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Consumer Reports predicts that the Tesla Model 3 will have an ‘average reliability’ rating when the vehicle eventually begins to hit the consumer market and extend beyond the few hundred vehicles first delivered to employees and their families.
Jake Fisher, director of auto testing for Consumer Reports, says they were able to come to that prediction because of historical data collected from the Tesla Model S. “What we have is a lot of data from the Tesla Model S,” notes Fisher. “That gives us a little more confidence in the Tesla Model 3.”
Though the reporting agency indicates that they have yet to purchase a Model 3 and put it through its usual series of tests, likely because Tesla is still in the midst of working through its manufacturing bottlenecks and have not opened up orders to regular consumers, Consumer Reports believes that their average outlook on the vehicle isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
“We are predicting that the Model 3 should have about average reliability,” said Fisher. “We don’t go around recommending that people buy cars that are below average, so if it is average or better, that is not a bad thing at all,” In regards to giving the Tesla Model 3 an average reliability score, Consumer Reports says, “let’s be very clear, we are not giving it super high marks. We are saying it is basically par for the course.”
A Tesla spokesperson commented on Consumer Reports premature “ranking” of the Model 3, saying that the organization’s reporting is “consistently inaccurate” and “misleading”.
“Consumer Reports has not yet driven a Model 3, let alone do they know anything substantial about how the Model 3 was designed and engineered,” says a Tesla spokesperson. “Time and time again, our own data shows that Consumer Reports’ automotive reporting is consistently inaccurate and misleading to consumers.”
The results are in from over 100,000 respondents that used the Tesla Model 3 monthly cost calculator by Ben Sullins. Data gleaned from users that estimated their vehicle cost based on paint color, wheel selection, premium upgrades packages, and Autopilot, suggests that the Tesla Model 3 will cost $900 per month on average.
Beyond computing Model 3’s monthly cost from user selected vehicle options, the cost estimator also factors in driving style, one’s daily commute distance, energy costs from charging, as well as insurance and loan terms. The comprehensive analysis by Sullins of Teslanomics provides arguably the most accurate assessment to date on what the average Model 3 buyer might be paying each month to own the vehicle.
The results also reveal some interesting findings on what Model 3 reservation holders are looking to purchase. According to data captured by Teslanomics, nearly 50% of Model 3 buyers will select the color black. 60% will retain the standard Model 3 aero wheels presumably because of its range benefits and cost savings. Though the Tesla community in large objects to the aesthetic appeal of the hubcap-like wheel covering, Model 3 owners that dislike the look have the option to remove the aero wheel covering.
Watch as Sullins talks about other popular Model 3 options and discusses the results of his data analysis. We’ve also highlighted the most popular Tesla Model 3 configurations directly below the video.
Most popular Tesla Model 3 configurations (from 100k+ people who submitted to the Model 3 monthly cost estimator)
Color: 50% will choose black Wheels: 60% aero wheels Premium Package: 60% will select Battery: 49% of Model 3 buyers will select the Long Range version Autopilot: 50% do not want Enhanced Autopilot of Full Self-Driving Loan: 75% chose a 60 month loan term, 10% chose a 72 month term Daily commute: ~40 miles (64 kilometers) Source
Tesla Model 3’s sleek and minimalistic interior has arguably become the poster child for what self-driving cars of the future should look like. Going sans instrument cluster in favor of a center-mounted, single 15-inch, horizontal touchscreen, in one respect is groundbreaking and dares to be different from the status quo. But behind Tesla Chief Designer Franz von Holzhausen’s bold center dashboard design is a purpose – one of many: maximize Model 3’s interior space.
Thanks to Joe Torbati at OCDetailing who in recent weeks has become a God amongst men in the Tesla community after posting a series of Model 3 walk around videos, we have a detailed look at how Model 3’s interior space stacks up against Model S and Model X. We’ve provided a list of Joe’s Model 3 review videos for reference.
Tesla Model 3 full-car walk around video Tesla Model 3 interior features Tesla Model 3 exterior features At 6 feet tall (183 cm), Joe notes that Model 3 has a spacious driver’s seating area and ample leg room to suit his stature. Looking at a side-by-side specifications sheet that compares Model 3 with Model S interior dimensions and we can see that both match up closely. In fact, Tesla’s compact Model 3 has slightly better front and rear headroom than the Model S.
Joe also compares the interior space of Model 3 and Model X, saying that the Falcon-winged SUV is a far bigger vehicle. However, and despite Model X’s larger vehicle size, leg room in the middle row of Model X felt smaller than Model 3’s backseat.
TESLA MODEL 3
TESLA MODEL S
TESLA MODEL X
Head room (front) 39.6″ 38.8″ 41.7″ Head room (rear) 37.7″ 35.3″ 40.9″ (middle row) 37.9″ (third row) Leg room (front) 42.7″ 42.7″ 41.2″ Leg room (rear) 35.2″ 35.4″ 38.4″ (middle row) 32.7″ (third row) Shoulder room (front) 56.3″ 57.7″ 60.7″ Shoulder room (rear) 54.0″ 55.0″ 32.7″ (middle row) 40.0″ (third row) Hip room (front) 53.4″ 55.0″ 55.6″ (middle row) Hip room (rear) 52.4″ 54.7″ 59.0″ (third row) 38.5″ (middle row) Check out Joe’s latest Model 3 video and let us know what you think about the vehicle’s interior space. Does Model 3’s backseat look bigger than Model X’s middle row? How do you think Model 3’s interior space matches up against the Model S?
Tesla released the Model 3 Emergency Response Guide, providing an in-depth look into the full makeup and chassis composition of the Model 3, detailed safety features, and information on how to properly cut the vehicle open in the event of a major crash.
The guide is specifically crafted for first responders arriving at the scene of a crash or emergency involving a Model 3. Its table of contents shows several subsections regarding air bags, high voltage components, what to do if the vehicle is submerged, and how to fight a fire inside the Model 3.
Notably, the Model 3, like the Model S and Model X, should be treated as any other Tesla when submerged or partially submerged. It reminds first responders that the Model 3 is no greater risk of electric shock than any other vehicle.
“The body of Model 3 does not present a greater risk of shock because it is in water. However, handle any submerged vehicle while wearing the appropriate PPE. Remove the vehicle from the water and continue with normal high voltage disabling,” the report reads.
Once removed from water, the report provides a detailed look on how to cut cables to disable the high voltage components of the vehicle.
One area where the battery could pose a different risk from internal combustion engine vehicles is in firefighting. The report details that a battery fire should be put out with only water, and that it could take up to 3,000 gallons of water to ensure the fire is out.
“It can take approximately 3,000 gallons of water, applied directly to the battery, to fully extinguish and cool down a battery fire; always establish or request an additional water supply. If water is not immediately available, use dry chemicals, CO2, foam, or another typical fire-extinguishing agent to fight the fire until water is available,” the report reads.
In addition to this information, the guide also features designs of the primarily high-strength and ultra high-strength steel chassis for the vehicle and areas deemed “no cut zones.” This specific information is for first responders who may need to cut the vehicle open for extraction and rescue of people trapped inside.
The “no cut zones,” designated in the diagram with a pink color, should be avoided because of high voltage, gas and other hazards that may exist in that area of the vehicle. The other reinforced steel areas of the car are recommended cut zones used for dismantling.
We previously saw Model 3’s strategic blend of aluminum, mild steel, high-strength and ultra high-strength steel used in various layers and sections of the vehicle’s chassis, as illustrated in the Model 3 Body Repair Tech Note.
Details regarding the location of Model 3 VIN numbers and other information (jack points, airbag locations, etc.) to be used in the scene of an accident is outlined in the Tesla Model 3 Emergency Response Guide.
Tesla’s mission is simple and includes getting other automakers to join in the party. The Chevy Bolt, quirky as it may look, technically beat Tesla to market with a 200+ mile range EV that can be had for the $35,000 ballpark. Nissan, who I humbly believe to be the only other automaker currently taking full EVs seriously, has just announced their all new 2018 Leaf. The party is undoubtedly slow, but other automakers such as Volvo have at least talked about “electrification” (clever marketing shorthand for hybrids) but we can no longer deny that electric vehicles are here and their growth will not be able to be stopped.
Just as every concept EV talked about before 2016 was touted as a “Tesla killer,” it is now impossible not to compare every new electric offering with the much anticipated Tesla Model 3. So let’s do just that. The table below highlights some key specs for each.
NISSAN LEAF TESLA MODEL 3 Base price, before tax credits $29,990 $35,000 Price with options SL – $36,200 Premium + EAP – $45,000 Range (miles) 150 (higher coming 2019) 220 (310 for $9,000 upgrade) Battery 40 kWh/ (higher coming 2019) Undisclosed Charge time – Level 2 Up to 22 miles per hour Up to 30 miles per hour (std batt) Charge time – Level 3 Up to 88 miles per ½ hour Up to 130 miles per ½ hour (std) Charging network No dedicated network Tesla Supercharger, pay per use Overall Length/Width 176.4” / 70.5” 184.8” / 82.2” Cargo space 23.6 cf 15 cf Body style 4-door sedan 4-door hatchback Infotainment Apple CarPlay, Android Auto Tesla’s own Main display 7” 15” 0-60 mph time 8 seconds (Motor Trend est.) 5.6 seconds Driver’s Assist Suite ProPILOT ($2,200) Autopilot ($5,000) Automatic Emergency Braking Standard Standard
If you want to get into a relatively long range EV (150 miles or greater) for the lowest possible price, the base 2018 Nissan Leaf wins out. I will also assume that you will be able to get your hands on a Leaf much sooner than a Model 3. Finally, if you absolutely insist on a hatchback, the Leaf has it.
Outside of those three things, and possibly the still large size of a Model 3, I can’t personally find any reason to choose a Leaf over a Model 3. To be clear I’m proud of Nissan for upping their game a bit. The 2018 version is in my very humble opinion, far superior in the looks department to the frog-like 2017 it is replacing. Nissan’s V-Motion grille is sharp, and hopefully takes your attention off the obvious charge port cover above it. The lines of the car itself are much more closely aligned with Nissan’s other offerings, which I find to have adequate design. Similarly, the rear tail lights are modern and edgy. If you can excuse all the buttons, the interior looks sharp. The Apple and Android faithful alike will appreciate the available car play integration. The bottom line for me is that every EV is a step in the right direction, even if this car won’t compel families to ditch the gasoline completely. In the absence of a reliable and dedicated fast charging network for long distance travel, the Leaf is still primarily a commuter car. 150 miles of range will simply allow a few after work activities without much thought.
I am excited to see the range and price that Nissan makes available in 2019 because for now, the base cost per mile of $199.93 falls far short of Tesla’s $159.09. I’d also like to see them re-think their battery management system, which I am to understand leaves something to be desired. One owner described his experience with a 2014 Leaf as losing 20% capacity thus far.
When looking at what we know about the Model 3 however, I can’t really compare the Leaf in any serious manner. I’m trying to be reasonable, to give Nissan a fair shake, but there are several things that make me a Tesla fanatic that are sorely missing from the Leaf – and any other current EV for that matter – that may or may not ever come close.
Supercharging. EVs will remain a commuter or secondary car until you can load up the kids and head to Disney with the reasonable assurance that there are plenty of chargers along the way that will a) be working, and b) charge quickly. Tesla has made a huge commitment in this front because they know that’s what it takes.
Over the air updates. I have not yet heard of Nissan taking this approach, but I suspect if they do, it would be limited to maps and small changes. I don’t foresee the Leaf being able to give your car the sudden ability to automatically open your garage four years after you’ve purchased it. Some current automakers do have software updates for their vehicles, but my understanding is that you have to bring it in to the dealership to have it done. This totally defeats the purpose.
Dealerships. You’d be hard pressed to find a harsher critic of dealerships than I. Whether discussing the 2011 Jeep Wrangler that took me 3 hours to get for the exact price I walked in and demanded, or that time I spoke on behalf of a recently widowed neighbor with an actual cash budget who could not, no matter how you pitch it, afford that extended dealer’s warranty package, I can go on and on and about how much I dislike the experience. It always takes hours. You always get passed around from salesperson to manager to finance person. You may even get your credit run 10 times simultaneously (I’m talking to you, Hyundai dealership!) No thank you. I will order my car online, know the exact price and meet you there with a pre-printed check for the exact amount owed.
Looks. I get it, I really do, people love hatchbacks. My Model S is a hatch and has accommodated many a Home Depot trip. My once beloved Scion tC was a hatch, and once hauled 27 boxes of Pergo brand laminate floor planks. Even the Jeep with the horrible dealership experience picked up a washing machine. A washing machine! But I simply cannot wrap my head around the idea that you could conceivably compare the gorgeous, timeless and sleek looks of the Model 3 with the quirky, if a bit modern and sharp, Nissan Leaf.
Performance. There’s a reason I never considered a hybrid or EV before. Now that I’m a bit older and have the budget to pick a car I actually like, I’m not going to voluntarily drive something that takes 8 seconds to get to 60. I want tight steering, good handling, and the ability to make my passengers squeal with delight when I punch it.
Interior. This is a personal preference and I’m with you if you think the minimalistic interior of the Model 3 is crazy. It is. But I can just about promise you that you will not miss all those buttons. I sat in a Porsche Macan at the auto show and while I expected to feel great inside a new offering from a brand with as much clout as Porsche, I was too busy wondering what in the world all those buttons did. It’s almost a joke how many.
Confession: I started this post excited about the new Leaf. I tweeted about it first thing this morning; the more the merrier in EV world if you ask me. But when getting right down to the specifications, it’s hard not to see that everyone else still has a long way to go. They’re taking baby steps while Tesla is competing in the long jump.
What do you think? Do the two cars compare? Tell us in the comments!
Tesla Model 3 reservation holders can now have a head start when it comes to calculating their soon-to-be monthly payment thanks to a new online calculator created by self-proclaimed data geek and Model S owner Ben Sullins of Teslanomics.
The Model 3 Monthly Cost Estimator uses a four step questionnaire to provide reservation holders with their financial big picture with owning a Model 3. Teslanomics’ tool accounts for loan rates, tax incentives, insurance costs, and even charging costs to establish an overall monthly cost of owning the vehicle. While Model 3 will fall under Tesla’s pay-per-use Supercharging model, Teslanomics assumes that a 40 mile daily commute under a spirited “fast” driving style will equate to roughly $1.80 per day in charging costs, or roughly $54.00 per month.
Aside from having the ability to select from current Model 3 upgrades including battery range, wheel size, paint color, premium upgrade, and Autopilot, Sullins even went as far as including a currency converter within the cost estimator.
This latest calculator builds on Teslanomics’ previous tool that predicted the cost of a Model 3 after tax credits and comes ahead of Tesla’s wide rollout of the official Model 3 online configurator. Enter your Model 3 configuration details in the calculator below and find out what the vehicle could cost you per month.
Please note that the calculator is being provided courtesy of Teslanomics and will prompt users with an optional contact form at the end of Step 4 (scroll back up to view results after clicking “See Results”).
A video has been unearthed on YouTube that shows a Tesla executive in charge of the Model 3 production line giving a pep talk to Fremont factory workers before the Model 3 delivery event.
The person in the video appears to be Peter Hochholdinger, the long-time Audi exec that Tesla hired away to manage its Model 3 production line. Hochholdinger’s official position title is Vice President of Production at Fremont.
“There’s a lot of work in front of us, who’s scared about that?” Hochholdinger asks. No one raises their hands, and the crowd goes into laughter as Hochholdinger says “Good! Thank you!”
Joking aside, Hochholdinger had a more serious point he wanted his workers to absorb.
“Everybody in this company has to put his hands on this car,” Hochholdinger says in a clear reference to the teamwork it took to get the Model 3 from concept to car.
The video was posted by Like Tesla, a YouTube channel covering one family’s Tesla adventures.
Ironically enough, Hochholdinger’s pep talk came just hours before Musk’s mentioning of “production hell,” a reference to the company’s S-Curve. The S-Curve requires a patience that Tesla fans have learned to endure and Wall Street skeptics have spit bullets over.
The video also shows different Tesla insiders, such as our friend Ben Sullins of Teslanomics and Tesla owner parody fame, getting behind the wheel of the Model 3.
Tesla Senior Design Executive Franz von Holzhausen was also spotted talking to the crowd about the forthcoming Tesla Semi, which is set to be released in a month’s time.
“A lot of people don’t think you can do a heavy duty long-range truck that is electric. But, we are confident that this can be done,” Musk said previously.
The confidence Musk has in the Semi is reflective of the confidence him and production directors such as Hochholdinger have in their staff.
“We’re going to change the world, and the beginning is today,” Hochholdinger says.
Following the trend of Tesla’s “rapid scaling” after the launch of its Model 3, CEO Elon Musk said he thinks demand could one day hit 700,000 Model 3 cars per year.
Musk made the statement on a call with investors to discuss yesterday’s bond offering news, according to The Street.
The EV CEO had previously pegged annual peak production estimates at around 500,000.
“They are constantly spending on the next big innovation, whether the public knows what that is or not,” James Albertine of Consumer Edge Research LLC told the news outlet. “The market should want to give innovative companies more capital as long as they perform, and Tesla is clearly performing.”
Musk aims to produce cars at a rate of 500,000 per year by the close of 2018. Last year the company produced 84,000 vehicles, a 64% gain from 2015.
This comes on the heels of yesterday’s news about Tesla raising capital through its issuing of bonds. The capital will be used for this exponential Model 3 ramp.
“Tesla intends to use the net proceeds from this offering to further strengthen its balance sheet during this period of rapid scaling with the launch of Model 3, and for general corporate purposes,” the company said in a prepared statement.
This is the first time the company is selling non-convertible bonds.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk has previously made statements about how the company would be enduring “production hell” in the near future, a reference to Tesla’s production S-Curve and the resources required to get the wheels turning early on.
The $1.5 billion bond can also be seen as part of the Model 3 S-Curve. The S-Curve, which features a diffusion of innovation and allows for a company to explore the most efficient way to make its product, requires big-time investment and resources early on.
Tesla had $3 billion in cash at the end of the second quarter and is expected to burn around $2 billion this year.
The EPA released its Certification Summary Information Report of Tesla’s Model 3, and it contains some new information on battery specifications and horsepower rating for the premium electric sedan.
According to the EPA filing, the long range Model 3 that’s capable of 310 miles per single charge uses a battery pack rated at 350 volts with a capacity of 230Ah. Multiplying the two figures together and we can see that Model 3 uses an 80.5 kWh battery pack.
Also seen in the EPA document via InsideEVs is a reference to Model 3’s 258 rated horsepower. It’s important to note that the performance figure is for the first production long range Model 3 which is equipped with a single electric motor and comes standard in a rear wheel drive only configuration. According to Tesla CEO Elon Musk, the performance variant of the Model 3 in all wheel drive is expected to arrive in mid-2018. One can expect a Model 3 “P” to have well over 400 horsepower in a dual motor set up.
InsideEVs notes that “although Tesla CEO Elon Musk previously stated that the Model 3 can’t fit more than 75 kWh of battery, his reference could’ve well been to useable, not max capacity of the pack, so the numbers still fit in with his past statement.”
The EPA Certification Summary report points to an “END-SOC” or state of charge level of 78270 watt-hours or 78.2 kWh of useable battery capacity.
The figures reported by the EPA have not yet been confirmed by Tesla.
All in all, it looks as if the Model 3 with a 3,837 pound curb weight (1,740 kg) will be one of the most efficient vehicles in modern history. You can read the EPA document in full here.
So you have your Tesla Model 3 reservation, but realize you no longer want it, is there a way to sell your Model 3 reservation to another person?
The short answer is “not really,” but our friend Ben Sullins at Teslanomics dives into the legal loopholes of the Model 3 agreement with YouTuber and attorney, Franklin Graves.
Graves points out that under section 6 of the reservation agreement, it clearly states “This agreement is not transferrable or assignable to another party without the prior written approval of a Tesla authorized representative.”
So the slightly longer answer is, “yes, with Tesla’s permission,” but Sullins and Graves dig a little deeper, touching on the fact that Tesla may allow you to transfer rights to a relative or loved one, but not for a profit.
Sullins also advises against buying a Model 3 reservation because it could either be a scam or Tesla could retroactively cancel it if they find out.
In terms of selling the vehicle once you own it, that is an entirely different story.
Graves points out that there is nothing noticeable in the contract preventing you from selling the vehicle upon its delivery, and Tesla would receive consumer backlash for claiming it still had rights to a vehicle that was purchased by a consumer.
The final point Sullins touches on is making a profit through selling the car after you get the $7500 federal tax credit that comes with purchasing a Tesla. Sullins tries to dissuade viewers of the idea because the government could tax your sale of the car as income, making for a fruitless endeavor.
Sullins urges viewers to talk to a tax professional before going down that route.
The video itself is informative and definitely a good view if you are wondering what exactly your rights are. As Sullins and Graves reiterate throughout the video, use caution before trying to do any of these things, and it is always best to consult an attorney or professional when handling contractual loopholes.
The latest Tesla Model 3 reservation count pegs the number at 518,000 gross reservations and 455,000 units after cancellations. The latest number was confirmed by Tesla CEO Elon Musk during Wednesday’s questions and answers portion of the company’s 2017 second quarter earnings.
Musk noted that the net 455,000 Model 3 reservations occurred over the course of the year and includes Model 3 cancellations, but has continued to see net gains of roughly 1,800 Model 3 reservations being placed per day since last Friday’s Model 3 Delivery Event.
Up until the delivery event, rumors of Model 3 reservation counts exceeding 400,000 remained largely unconfirmed by the Silicon Valley-based electric car maker. Today’s announcement of 518,000 gross Model 3 reservations is inline with Musk’s “zero concern” that the company will be able to hit a production rate of 10,000 cars per week by the end of 2018.
As Tesla continues to build out Model 3’s production line at the company’s Fremont, California factory, actual vehicle production will follow a S-curve wherein a quick ramp up in production is followed by steady-state. This is then followed by another exponential ramp up in production.
Tesla unveiled over 30 production Model 3 vehicles on July 28 at its Delivery Event. The company expects to reach a production rate of roughly 5,000 vehicles per week by the end of the year.
The S-Curve: Tesla CEO Elon Musk is constantly referring to it, but what does it even mean? It could be the reason Tesla’s Model 3 revolutionizes the automotive industry.
The California-based electric car maker recently tweeted a visual representation of the S curve to make things clear for Tesla fans.
Essentially, the S-Curve is a production prediction that requires a company to invest vast amounts of money and resources at the beginning of production to work out the most efficient option. It’s about diffusion of innovation — as new ideas are tested, efficiency is reached, which leads to a higher volume of production.
As factory production ramps up, the low volume numbers in the beginning allow management to tweak and adjust logistics in order to create a product in the most efficient manner.
This requires time and energy, and results in a lot of trial-and-error for a company. As the company produces more of its product and fine-tunes its process, it becomes more efficient until it reaches full volume production.
Musk clarified further during the Q2 earnings report on Aug. 2.
“Model 3 drive units as well as battery packs made with our proprietary 2170 form factor cells are being built on new lines at Gigafactory 1. We are now fine-tuning these manufacturing lines to significantly increase the production rate,” Musk said. “We wish we could do all of this faster and get everyone’s Model 3 to them right away. It’s important to understand that our production ramp will follow an S-Curve, meaning that it will begin slowly, grow exponentially, then start to tail off once we achieve full production.”
These first few stages are the “production hell” that Musk nodded to during last week’s Model 3 delivery event. The S-Curve requires a patience that Tesla fans have learned to endure and skeptics on Wall Street have boiled about.
Melissa Schilling, professor of management and organizations at NYU’s Stern School of Business, recently told CNBC that the beginning of the S-Curve requires a company to pump a lot of money into their production line while getting very little in return.
As Model 3 production ramps up, it will reach full efficiency and tail off production increases will begin to plateau.
“As you start getting to the top, you’ve picked all the low-hanging fruit,” Schilling said. “Now (you) need to spend a lot more to get further.”
So as time moves on for Musk and Tesla, production will become more efficient and high-volume goals will be met.
It’s finally here! The much awaited Tesla Model 3 finally exists! Perhaps you were a little surprised and bummed (like me, admittedly) that you would have to wait even longer for the $35,000 base battery version. Perhaps you’re disappointed that the base model will not come with power seats or that in order to get a glass roof, you’re forced into premium interiors as well. Perhaps you’ve spent your time on Twitter, Facebook and online forums complaining about how you feel bamboozled and just can’t wrap your head around having to spend so much for the minimum amount of features you’re willing to accept.
If you are, let me break it down for you right quick. You cannot compare a Tesla to any other $35,000 car, period. Here’s why:
There are fundamental reasons why an electric car (or a car from any small car company) costs more to start. For one, you are trading a several hundred dollar recurring gas habit for a one time several thousand dollar battery pack. Secondly, you are comparing the cost of manufacturing for a company that makes millions of cars per year to one that has only made a fraction of that count. Those things aside, let me explain to you what you will be getting when you get a $35,000 base Model 3, and see for yourself whether or not these things should or do come standard in any other comparatively priced car.
Automatic emergency braking and collision avoidance 15” touchscreen Onboard maps and navigation Wi-Fi and LTE internet connectivity Remote climate control with app Internet streaming radio 8 year, 100,000 mile battery warranty (the most expensive part of the car) I haven’t gone and checked every car out there but let’s assume you’ve found an example that comes with all of the above and more. See for yourself whether any other car in that price range, electric or otherwise, can also claim all of these:
No haggle pricing Online ordering No up-selling of tire protection, undercoating or similar dealership options Peace of mind that parts and service will never be a profit center “Fuel” that costs a fraction of what gasoline does per mile No tailpipe emissions 0-60 in 5.6 seconds Over the air software updates and improvements Potentially mobile (come to your door) or remote service to correct problems American designed and manufactured No salespeople who work on commission A huge crumple zone making it exponentially safer in a frontal collision A rigid side frame making it exponentially safer in a t-bone collision While it’s tempting for first time electric vehicle consumer to compare it to a gasoline powered car, take it from me that you just can’t. You can compare the two no more than I can compare my $219.00 microwave to the $219.00 laptop that I recently bought my Mom. One will heat up my food and aside from having a built in timer that can be used when the device itself isn’t in use, has few other features. But it’s great at heating up my food. The other can play music, watch movies, store pictures, compose documents, connect me to the outside world and a whole host of other things. But man is that laptop is lousy at heating up my leftovers.
What else do you get? Cool factor? An American designed and built car? Let me know in the comments!
With the final installment of the Tesla Model 3 release complete, Tesla fans everywhere are wondering if the vehicle lives up to all the hype.
Already Tesla has departed from conventional automotive norms: a keycard will be used in place of a key fob, an enhanced touchscreen display can control all aspects of the vehicle, and the battery range proves to be longer than competitors like the Chevy Bolt.
All the while, the Model 3’s initial price — one that makes all the bells and whistles mandatory for the first models sold — is pushing closer to the $50,000 mark as opposed to the $35,000.
So what do the experts who participated in Model 3 test drives think of the car that could change the automotive industry?
“Stab the accelerator and the car sprints like an Olympic 100-meter champion, thanks to the instant torque provided by its battery-powered electric motor,” wrote Marco della Cava for USA Today.
While the power impressed della Cava, the visibility also turned his head: a two-pane glass roof made it easy to see forward, backward and even upward.
Lance Unlanoff with Mashable had an excellent experience with his test drive.
“This is how an electric car should feel,” wrote Unlanoff. “Hell, this is how all cars should feel.”
He said the new dash system, which features only a 15-inch LCD screen, wowed him, providing excellent visibility and a comfortable feel.
“The Model 3 interior is like a cockpit from the future,” he wrote.
Unlanoff then adjusted the steering wheel using the LCD screen writing, “It was so cool and, I assumed, a more complex way of handling manual steering wheel adjustment. However, Tesla execs explained this takes fewer parts and is just another way they simplified production.”
MotorTrend fell in love with the Model 3 as well, saying the vehicle goes beyond the hype.
“The Tesla Model 3 is here, and it is the most important vehicle of the century,” wrote Kim Reynolds. “Yes, the hyperbole is necessary.”
The Model 3 has definitely made the splash Tesla CEO Elon Musk was hoping for. Based on these reviews, there’s no doubt that the vehicle shows the considerable promise of being the iPhone of the automotive industry.
The real work for Musk and his team, however, starts now. The tech mogul already compared Tesla’s current situation to “production hell,” and the next few months will prove whether Tesla can fulfill the second part of its promise: delivering the vehicle to hundreds of thousands of people.
The Model 3 has impressed, now can production match the hype?
Yesterday I spoke to BBC Newsday about the Tesla Model 3 and one of the questions they asked was “is the Tesla Model 3 a game changer”. Even before incentives the Model 3 competes with other entry level luxury vehicles like the BMW 3 series and Audi A4. With incentives it moves even further down-market, competing with big sellers like the Toyota Camry (the USA’s top selling car in 2016). That definitely moves Tesla into the mass market with a lot of opportunity to grow. There are some additional factors though that I think makes it a true game changer.
It’s already a game changer. Just over a year ago most automakers still dismissed Tesla as a niche manufacturer and articles still wrote about how electric vehicles were decades out or may never come to fruition. Then Telsa had almost 400,000 preorders for a vehicle no one had actually driven, most had only seen through their computer screens, and wouldn’t be available for over a year. I was one of those people.
Fast forward to today, with manufacturers practically falling over each other to announce their own electric vehicle programs and new targets. The discussion has flipped. Articles are no longer written about if electric vehicles are coming but how quickly. I think we have the Tesla Model 3 to thank for that.
Preorders are one thing, but can the Model 3 compete in a world of mostly combustion vehicles? That will depend on the value customers assign to it. My opinion is that Model 3 is the first lower cost electric vehicle to cross the ‘value threshold’. What I mean by that is that a buyer considering two vehicles in the same class and quality, one electric and one combustion, would chose the Model 3 over the combustion option. The Model 3 is just the better all-around car.
Consider the Chevy Bolt, a good car, but a more difficult sell on value proposition. Does it actually provide $37,500 worth of value to the buyer or could I purchase an internal combustion vehicle that provides me more value (as per classic capitalism this is largely ignoring the societal and environmental benefits to others, which can be difficult for most buyers to quantify – it’s not right, just reality).
The factors at play are complex, the initial purchase price, comfort, reliability, range, acceleration and speed, safety, handling, aesthetics, operating costs, convenience, and environmental impact. These all go into a buyer’s value calculation, mostly subconsciously. For me I can’t think of another vehicle that hits those categories as well as the Model 3.
Economics and Cost Reductions
Customer value is great but Tesla more than any other automaker needs to produce electric vehicles with a decent profit margin. It doesn’t have a lot of gas guzzling expensive SUVs to offset losses on EVs. Other automakers have claimed they are perfectly willing to make EVs at a loss, which seems largely driven by meeting emissions targets in key US states (California, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Vermont). That may also be why GM is pulling back on Bolt production, if they’re approaching their quotas in those states . In Ontario Canada, which has no such requirements, the Chevy Bolt is sold out until January 2018 and the only one available to test drive is at the non-profit organization Plug’n Drive in Toronto. A lot has been made in the past of Tesla’s business losses, but those include capital investments and R&D. They do in fact make a profit on their vehicles, but invest more money on improvements and expansions than that profit totals. Making an affordable electric vehicle at a profit is a challenge Tesla seems confident they’ve achieved. That’s a big deal. A game changer.
To be a game changer though the Model 3 can’t just be another lower priced electric vehicle. It has to be innovative and it is absolutely that. It will be using a new battery format, autonomous driving hardware, and it’ll likely be using Tesla’s newly optimized powertrain with 1 million miles capability + faster acceleration.
Tesla Model 3 prototype from the March 31, 2016 unveiling event in Hawthorne, CA
With those improved batteries and powertrain it should be one of the most efficient electric vehicles on the road. There’s also the Supercharger network which really opens up the options for long distance driving, more than any other manufacturer. These capabilities will set a new benchmark for affordable electric vehicles.
Tonight it will be very interesting to see what the final specs. Will anyone be able to match it? Let the (affordable) EV space race begin!
What do you think? Is the Model 3 a game changer and why?
Tesla has revealed that its premium Model 3 will cost $44,000 before tax rebates, a $9,000 increase over its $35,000 base price.
The announcement was made by CEO Elon Musk at tonight’s highly exclusive Tesla Model 3 Delivery event.
The base pricing with the standard feature sets goes for $35,000 and a $1,000 reservation fee. With this payment, you get a Model 3 equipped with Autopilot hardware, supercharging, seating for five adults, 215 miles per charge and my personal favorite feature: 0 to 60 mph in under six seconds.
As we previously reported, a Model 3 with a larger battery pack would cost around $42,000 to be profitable. The Model 3 premium price is $2,000 above that margin.
The Model 3 is a linchpin of Musk’s master plan. Musk said back in 2006 that Tesla would eventually build “affordably priced family cars” after establishing itself with more expensive vehicles. The flagship Model S for example starts at $69,500, almost double the cost of the Model 3.
The company started taking Model 3 reservations in March of last year and within a month, 373,000 customers had put down the $1,000 refundable deposit. Tesla hasn’t commented on reservation numbers since, but the company website says people who make reservations now should expect to get their Model 3 to roll up in mid-2018. As of tonight, it appears that at least 30 of the first customers will receive their vehicles and be able to take them home.
The Model 3 and its efficient batteries, even at the premium price, gives more people the opportunity to shrink their carbon footprint while driving in style.
It’s finally official: the Tesla Model 3 will feature two battery options, one with 220 miles of range and a second with 310 miles of range.
While Tesla CEO Elon Musk did not go into details of the battery pack, it is assumed that it will still utilize the company’s newest 2170 lithium ion cell. Musk did not disclose the size of the battery packs, just their range, performance and respective pricing.
As previously speculated, the Model 3 will be offered — before state and government incentives — at $35,000 with the standard range option and $44,000 if upgraded to the long-range option. As the newly affordable EV from Tesla, the Model 3 has taken its first step to cementing itself as the game changing electric car with the best technology, customer value and, internally, a vehicle that delivers high profit margins.
The battery range and power, and access to Tesla’s extensive Supercharger network could mean that the Model 3 will soon chip away at a market that’s been predominantly ruled by internal combustion engine (ICE) cars.
The announcement came as part of the Model 3 delivery event in Fremont, Calif. CEO Elon Musk told Tesla fans and future owners about the new battery and range options before handing over the first 30 Model 3s to their respective new owners. Musk stated that the company has produced 50 production cars this month, with the other 20 vehicles being used for validation testing.
With a design that is lightweight and sports an industry-leading drag coefficient, Tesla Model 3 could be among the most efficient vehicles on the road. The Model 3 will also be one of the lowest cost EVs, while sporting one of the highest ranges on the market. The Chevy Bolt, that starts at $36,620, tops out at 238-miles of range, while the Model 3 goes all the way to 310-miles.
If Model 3 production can match Musk’s goals, its price and technical capabilities could enable it to revolutionize modern transportation across the globe.
As we originally reported, Tesla has confirmed that accessing and starting the Model 3 can be done through the use of a keycard but also through one’s smartphone.
The Silicon Valley electric car company has ditched the ubiquitous Tesla key fob in the Model 3 for a pair of near-field communication (NFC) keycards that can be used for accessing the car. The cards are embedded with a tiny chip that acts as a digital signature for the vehicle. Since NFC technology generally has a limited transmission range of roughly 4-inches, Model 3 owners will be required to tap the B-pillar to unlock the door, followed by a tap between the front seats to start the car. This would explain why Tesla SVP of Engineering Doug Field was seen placing the keycard inside Model 3’s front cupholders.
Tesla has also incorporated a digital key that’s transmitted through a driver’s smartphone using Bluetooth LE, a low energy standard for Bluetooth that’s supported by most smartphones. Unlike Tesla’s current keyless entry system that requires drivers to access a sequence of buttons on its mobile app, Model 3 will use a unique bluetooth signal from your phone to unlock the car as you approach it, and start it when you get inside.
The decision to do away with the Tesla key fob that’s currently being used in the Model S and Model X is seen as a move that allows the company to further cut costs on Model 3 production, and reduce complexity wherever possible.
We’ve published the full specification list for Model 3 which includes itemized upgrade pricing for its long range 310 mile option.
We’re bringing you a behind-the-scenes look at the Tesla Model 3 event from Fremont, California. Elon Musk is set to take stage at 9pm Pacific to deliver the final chapter in his original Tesla Master Plan – Use that (Model S, X) money to create an affordable, high volume car.
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