This is the car for you if… You’ve always wanted to drive a Tesla but haven’t been able to afford it until now.
Welcome to the future… The Tesla Model 3 is the most affordable Tesla yet – but it doesn’t compromise on any of the state-of-the art features that have made the brand so iconic. Which explains why it caused such a storm when it launched in the summer of 2019. And why the Tesla Model 3 has been outselling hugely popular fuel-powered cars, like the Ford Focus and Vauxhall Corsa, since then.
So what makes the Telsa Model 3 so special? Well, for a start, there’s its sleek, streamlined exterior. There’s an impressive tinted glass roof that extends over the front and back seats. Making stargazing another activity you can add to entertain the kids on your next road trip.
The Long Range version comes with a bigger 75kWh battery, so you can travel 348 miles on a single charge. That’s nearly 100 miles further than the Standard Plus – and gives the Tesla a range not far off many petrol cars.
But what about the driving experience? It’s fast for a start – the Long Range does 0-60mph in 4.4 seconds. But such acceleration doesn’t come at the cost of the car’s performance on the road. For the team at Tesla have spent a lot of time developing the Model 3’s dual motor all-wheel drive system. This ensures the car grips the road beautifully in all types of weather.
Parents will also appreciate the safety features that have gone into designing the Model 3. The car’s metal structure is so strong; it was able to withstand being sat on by the equivalent weight of two full-grown African elephants during a roof-crush test. It’s not a feature we plan to test anytime soon, but one that’s reassuring nevertheless.
Back to the little touches that will make you feel like you’ve stepped into the future… Of course there’s no traditional key to open the Model 3. Instead, pull out your smartphone – download the Tesla app first – or wave the smart card over the driver’s door to unlock the vehicle.
Once inside, the first thing you’ll spot is the 15-inch touchscreen display. It’s basically a massive tablet in the centre of the dashboard – and it’s also the brains behind your Model 3. There’s no instrument cluster or dials to monitor your fuel consumption. Everything you need to know – like your speed and battery range – shows up on the touchscreen or through the Tesla app.
It makes for a very clean and slick dashboard. With a wide central console that has lots of useful storage – and two handy mobile charging points. The Long Range version also comes fully loaded with an impressive audio system. So you can listen to your favourite tunes in high-quality sound.
The leather seats add to the luxury feel of driving the Tesla Model 3. They’re fully heated – in the front and rear, in the Long Range version. Which doesn’t just make for a pleasanter drive in cold weather. But also conserves energy. So you get more miles out of the battery in chilly conditions.
There are also some futuristic autopilot features to look out for in the Model 3 too. Like its 360º cameras, a forward-facing radar system and 12 ultrasonic sensors. These are designed to keep you safe, but also make driving the Model 3 an even more comfortable experience.
Our three favourite Model 3 features:
- There are four USB points in the central console – and it’s these little details that will really appeal to families. As what’s the guessing that everyone’s electronic devices run out of battery at the same time?
- The car can recharge 170 miles in 30 minutes at one of Tesla’s supercharger locations (find these through the app). That’s probably quicker than you can order and eat a panini at the motorway service station.
- The navigation system on the touchscreen doesn’t just give you your planned route. It also shows you where charging points are based along the way and how much battery you’ll have left when you arrive.
You’ll like the Tesla Model 3 if you… have always dreamed about owning a futuristic electric car, but nightmares about how you’d pay for it.