Watch These NHTSA Tesla Model 3 Crash Test Videos


This might be painful to watch.

But here’s what it looks like when a Tesla Model 3 gets crash tested for safety evaluation purposes.

Earlier today, we reported on the NHTSA awarding the Model 3 with 5 stars (the highest rating) in all categories. Like all Teslas, safety is a primary focus, so we expected that 5-star result.

The frontal crash test video is where you’ll see the vehicles massive crumple zone come into play. Due to the lack of a conventional engine up front, the crumple zone is significantly larger than your typical vehicle. This means that there’s a lot more room up front for impact to disperse.

The other two videos, side impact and side pole, don’t differentiate as much from conventional automobiles, though surely the low-mount battery takes some of the impact.

Check out these videos of the tests above and below.

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14 Comments on "Watch These NHTSA Tesla Model 3 Crash Test Videos"

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Kind of surprised the driverside airbag doesn’t deploy in either the side or side pole crash. I guess the side curtain airbags are the crucial ones in those cases, but still would think the one in the steering wheel would deploy as well just to ensure driver’s head wouldn’t strike anything forward.

Airbags usually deploy in the direction the car is decelerated and (if equipped with sensors) on the occupied seats. Not deploying unnecessary airbag has three benefits: 1 – Cost: In a light collision, each airbag not deployed can stay in the car. All the ones that pop need to be replaced. But since cost is usually not as big a factor when you are talking about saving a life… 2 – Harm: An airbag rapidly expands due to an explosion. Deploying the drivers frontal airbag for example may burn your underarms or throw them violently to the side (into the oncoming pole for example). So if the benefit is only marginal or “just in case” the drawbags may outweigh them. Plus, the airbags are well timed for impacts. If you would deploy the front airbag the very moment you hit the wall, your head would fall into an already deflating cushion. So there is no real benefit to deploy it at some unknown time in hopes the driver will need it in that exact same second. 3 – Reserve: After the reckless Audi driver hits you Tesla from the side, you might be shoved into a situation where you are… Read more »

Physics says otherwise.

you can actually be injured by airbags deploying, so only the ones that have a high probability of saving your life should ever go off.

I wonder how Bob Lutz’s VIA Motors crash??

He will have to make some of them first….

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous


We expect all cars to perform well in crash tests, if the car comes as far as to a crash then safety has already often failed…. it will be more interesting to see what ratings it will get in a real safety test like the Euro-NCAP, that will be a better benchmark for it’s safety.

It will do well there too, but then we can see more about what it excels at and what needs the most improvement.

They are so cheap – black model 3 c’mon – who gets black? Seriously…

The pole test shows why the battery packs are an advantage since the rigidity of the pack is holding up well against the pole which reduces the impact to the B pillar.

The interesting part is that during the front crash, the dummy’s right hand actually hit the center screen.

It was trying to change the radio station….

IIHS tests are the only truly relevant.

IIHS specifically designs their tests to complement NHTSA, not contradict them. Together both test sets give more information than just one set of tests or the other. It isn’t a zero sum game.

Oh the Humanity!!! *covers eyes*