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Car and Driver Model 3 Test - Not Great

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cella

Member
Aug 17, 2017
115
153
San Jose, CA
I used the 330i because C&D directly referenced it. The better comparison is the 330e which the Model 3 thoroughly trounces especially with price factored in - the C&D as tested 330e was $62,345. Remember, we are comparing without any tax incentives too.
For one, the base price of the 330e is substantially lower than the Model 3's. And why would it be a better comparison? The mass market that Tesla needs to address isn't on an EV "mission" like many Tesla fans. They need to be convinced on a cost/benefit basis. I guarantee you when regular car buyers step out of their Lexus, BMW or Merc and into a Model 3 in its current form, the first impression of the interior won't be good in most cases. In this and a few other aspects Tesla need to step up their game if they want to seriously compete in the mass market.
Comparing against the 340i... the sound levels as tested by C&D is almost identical. The Model 3 is slightly quieter than the 340i. The 340i is quicker with 0-60 at 4.8 versus 5.1 and it is definitely faster at the 1/4 mile. But again, the Tesla was tested at substantially lower temperatures. Also note the passing times... and we really don't even talk about energy efficiency. The C&D as tested price on the 340i was $58,420, but it doesn't have anything like EAP on it.
I don't know what C&D measured, but I do know from my own subjective experience that the Model 3 was substantially louder on the freeway than e.g. our Audi. My impression was that it has very little isolation from road and environmental noises.

Regarding the EAP, most of the other luxury cars have ACC, lane keep assist, traffic jam assist etc. which do most of what EAP currently does. Another area where Tesla can't rest on their laurels but need to work harder and execute on their promises.
The Model 3 goes head to head against the best ICE vehicles, no apology needed.
And at it's current price it needs to.
Therefore, you can't just say a BMW 3 series with a Tesla drivetrain. Part of the whole issue is the logistical and technological advances necessary to make the Model 3 happen at all. And BMW doesn't have what it takes currently to make a Model 3 and launch it.
This kind of thinking leads to complacency and is dangerous. I am very certain that BMW and several of the other big car makers are easily capable of making a car like the Model 3. It's just not profitable enough for them yet to put a lot of energy into it.
 

JonathanD

Member
Apr 21, 2014
438
543
OC, CA
This kind of thinking leads to complacency and is dangerous. I am very certain that BMW and several of the other big car makers are easily capable of making a car like the Model 3. It's just not profitable enough for them yet to put a lot of energy into it.

They also do not yet have the infrastructure for battery production or for customer charging. Tesla has a good head start, it remains to be seen if it can fully take advantage of it.
 

Eclectic

Member
Nov 8, 2014
792
1,404
Montana
Because I'm a Tesla enthusiast and have been since 2006. This is usually what brings someone to a forum dedicated to something specific like a car brand. The thing that makes this one different is the mission, something that has the potential to dramatically change the lives of many.

Your turn.

Is there some sort of litmus test to being a member of this forum?
 
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Part of the whole issue is the logistical and technological advances necessary to make the Model 3 happen at all. And BMW doesn't have what it takes currently to make a Model 3 and launch it.

I hate to burst your bubble, but Tesla has no proprietary EV technology or manufacturing capability that gives it any advantange over the likes of BMW. The Tesla drivetrain is not what sets Tesla apart. It’s tolerance for losing money, lower quality and lack of ICE baggage are what set Tesla apart, enabling them to be first mover and to develop a unique customer experience. Really that’s what it boils down to.
 
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xav-

Active Member
May 26, 2016
1,187
982
Orange County CA
Sounds like that once again we see some pretty bad numbers on the 18 inch wheels. Edmunds a month ago reported 60 to 0 braking in 133 feet, which is more than a 2017 Altima (!).

Following that review from Edmunds, I called Tesla and requested that the standard wheels that I had initially ordered be changed to the sport wheels.
 

sreams

Member
Nov 7, 2017
735
1,307
Sacramento, CA
Well if you have to drive the car and you can not trust it then how is it making you safer? So explain what facts you have that proves it does make you safer

All I see is you pointing out someone who misused AP as an example of it not being safe. Show me one example where an attentive driver using AP got into a fatal accident.

The point of AP is not to drive the car for you. It's to supplement your reaction time and give you an extra set of "eyes" to help avoid accidents.
 
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sreams

Member
Nov 7, 2017
735
1,307
Sacramento, CA
Sounds like that once again we see some pretty bad numbers on the 18 inch wheels. Edmunds a month ago reported 60 to 0 braking in 133 feet, which is more than a 2017 Altima (!).

Following that review from Edmunds, I called Tesla and requested that the standard wheels that I had initially ordered be changed to the sport wheels.

The wheels have nothing to do with any difference in braking distance. It's tires. Have a tire shop swap them out (and sell the old ones as new) if they are indeed that bad.
 
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voip-ninja

Give me some sugar baby
Mar 15, 2012
4,127
5,243
Colorado
I’m going to have to at least sit in the model 3 if not drive it before I can make a decision.

I sat in the Audi A5 Sportback this weekend and the interior is NICE. Really really nice. Gorgeous materials throughout and something like 10 interior leather and trim combinations. Ten exterior color choices, two are free and the rest are $575 not $1000. Heated seats are standard, the cold weather package adds a heated steering wheel. Ventilated cooled seats are available for warm climates.

Range on a full tank of gas is about 400 miles wether it is 90 degrees outside or -10. Time to refuel, 5 minutes.

AWD is standard and the $50,000 trim version has a glass cockpit and hud that is to die for. Top down parking view and warning sensors for passengers who open their doors when there is traffic. The lift back is motorized and can be activated if your hands are full just by kicking your foot under the rear bumper.

Tesla has a lot going for it with the electric drivetrain but Audi is tempting me mightily.
 
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Gen3Joe

Member
Mar 19, 2016
224
257
United States
This why I pay no attention to Car and Driver when it comes to EVs. They are willfully ignorant at best. This is a direct quote from their review of the 2018 Nissan Leaf:
"...but a full charge from a typical 120-volt wall outlet will take 35 hours."

This is about as useful as saying it will take 3 hours to fill a tank of gas through a McDonalds straw for an ICE car. Nobody charges their EV on 120 volt outlets yet they state it is "typical".
 
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techmaven

Active Member
Feb 27, 2013
3,618
9,768
I hate to burst your bubble, but Tesla has no proprietary EV technology or manufacturing capability that gives it any advatange over the likes of BMW. The Tesla drivetrain is not what sets Tesla apart. It’s tolerance for losing money, lower quality and lack of ICE baggage are what set Tesla apart, enabling them to be first mover and to develop a unique customer experience. Really that’s what it boils down to.

Did BMW cultivate 16+GWh of cell production? No? Are they using the highest specific energy cells? No? The cheapest cells on a $/KWh basis? No? How many GWh of cells can BMW buy on the open market? And BMW is notorious for terrible longevity with high maintenance costs. The BMW i3’s drive train reliability has been sketchy, so glass houses and all. The inability for BMW to take the necessary risks to lead in battery electric vehicles is part of the big problem for them. Look at what they offer for $50-60k in battery electric vehicles and compare against the Model 3. I didn’t even bother comparing the embarrassment that is the BMW i3s that starts at $47,650 against the $49,000 Model 3.

Again, BMW cannot for a myriad of reasons do what Tesla has done and continues to do.
 

Gen3Joe

Member
Mar 19, 2016
224
257
United States
  • Did BMW cultivate 16+GWh of cell production? No? Are they using the highest specific energy cells? No? The cheapest cells on a $/KWh basis? No? How many GWh of cells can BMW buy on the open market? And BMW is notorious for terrible longevity with high maintenance costs. The BMW i3’s drive train reliability has been sketchy, so glass houses and all. The inability for BMW to take the necessary risks to lead in battery electric vehicles is part of the big problem for them. Look at what they offer for $50-60k in battery electric vehicles and compare against the Model 3. I didn’t even bother comparing the embarrassment that is the BMW i3s that starts at $47,650 against the $49,000 Model 3.

    Again, BMW cannot for a myriad of reasons do what Tesla has done and continues to do.

    But what about the leather stitching, fancy buttons and aluminum trim everywhere? Oh and german engineering and such. Isn't that worth getting half the car for the same price?
 

RayK

Active Member
Apr 5, 2016
2,314
2,322
San Jose, CA
Here in CA, there's an incentive being offered by PG&E (in NorCal) and Southern CA Edison that offers $10,000 discount off the best negotiated price of a BMW i3 or i3 REx. Offer ends May 31, 2018. This is in addition to the normal Federal tax credit of $7500 and CA EV rebate of $2500. So, a total of $20K off.

While I would never think of buying an i3 (had one as a loaner on a long weekend), you're no longer talking apples to apples at these prices.

Oh, and new i3 owners are being offered free charging for 2 years at EVgo stations.
 
Did BMW cultivate 16+GWh of cell production? No? Are they using the highest specific energy cells? No? The cheapest cells on a $/KWh basis? No? How many GWh of cells can BMW buy on the open market? And BMW is notorious for terrible longevity with high maintenance costs. The BMW i3’s drive train reliability has been sketchy, so glass houses and all. The inability for BMW to take the necessary risks to lead in battery electric vehicles is part of the big problem for them. Look at what they offer for $50-60k in battery electric vehicles and compare against the Model 3. I didn’t even bother comparing the embarrassment that is the BMW i3s that starts at $47,650 against the $49,000 Model 3.

These individual data points and opinions and assumptions don't add-up to Tesla having an advantage in drivetrain or manufacturing technology. Cost/kwh is irrelevant if its still money-losing. Battery production is a non-issue (BMW has already ramped to selling hundreds of thousands of electrified vehicles a year). BMW's reliability is high above the average and above Teslas, and BMW can achieve that reliability in huge volumes. Lastly, current models are not future models. Tesla needs to compete against the next generation of models like the i-Pace, iX3, Mini Electric, etc. Fully baked, high quality, high volume, mass-market vehicles.

I'm not arguing that Tesla will fail, but they won't succeed based on being better at designing drivetrains and assembling automobiles. Tesla knows this. Tesla's biggest advantages are its unique customer experience, the brand and their unburdened business model.
 
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All I see is you pointing out someone who misused AP as an example of it not being safe. Show me one example where an attentive driver using AP got into a fatal accident.

The point of AP is not to drive the car for you. It's to supplement your reaction time and give you an extra set of "eyes" to help avoid accidents.

What exactly is these extra set of eyes seeing certainly not semi’s, fire trucks, or concrete barriers. So then AP is no different then the other driver assistant programs on other manufactures cars.
 
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