Air BNB” of personal owner car sharing. Over a four day, 312 mile rental, I had the opportunity to put the Model 3 through its paces traversing the highways and byways of Silicon Valley. This review continues my first blogpost of the Model 3: Tesla Model 3 – First Look Inside & Out

Tesla Model 3 – Image Via Jeff Cohen

*This Model 3 review is authored by Jeff Cohen, Founder, Atlanta Electric Vehicle Development Coalition and Georgia EVentures, LLC

The Preliminaries – Access and Controls

Card Key Access and Mastering Model 3 Door Handles

I picked up the Model 3 at the owner’s home around 7:00 PM. The owner came out to give me the ‘hotel room style’ card key which provides ‘guest’ access to the Model 3 [Owners gain access through the Tesla App] to start my 4-day rental. To unlock the Model 3, you hold the card against the driver’s side B pillar and the mirrors unfold and the side-markers blink orange. After two days in the Model 3, I relaized that I needed to tap the card against the B pillar to both lock and unlock the vehicle. While there is a setting for auto lock/unlock on the control screen, that feature to my knowledge, was not associated with the card key.

Once inside you press the brake pedal and the Model 3 powers up like her sisters Model S and Model X. BUT if you wait too long to press the brake, you get this message on the controls screen and need to tap the card key against the center of the console below the cup holders. The card key feature is a bit of a negative and most owners will not need it but for guest access it’s a nuisance.

Door Handles – Ergonmically Challenging

While sleek and cool to look at, the Model 3 door handles are not very practical nor easy to use. Once you unlock the car, you push on the right part of the handle with your thumb to release the front part of the handle to open the door. I pinched my finger on more than one occassion using them. Not intuitive and unnecessarily complicated to operate. Self-presenting door handles on the Model S/X are neat. Nothing to see here folks.

The Controls Screen – Easy to Use after a Period of Adaptation

Whether you are a Tesla Model S/X owner or a Tesla newbie, the controls screen takes a bit of time behind the wheel to get used to using. Driving at night and in the Bay area rain made the first drive very challenging as I searched through the Controls Icons and screens to set the mirrors (that took about 4 drives to get right), climate controls, lighting and discover the very cool central heating/cooling vent.

Tesla Model 3 – Image Via Jeff Cohen

Per the pic above, the driving status of the Model 3 is on the left, the controls across the bottom of the screen and the navigation to the right. The most used icon is the first one to the left – short cut to driver settings. AutoPilot appears next to the speedometer and you set the speed by pressing + and – icons on the screen – a little unnerving trying to keep your eyes on the road and adjust the Auto Pilot controls (more on AP 2.5 below). Maps are clear but unlike Model S and X, the turn by turn directions are at the far right of the screen, which does not tilt toward the driver – so reading those can be a bit challenging.

So what is it like to drive the Model 3 ‘ FUN!

Tesla Model 3 – Image Via Jeff Cohen

Where the Tesla Model 3 absolutely shines is the way it drives. Going up against the BMW 3-Series, this car is just a blast to drive. The Model 3 is a rocketship on acceleration and passing speeds (something like 5 seconds from 40-70 mph). It corners incredibly well – and I put it to the test on many light rain covered entrance ramps. It holds the road with its low center of gravity. The optional 19′ Continentals provided a ton of grip and excellent road control, the optional wheel pictured above looks fits the Model 3 better than the standard Aero 18s in my opinion.

Downside: ride quality is in line with compact sport sedans: rough. Buyer Beware: you will feel every bump, pavement groove and rough pavement quality. The Model 3 does not ride like the Model S or Model X (but closer to non-air suspension Teslas). From what I have read on the Tesla forums, the issue is the same with the 18’s. This is an issue of chassis/suspension set up not tires. For those planning long road trips, and you are used to your Model S or X, you just need to be aware of the significant difference in ride quality. It is really my only negative about the Model 3 as a long-distance road car.

Tesla Model 3 – Image Via Jeff Cohen

The Model 3 is very easy to manuever on city streets and tight parking areas. This is a real advantage vs. Model S and X which are very large vehicles. Low steering effort for city driving and sport setting for highways gave me the best of both worlds. Turning radius is very tight and the risk of rim rash in the Model 3 is very low.

AutoPilot 2.5: Identical to AP1.

As shown in this one minute video, AP2.5 works extremely well. No issues with wobbling lanes. Lane change worked identically to my 2015 Model S AP1. I do miss the speed adjusment lever on the steering wheel stalk – which is now handled by pressing + and – icons on the control screen. Pressing the brake is the best way to disable AP2.5 as there is no ‘kill switch’ like in Model S and Model X. I used AP2.5 in stop and go traffic on 880 driving up the East Bay with no issues at all. Felt just like the Georgia 400 in my AP1.

Tesla Model 3 – Image Via Jeff Cohen

Fit Finish and Build Quality: Very Good!

Tesla Model 3 – Image Via Jeff Cohen

This is an early build Model 3 and I found just one flaw: wind noise at the A-pillar at highway speeds. The Model 3 fit, finish and build quality is excellent. Door panels, hood, and trunk gaps are minimal. Interior material quality and fit is very good. I did notice that the black premium interior seats tend to scuff a bit when you put light objects on then so you may want to get the seat surfaces treated.

Exterior fit and finish was very good.

Panel fit was excellent (and after my Fremont factory tour on this trip, I was reminded just how many steel and aluminum panels make up the Model 3). Doors take a little extra effort to close but the seals are tight. The trunk does close with the more typical sound of a midsized sedan: the steel deck lid makes a resounding thunk.

Trunk & Frunk

Tesla Model 3 – Image Via Jeff Cohen

A Tesla hallmark: using space wisely for luggage. As I reported in my November post, the trunk is very large with a high ceiling, low deck and the lower storage compartment. Tesla provides all of the requisite charging cords (110/240V) and L2 adaptor in a nicely trimmed bag (nicer than my Model S). This was the first time I got to see the Frunk, which is useable for small overnight bags and groceries (throw back to the Beetles and Corvairs of the 1960s).


Tesla gets very high marks for its interior quality (note Premium interior in this Model 3). The front seats are very comfortable and well bolstered. Seating controls are on the seat frames as expected. The rear seating is fine for 2 adults on short trips (an hour or less) and three adults only to go to lunch.

Door panels are beautifully trimmed and this Model 3 got the Alcatara headliner no longer being offered. One interesting feature: two ways to open the doors: an electric button on the top of the arm reset or a latch behind the window switch gear.

The center console is the big story with multiple storage compartments and a neat way to dock your iPhone (outside the protective case though), which you may want to do since my phone fell into the larger compartment upon hard braking. I had to pull off the road to look for my phone. One niggle – the magnetic on the lid is really fussy and needs undefined by precise pressure to latch it to the console. That could use some attention.

Charging Up the Model 3

Tesla Model 3 – Image Via Jeff Cohen

Model 3 charging is pretty simple: press the battery icon on the Control Screen, set the charge level, open the port and plug in the Tesla charger cord or adaptor/standard J1772 cord. The left quarter mounted chargeport is a bit light weight, so take care when opening and closing it. You can see on the screen the Paid Supercharging cost of $10.80. Of that total, I paid $11.40 for 237 miles of range at the Fremont Supercharger (ironically going on a Tesla Factory tour while driving a Model 3) or $.048 /mile.

On public chargers, I paid $10.46 for 42kWh ($.25/kWh) providing 174 miles of range (42 kWh/75 kWh) or $.06/mile. Driving 12,000 miles/year on the Long Range battery at $.05/mile is $600.00 or about $50.00/month vs. $132.50/month if gasoline powered (600 gallons at $2.65/gallon/12 months). Even with paid public charging in high cost States like California (New York, Massachusetts), the Model 3 will save owners $1,000 a year in ‘fuel’ costs. The Monroney (Window Sticker) shows an anuual fuel cost of $500.00.

Tesla Model 3 – Image Via Jeff Cohen

What’s the Bottom Line on the Tesla Model 3?

So what does this amazing new compact sport sedan cost out the Factory door: $56,500.00 before taxes and registration fees. Right now Tesla has only opened up the top of the line features: Long Range Battery ($9000), and Premium Interior ($5000) are fixed choices. AutoPilot ($3000), color choice (black was no cost extra color) and wheels ($1500 for 19s) are extra.

Is the Tesla Model 3 worth the money?

Yes – If you want a high performance sport sedan that is the perfect everyday driver for around town, short business trips and weekend errands. What you will save in long-term maintenance costs will more than make up for the upfront price premium vs. comparably equipped 3-Series BMWs and C/E- Class Mercedes competitors.

No – If you you take frequent long-distance road trips, and need to transport your family members (especially 3 children) and haul their gear. You may find the Model S or Model X better suits your driving needs.

Own a Model S or X already? My advice: keep it and add the Model 3 to your family!

*Special thanks to the 


And to Jeff Cohen for allowing us to share this comprehensive Tesla Model 3 review with our readers.

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87 Comments on "Here’s Perhaps The World’s Most Comprehensive Tesla Model 3 Review"

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Musk’s efforts to tamp down enthusiasm for this car are shot now. Time to update the S as soon as the 18650 contract is done.

True. With Model 3 sporting the car of the decade moniker it’s looking simply like a statement of fact.
The Model S, is like a luxury version progenitor, which though it still has some nice features unavailable on the Model 3, it’s looking a bit long in the tooth. Especially the browser, which they plan to update. The full refresh probably won’t come till late in the year.

If the Model 3 is car of the decade, the Bolt must be car of the century! Based off all the awards the Bolt won that the Model 3 did not. 🙂

Sure, you can call it the car the century.
The 20th.

nice! you just received the POST OF THE WEEK award.

More like the post of the year award.

Only the people in mental hospital would compare Chevy Bolt with Tesla Model 3.

It would match the giant forehead on the bolt

Or people who want a hatchback. Or maybe they want to buy a long range EV but don’t have $60K to drop on it. Or perhaps they just want an EV now and not next year.

Only one of the two companies spends significantly on marketing. Follow the money.

First, what would that have to do with anything?
Second, go trace the money on the marketing done for the Bolt by GM. We’re all waiting to read your findings.

There are 2 way you can get awards…by making a compelling product or by paying to get awards. Ever wondered why they keep getting that JD?

What would that have to do with anything?

Well, for one thing, a lot of those “awards” that MadBro is bragging about, for the Bolt EV, are fake awards that are only given to those auto makers who bribe pay fees to the magazine or organization who gives out the “award”. First there’s a fee to be considered, and then an even bigger fee for the one chosen as the “winner” to be able to mention the award in its advertising.

Tesla does not participate in such fake award schemes.

More info here: “Can You Trust Those Awards You See In Auto Ads?”

@floydboy, “Musk’s efforts to tamp down enthusiasm for this car are shot now.”

For enthusiastic drivers there is nothing better than smaller cars. Model s is too big for canyon driving, Model 3 is better and the next Tesla roadster is better still.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

Ohhh, that’s plenty space in the frunk and trunk for my 4 10″ subwoofer (2 trunk, 2 frunk).

I sure hope you don’t live in San Jose. I don’t want to hear your noise in my car, house, office. I hate noise.

I am good with most of the Model 3, but I would certainly have to be convinced that the near total lack of hard switches is a good thing. Especially in places where it is cold enough to require gloves in the winter time.

Will someone make warm gloves with touch material on the fingertip(s)?

They’re commonly available. I have several pairs.

I have a pair that claims to be “touch compatible”, but I have ones that are not, and they still work. I think you just have to press a bit harder. They are based on body capacitance, not actual touch (that would be resistive).

@NeilBlanchard, “I would certainly have to be convinced that the near total lack of hard switches is a good thing.”

How often are you playing with buttons, switches … in a car while driving ? Changing fan speed every minute ? Changing radio station every second ? Adjust side view mirrors every 100 feet ?

Why not use the voice command?

“Door Handles – Ergonmically Challenging” – this one clearly shows that the reviewer has no idea why the car has those “challenging” handles. They are not just there to be “sleek and cool to look at”! There is a very good reason for them!

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

“There is a very good reason for them!”

…..and if he doesn’t know, wouldn’t it be a good idea to tell them why???????

I did not mention it intentionally. This is the perfect troll-trap 😀

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous


Whats you point? Even if it improves aerodynamics it doesn’t change that fact that its ergonomically challenging

The author is right. The handles are a problem.

To those that need there to be a problem.

eltosho said:

“…the reviewer has no idea why the car has those ‘challenging’ handles.”

That’s clearly fallacious… in addition to being arrogant and obnoxious. Just because the reviewer didn’t mention that the handles are flush mounted to enhance streamlining doesn’t mean he’s unaware of the fact.

But streamlining is no excuse for making door handles that pinch fingers. That’s just poor design, period.

“I did not mention it intentionally. This is the perfect troll-trap 😀 ”

Looks like you got caught in your own trap, troll. Instead of giving the reviewer credit or praise for taking the time and effort to write such an extensive and thorough review, you sit at your keyboard and snipe that he didn’t mention the streamlining purpose of flush door handles.

“Those who can, do. Those who can’t, teach. Those who can’t even teach… become critics.”

Not the “most comprehensive” review but good. I agree with the summary but would argue still a very good family car even for longer road trips. We did a very comprehensive review in October last and you can watch on our youtube Model 3 Owners Club.

Nice review, but it’s clear the author hasn’t been paying attention if they think this is the “world’s most comprehensive Model 3 review”. It’s not even close to that.

Also there are several incorrect facts such as:
-Autopilot costs $5k not $3k.
-The manual door releases are for *emergency use only* and the display will tell you this if you try to use them.

As for the subjective, I’d take issue with the author’s claim it’s only good for “short” business trips. Why the limitation? Anything that takes more than a day should likely be by plane anyway in the interests of time, but the LR version of the Model 3 especially can easily handle any day trip you throw at it.

“This is an issue of chassis/suspension set up not tires.” When I see these low-profile tires, I don’t think!

235/40/19 vs. 245/35/21 would be the comparison between large Model 3 and Model S wheels. I see that, and think 235mm is a lot of rubber for a car that weighs a full ~800lbs less. The higher the sidewall, the better, for softness. Here, since they’re both really close in profile, I’d suggest its the nominal width reduction relative to so much less weight, that’s helping firm impressions.

If you change nothing, but to lower weight or wider tires (~same width), you get a rougher ride. The air vs. coil prognosticating isn’t painting the whole picture, IMO.

Low profile tires lock up my mind, as well.

So do women with large…. feet as well. Call it an ethnic weakness.

Dr. Miguelito Loveless

10/10 for review.

0/10 for misusing “ironically”

“(ironically going on a Tesla Factory tour while driving a Model 3)”

This was not irony. It was arguably a coincidence, but only if you had not intended to do so. To be arguably ironic, you would have needed to tour an internal combustion engine plant, not a Tesla plant.

Remember, being hit by a fire truck on the way to a fire is a coincidence. A fire truck on fire is ironic.

Hmmm, well, opinions can and do differ on that point. On the one hand, I certainly see your point: That driving a Tesla Model 3 to visit the Tesla factory is entirely appropriate, and thus the opposite of ironic. On the other hand, I can certainly see at least one reason why the writer might think it’s ironic to drive a Model 3 (which he paid a lot of money to be able to test drive) to the Tesla factory to go on a Tesla factory tour. It’s a case of “preaching to the choir”. One can argue over whether or not that’s ironic, but it’s at least absurdly superfluous to attempt to convert them; the choir members are not merely already converted, they are clearly already committed to the cause! If the purpose of Tesla giving factory tours is to promote sales of its cars, then that purpose is wasted on this writer; arguably wasted to the point of absurdity, and perhaps irony. The writer has already “put his money where his mouth is” in showing a lot of interest in buying the car. Personally, I feel this same sense of irony every time I see a commercial for… Read more »

Meanwhile…Musk to stay on as CEO at Tesla for another decade, and compensation only if market capitalization reaches $100 Billion, and hits operational numbers, and at $50 increments Billion thereafter. The big prize is if they hit $650 Billion he gets 1% of the company.
There are also other strings attached like he can’t sell any of his stock for 5 years.

And compensation was de-linked from production. A smart idea, since Elon always whiffs on production goals and deadlines. Maybe this means he’ll make fewer ridiculous claims moving forward.

No, that’s included in operational numbers.

But will YOU?!

Musk has been cashing in his stock all along the way.

@Steve, no he didn’t. He sold some grants to pay tax, his daily expenses are from the loans he has using his holding of approximately 20% of Tesla.

@ffbj, he would get 1% for every milestone. If Tesla market cap is at or above $650 billion he would get 12%.

So far only fanboy reviews, we need some real review.

There has been non fanboys attempting to review it but by the time they finish they become fanboys. Maybe you should try it…

Darn it! I had a drink in my mouth! LMAO! I’ll clean this up.

😆 😆 😆

Dude, you just won the internet for today!

Car of yesterday
Dead on Arrival (DOA)
No national charging network.
Ugly little car on a short bungi chord. Classic GM.
Even the Koreans could have done better.

So the fact the Bolt outsold the Model X last year should be an embarrassment for Tesla, no?

No, it’s a large SUV that starts at 80 grand. Rolls Royce Wraiths, on the other hand, yes.

No, what’s embarrassing — for you — is that you seem to think the Bolt EV outsold the 46,535 Tesla Model X’s sold last year (source below).

Compared to the ~30,000 that GM produced — that’s produced, not sold — the Model X outsold the Bolt EV by better than 50%, despite having an average sale price nearly three times as high as the Bolt EV. (Or maybe that should be “fully” rather than “nearly”; I’m not sure.)

Thanks for highlighting the subject of GM’s failure to produce enough Bolt EVs to meet demand, MadBro.


@bro1999, Toyota Corolla outsold BMW 3 series forever, should BMW fold their stores ?

Bro – the Tesla Model X out sold the GM Bolt in Worldwide sales.

Scoot, this is your opinion. To each his own. In a two or three car household you dont need a 100 million dollar nationwide charging network to support your travels. Sure its nice to have a car like the Tesla to drive across country, but this isnt the preferred method of travel anyhow.
As for calling the Bolt DOA and car of yesterday, i would think you dont listen to facts. This car has won tons of awards, has sold 10’s of 1000’s of copies and compares vary well to any electric car on the market. (See Motor Trend comparo.)
It excells at some things, and lacks in others, just like any OTHER CAR ON THE MARKET! GROW the funk up and be honest with yourself and others.
Its a good $37k Ev, just like the $56k Model 3 is. If you dont believe me, i invite you to eat an orange just as you would an apple and get back to me

Scoot, are you there?

Ozz said: “Scoot, this is your opinion.” You mean “Scott”. And you seem to want to deny Scott the right to his own opinion. “This car has won tons of awards…” And likely at least some of those actually are real awards which GM didn’t have to pay for. But certainly not all. However, don’t try to compare that to the very large number of the real awards which the Tesla Model S has won — none of which Tesla paid for — or all the awards the Model 3 is going to win over the next year. Don’t try, because that would just embarrass GM fanboys. “…compares vary well to any electric car on the market. (See Motor Trend comparo.)” Well see, that’s what we in the real world call an “opinion”, not a fact. That’s what you seem to think Scott doesn’t have a right to, so why are you entitled to one? BTW — You meant “very”, not “vary”. “It excells at some things…” You meant “excels”. “If you dont believe me…” You meant “don’t”, not “dont”. “i invite you…” You meant “I”, not “i”. If you want people to be persuaded by your comments, if you… Read more »

On the other hand, there was no reason for Scott to bring up the Bolt in this thread. It just incites pointless arguing.

It’s not like Tesla is not mentioned on pretty much all the threads…

Sorry Pushi, I was composing this on a new android phone that I am not familiar with. Also, I was extremely tired at the time and didn’t really want to go back and proofread my comments. After I hit send I noticed the very word you commented on and wished I could Have edited my comment. But this system doesn’t allow that. But thanks for taking the time to criticize me. How helpful! ?

As for charging phones with cases: if you have an Otterbox or something like that, you need to remove it (or modify the connector), but most thin cases work fine with the docks.

Agreed. I don’t use stock cases, and probably never will.

“Pressing the brake is the best way to disable AP2.5 as there is no ‘kill switch’ like in Model S and Model X.” You can disengage the autopilot by pushing up once on the right steering wheel stalk. “The Model 3 does not ride like the Model S or Model X (but closer to non-air suspension Teslas). From what I have read on the Tesla forums, the issue is the same with the 18’s.” We have the 18″ aero wheels and while our Model 3 isn’t quite as smooth as our Model S 85 with air suspension, I don’t find the ride annoying at all. It’s much less bouncy then our 2014 BMW i3 BEV. I haven’t done a side-by-side comparison since we only have one Model 3, but I bet the 18″ wheels give a less jarring ride. “While sleek and cool to look at, the Model 3 door handles are not very practical nor easy to use. Once you unlock the car, you push on the right part of the handle with your thumb to release the front part of the handle to open the door.” After nearly two weeks with our Model 3, I don’t find the… Read more »

@wraithnot,”We have the 18″ aero wheels”, will you look at the tire size ? Is it 235/45-18 or 235/50-18 ?

My wife has the car right now, but I believe the tires are Michelin primacy mxm4 235/45R18 98W

Wraithnot I’m very curious how you like the M3 vs the i3, pros and cons on both sides.

I am near the end of my 3 year i3 lease and a day0 M3 res holder anxiously awaiting my invite.

How’s the adjustment been, especially the lack of physical buttons / etc?

Thanks for the review, one of the best I have seen.

Not sure why the conclusion was that Model S is a better long distance car. Except for the high end S’s, the M3 is up there in range.

I have been in both an MS and M3, and the MS has more room for sure, but that is a subjective thing. You can get a van, and it has lots of room, and I know a lot of people (especially Americans) who like that for travel. Me, my first long trips were in a Porsche 911 and I always liked having a snug car to travel in.

I was amused to see someone posting, about his brand new Tesla Model 3, that he had immediately listed it on Turo for ride sharing.

So much for Tesla’s assertion that nobody can use any Tesla car with any ride-sharing service except Tesla’s own! …which it hasn’t even started up yet. I found it bizarre that Tesla would try to claim that its cars can’t be used on any non-Tesla ride-sharing service. This couldn’t possibly be enforced, so why would they even try?

I suppose Tesla could void the warranty, or at least in some cases, refuse to fix a car under warranty by claiming that it was subject to excessive wear-and-tear by using it for ride-sharing. If Tesla does try that, then I suppose that’s something that will have to be settled by lawyers and quite possibly the courts.

I don’t think they ever said that. All i remember seeing was the restriction on free charging if the cars are involved in commercial activities…such as Turo.

Quoting from the actual Tesla Model 3 New Vehicle Limited Warranty:

Warranty Limitations

This New Vehicle Limited Warranty does not cover any vehicle damage or malfunction directly or indirectly caused by, due to or resulting from normal wear or deterioration, abuse, misuse, negligence, accident, improper maintenance, operation, storage or transport, including, but not limited to, any of the following:


Driving for business or commercial purposes, including, but not limited to, taxi, livery, or ride-sharing purposes, rental services, delivery services, law enforcement or emergency services;

[emphasis added]

* * * * *

Insurance rates for using your car “for commercial purposes” will be higher, too.

Is this even legal?! Why should Tesla care how the cars are used? They should cover certain number of miles (40k was it?) and that’s it.
Very surprised to see this!

Some comments on the article: “…the Model 3 door handles are not very practical nor easy to use. Once you unlock the car, you push on the right part of the handle with your thumb to release the front part of the handle to open the door. I pinched my finger on more than one occassion using them. Not intuitive and unnecessarily complicated to operate.” Based on this and other comments, it looks like Tesla once again unnecessarily violated the KISS principle (Keep It Simple, Stupid) with its door handles. I would consider pinching fingers to be completely unacceptable, and it’s shocking that Tesla’s design team failed on something that quite literally every other auto maker does on a routine basis. That might not rise to the level of being an important factor in most people’s buying decision, but speaking as a Tesla fan, it’s quite troubling to see that Tesla would put into production a door handle which will pinch your finger if you’re not careful! “The Controls Screen – Easy to Use after a Period of Adaptation “Whether you are a Tesla Model S/X owner or a Tesla newbie, the controls screen takes a bit of time behind… Read more »

Turning radius can be objectively measured. Has anyone done this?

Mr. Google says the turning radius is 19.4′ for the Model 3. Compare to 18.5′ for the Model S.

Thus, there is some discussion/argument over why the Model 3 has a longer turning radius than the Model S. This is something the Tesla Hater cultists have latched onto and tried to make into an “issue”.

@Pushmi-Pullyu ,”Seems like a fair assessment. With its smaller size and perhaps overly firm ride, plus the lack of free Supercharging, it does seem the Tesla Model 3 is best suited for shorter trips, and not long “road trips”.”

“Lack of free Supercharging” therefore Model 3 is best suited for shorter trips ? Can it be said for ICEV ? Lack of free refilling at gas stations therefore this or that ICEV is best suited for shorter trips ?

Cost per kWh at Supercharger in California is 20 cents about 1/2 the cost of premium gasoline per mile for similar cars such as BMW 330i, Mercedes Benz C300. 1/2 the refueling(charging) cost of similar cars is too much to pay ?

You are of course entitled to your opinion, but I’ve already given mine. I invite you to re-read the last paragraph of the post you’re responding to.

Autopilot cruise settings require taking your eyes off the road.

Wiper speed settings require taking your eyes off the road.

Door handles pinch your hands.

But we’re supposed to get with the times and accept these innovations as ‘progress’.


Please do tell us, Murrysville, just which EV is, in your inestimable opinion, perfect and completely free from flaws? /snark

* * * * *

Reading the remarks from “Murrysville” reminded me of a stanza from a Rogers & Hammerstein musical:

So suppose a dame ain’t bright
Or completely free from flaws
Or as faithful as a bird-dog
Or as kind as Santa Claus
It’s a waste of time to worry over
Things that they have not
Be thankful for
The things they’ve got!

— “South Pacific” (1949)

From the moment I read the initial launch day review from Motor Trend I suspected RIDE QUALITY might be the Achilles heal of the Model 3. Since that time, virtually every review has mentioned it and there are threads on it over on TMC. People compare it to a BMW 3 series, but forget to mention a BMW 3 series has THREE suspension OPTIONS: base, sport and adaptive. The latter being the most sophisticated as it offers configurable settings and adapts to differing road conditions. Here – we have suspension setup. The bizarre thing is that with the low center of gravity in the Model 3, it simply wasn’t necessary to put extra firm dampers in to get good handling. People get all worked up about things like the screen placement, etc. and overlook that the RIDE is something you will feel/experience every second you are moving in the car. Short test drives (as the author points out) aren’t really long enough to flush this out, but if you KNOW what to look out for going in, you can be sure to pay specific attention to it. Heck, I even LOOK for bad roads on test drives or ask sales… Read more »

Current production Model 3’s have coil spring suspension, which isn’t adjustable for firmness, is that right?

At least, the last sentence of the Electrek article linked below implies that coil springs are what you get with current production TM3’s.

I’m not in the market for a Model 3, but if I was, I’d certainly wait for the air suspension option, on the theory that you could adjust that for a softer ride.

Current model 3s have coil springs and traditional dampers. The air suspension on the Model S and X has air springs, BUT the dampers are still traditional dampers. They are not adjustable for firmness and they do not automatically adapt to different road surfaces. The air suspension does allow the HEIGHT to be adjusted (and can use GPS coordinates to remember that adjustment), but that’s all.

An air suspension equipped car is NOT automatically softer riding than a coil suspension equipped car. It really comes back to the dampers. On the Model S, Tesla does seem to have paired the air “springs” (really bladders) with a bit “softer” traditional damper, and May do the same with the 3…TBD.

The door handles are super easy to use, I don’t get why anyone would consider them to be “challenging” in anyway. You would only need to use them once and you’ll be fine afterwards. No offense, and I do respect your opinion, but I bet I could train my dog to use them!

Yeah. I opened the door on the display model a few times the other night and didn’t have any problems. Maybe it’s my delicate ladylike fingers…

It will be interesting to see what the difference in ride quality will be between the long range version with 19″ wheels, and the lighter standard range version with 18″ wheels.

Agreed. If they keep the same damper setup (different springs) , it could actually be worse or they might decide the base car should just be less sporty.

It’s not $0.48/mi, but $0.048/mi. Fix your math.

Can someone tell me the turning radius of the Model 3 (with specific numbers, not in general terms)? I cannot find it anywhere. It may not be so important in the US but it is a big factor in many other countries, to negotiate tight U-turns as well as to drive into / out of garages and parking spots.