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Car and Driver Model 3 Test - Not Great

igotzzoom

Active Member
May 26, 2013
1,217
585
Mission Viejo, CA
Car and Driver seemed less than blown-away: 2018 Tesla Model 3 Test | Review | Car and Driver

"Although it shows promising flashes of cleverness in its execution, the Model 3 in its current form feels just shy of complete. What’s more, at $50,000 and up, it also falls short of its mission to provide affordable and accessible electric motoring to a wide spectrum of the population. As much as Tesla has achieved here in creating a nicely integrated, capable, and relatively fun entry-luxury EV, we’re still left waiting—along with all those hopeful would-be owners—for the Model 3 to change the world."
 

PoitNarf

My dog's breath smells like dog food
Jun 7, 2016
2,870
4,008
NJ
Read the article, most of their gripes are non-issues for me. The one thing I do agree with is their assessment of the high rear shelf. I do wish the view out the back allowed me to see more of the lower part of cars behind me. For me though it’s really a minor issue and about the only complaint I can come up with at this point after 2 days of ownership. Fit and finish of my Model 3 appears to be great, no panel gap issues that I can readily identify and no rattles or other sounds when driving either.
 
Jun 2, 2016
15
50
Minneapolis
Just cancelled my subscription of about 20 years. This was the last straw as they have shown little interest in the coming EV revolution (which they would LOL at). I was figuring that the Model 3 would finally open some eyes there, but it is apparently not to be. They have done a few articles on EVs, but the editorial and tech slant is strongly in the legacy automaker / ICE camp.
 

insaneoctane

Active Member
Apr 6, 2016
3,619
7,680
Southern California
Just cancelled my subscription of about 20 years. This was the last straw as they have shown little interest in the coming EV revolution (which they would LOL at). I was figuring that the Model 3 would finally open some eyes there, but it is apparently not to be. They have done a few articles on EVs, but the editorial and tech slant is strongly in the legacy automaker / ICE camp.
Maybe they will come around when BMW or Honda does it ;)
 

McRat

Well-Known Member
Jan 20, 2016
5,771
5,414
LA
The review was to an extent less than useful for buyers.

The biggest consumer for EVs is the coastal regions of California, and 28°F testing results are silly for us.

Even for the rest of the country, while cold weather EV performance is important to know, it does not reflect the majority of driving.

It would be testing modern sports car with Summer Only tires in the snow. Interesting info, but not helpful for making decisions.

But Tesla's marketing team is sort of to blame. They had cars that could be tested in the summer and fall, and even in California. It was their choice to only allow very limited press testing on the cars. The winter testing conditions might have even been poke at Tesla since the magazine admits they know winter testing is hard on EVs.
 
Jun 2, 2016
15
50
Minneapolis
The review was to an extent less than useful for buyers.

The biggest consumer for EVs is the coastal regions of California, and 28°F testing results are silly for us.
Being in Minnesota, this has been one of the plusses for me with C&D. They get snow and potholes (although I guess you have the latter in CA also). As with long range in general, cold weather is a special use case. I drove an i3 BEV for 2 years, summer and winter, here. Range dropped to <50 mi / charge on coldest days, but was still enough for my daily commute. Car only got >40 mi from my house once in those two years and yet, fulfilled all my needs. (We also own ICE cars.) Model 3 will serve all needs except towing, for which we'll hang on to a RAV4 until Model Y or whatever is available. Not buying any more ICE.
 

Eclectic

Member
Nov 8, 2014
773
920
Montana
Definitely not enamored. I suspect most of their criticality is valid. But, they also did not seem appropriately impressed with the powertrain either.
Appropriately impressed? They gave an objective review of the powertrain. They are impressed by the Model S/X ludicrous mode drivetrain. They seem to be very appropriately unimpressed with the Model 3's powertrain.
 

Eclectic

Member
Nov 8, 2014
773
920
Montana
The review was to an extent less than useful for buyers.

The biggest consumer for EVs is the coastal regions of California, and 28°F testing results are silly for us.

Even for the rest of the country, while cold weather EV performance is important to know, it does not reflect the majority of driving.

It would be testing modern sports car with Summer Only tires in the snow. Interesting info, but not helpful for making decisions.

But Tesla's marketing team is sort of to blame. They had cars that could be tested in the summer and fall, and even in California. It was their choice to only allow very limited press testing on the cars. The winter testing conditions might have even been poke at Tesla since the magazine admits they know winter testing is hard on EVs.

I don't disagree that coastal CA is the largest market right now, but Tesla's plans are to have the Model 3 be the car for all of America. As such, you have to take into account that quite a bit of the country outside of California has cold weather for a good part of the year. If you're admitting that Tesla is always going to be a company with products consumed primarily by coastal Californians, fair enough.

I doubt that coastal California can provide Tesla with 500,000 car sales every year. So C/D's criticisms are very appropriate.
 

sreams

Member
Nov 7, 2017
732
1,256
Sacramento, CA
Appropriately impressed? They gave an objective review of the powertrain. They are impressed by the Model S/X ludicrous mode drivetrain. They seem to be very appropriately unimpressed with the Model 3's powertrain.

If a drivetrain is only impressive to C&D if it results in the fastest accelerating production car in the world, then I believe they have a *very* narrow view.
 
Jun 2, 2016
15
50
Minneapolis
@Brian Anderson, C&D did vote the Model S to their 10 Best I believe in 2015, FWIW.
Good point. Also, Aaron Robinson (editor based in CA) owns or owned an iMEV of all things. Wrote once about it that I can recall. It isn't all negative, but I have grown tired of the ongoing glorification of ICE-produced HP, coupled with no recognition of the transformation that needs to happen in transportation ASAP. Being an engineer, I used to see C&D as a great, in-depth source of the best of automotive tech, but you can't claim that anymore without covering batteries, electric motors, and power electronics. I get that it is too far of a stretch as yet for C&D, but my patience is at an end. I will miss John Phillips and Ezra Dyer though.
 
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McRat

Well-Known Member
Jan 20, 2016
5,771
5,414
LA
Being in Minnesota, this has been one of the plusses for me with C&D. They get snow and potholes (although I guess you have the latter in CA also). As with long range in general, cold weather is a special use case. I drove an i3 BEV for 2 years, summer and winter, here. Range dropped to <50 mi / charge on coldest days, but was still enough for my daily commute. Car only got >40 mi from my house once in those two years and yet, fulfilled all my needs. (We also own ICE cars.) Model 3 will serve all needs except towing, for which we'll hang on to a RAV4 until Model Y or whatever is available. Not buying any more ICE.

The problem is the numbers in the test can't be compared to other EVs. We already know people are trapping 103.x mph in the quarter in the winter, so the 101mph shows it was lagging. Lateral g force is also affected, as is braking distance. And of course range.

Folk reading that review might misunderstand by skimming the article and see a 200 mile range. Some of us want a third party number of range at 75 mph in average weather. Because 200 miles today isn't blowing wind up anybody's skirt. Can I go 250mi at 75 mph, and not stop for recharging?
 
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