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Cross Country in Model 3?

Uncle Paul

Well-Known Member
Nov 1, 2013
6,235
6,736
Canyon Lake,CA
To give the OP some comfort he can enter his destination into his dash screen. It will calculate a proposed route and list all the supercharger stops along the way. Will tell him how long it might take as well. Along the way, new calculations will be made in real time. He may choose to skip a charger here and there, and charge longer at the next one. Can set up meal stops when convenient and do shorter, bottom of the battery charges when wanting to make better time.

Of course a Long Range model is a better long distance cruiser. Charges faster and can run longer between charges, but OP saved a considerable amount of $ with his decision. These are the times when the smaller battery becomes a less convenient choice.
 

smartypnz

Supporting Member
Jan 23, 2013
2,038
2,175
Monterey Peninsula
At times, going long distances in our LR/RWD, we find ourselves stopping more frequently than we'd prefer because the Superchargers are closer together than we'd like, but not so close together we can skip every-other one, especially when you get away from major cities and out onto rural Freeways.

Yeah, we've noticed that also as they build more Superchargers. But we found that maybe we do stop more often - but we don't have to charge as much (long). The Tesla charges faster at low mileage level - so that makes up for the extra, but shorter, stops.

And the bonus is that after 140-160 miles (over 2 hours) one of us (not pointing fingers) needs to stop anyway.
 
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augkuo

Member
Apr 24, 2011
985
2,926
Berkeley
We've gone as far as New Orleans LA from Berkeley CA and back but did some side trips out in the boondocks (ie Big Bend National Park) where we needed to charge at an RV park. Normally we'd stop every two hours to pee, etc. (100-150 miles) at a supercharger so no range anxiety there. It will take longer than a gas car because of the wait to charge the car but maybe your dogs will be happier to stretch their legs and pee too ;) We've sat in the car seats for over 36 hours (no back aches!) apart from breaks since we'd nap while charging and then keep going.

The best supercharger locations are ones next to a truck stop since they're usually open 24 hours and have bathrooms and food available (aside from Tesla lounges like the Kettleman SC). The worst locations are ones at malls since during the day they may all be full or then at night, the mall is shut down and no bathrooms/food is available. I use the Superchargers for Tesla app from Ndili technologies to give me more intel about the supercharger location and nearly up-to-date information about charge speeds, etc. submitted by previous users.
 

cstork

Supporting Member
Oct 29, 2018
137
161
Colorado
Isn't it true that many SR+ vehicles were shipped with the full 80KwH batteries? These are limited to 240 miles only by software. This means that they will charge faster and you can charge them to 95% with greater comfort. With a LR-M3, you generally only charge to 80-90% at a SC anyway and go about 200 miles between SC stops.
 
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Nvbob

Roadster 1256
May 6, 2009
381
180
Just east of Lake Tahoe, Ca.
Last March we drove from Carson City to southern Florida to visit my dad, about 6100 miles round trip. We planned out the trip, used the supercharger network, and had a ball.

Enjoy the car and the trip!
 

M3BlueGeorgia

Active Member
Dec 10, 2018
1,345
1,075
Atlanta, GA
Isn't it true that many SR+ vehicles were shipped with the full 80KwH batteries? These are limited to 240 miles only by software. This means that they will charge faster and you can charge them to 95% with greater comfort. With a LR-M3, you generally only charge to 80-90% at a SC anyway and go about 200 miles between SC stops.

There's zero evidence of this, and the lower weight of the SR+ (compared to LR/RWD) would prevent this being the case.

The SR is, however, a software locked variant of the SR+.
 

roblab

Active Member
Jul 15, 2008
3,392
2,441
Angwin (Napa Valley) CA
That's a long trip, one that taking the model 3 will add maybe a day to just for charging stops. If you're ok with that, I wouldn't do it in the toyota - having even basic autopilot makes these kinds of drives much better.

I cannot agree that a charge stop in the middle of the day will add "maybe a day". Driving 250 miles takes 3-4 hours and then there's lunch, which, if you're smart, you do while you're charging. Then another 3-4 hours and supper. Then maybe a few more hours to the motel, which, if you did your homework, has chargers.

The superchargers take maybe 30-40 minutes during which the doggies play, and the motel charges overnight. Unless one plans to drive 24 hours a day, there's not much time lost.

Our first Tesla, Model S, went to Canada (from San Francisco) the week after we bought it, and there were NO Superchargers anywhere.

We had a grand time pulling into RV parks at noon and taking a walk into town while we waited. Now there is a SpC in that town. Times have changed. But you can still have a great trip, and it's hard to say any of it is wasted, and harder still to say that charging would add a day when it hardly adds an hour. Unless you want it to.
 

roblab

Active Member
Jul 15, 2008
3,392
2,441
Angwin (Napa Valley) CA
Sight seeing remote locations will need extra planning with the SR+, or it may be impossible all together if supercharger or destination/3rd party chargers locations aren't ideal.

Sight-seeing locations nearly always have RV outlets within a few miles, at least in my experience. My google maps will show me where RV campsites are, and often one can charge for free. I even had a camper unplug his motor home so I could charge.
 

sduck

Mr. Duck
Nov 6, 2017
1,426
1,422
Nashville TN
I cannot agree that a charge stop in the middle of the day will add "maybe a day". Driving 250 miles takes 3-4 hours and then there's lunch, which,
You misunderstand me, or I wasn't clear. I meant that over the course of the WHOLE TRIP (the OP's east to west coast extravaganza, which is a multi-day trip to begin with) the amount of time at the multiple charging stops involved could add up to approximately another day, or at least add on significantly. Of course, I haven't sat down with ABRP and done the actual math on this, but do know from experience that charging stops do add up on longer trips, making them quite a bit longer than ICE based trips.
 

cOoTeR

Member
Aug 31, 2019
279
343
Arizona
About 2 weeks ago my wife son and I returned from a trip to Ohio. The drive was just shy of 2,000 miles each way (AZ-OH). We took my Model 3 Performance. I used a better route planner and set my charger arrival state of charge to 15%. What I noticed with the cars planned route it seemed like it's priority was less stops with more time spent charging. A better route planner seemed to prioritize less time spent charging but would stop a few more times. I'd normally run about 5mph over the speed limit and normally arrived at the next supercharger with about 10%. When my wife drove we'd normally arrive about 17%. As many others have suggested we just took breaks/ walks and ate at the stops.

We have always done the drive in one shot stopping only for gas bathroom and food. Our best time for the drive straight thru in the past was 32 hours, Google maps estimates 27 hours of driving. That 32 hours included stops for food drinks gas and traffic. We did the trip in 37 hours this trip.

I prefer the Tesla if driving. But you might want to check out the price of plane tickets right now.
 
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DJVoorhees

Member
Jun 16, 2019
236
137
New Jersey
Seriously wrong.

The Supercharger network seems setup the accommodate 240 EPA mile range Model S variants, so the SR+ should work well.

At times, going long distances in our LR/RWD, we find ourselves stopping more frequently than we'd prefer because the Superchargers are closer together than we'd like, but not so close together we can skip every-other one, especially when you get away from major cities and out onto rural Freeways.



That's just your opinion and it appears to be largely wrong. Tesla's own planner will only use a Model 3 LR car for it's routing, you cant even chose a SR or SR+ car to model with, that's not a good sign.

I've had my car long enough to know that in anything less than perfect conditions, you will be lucky to get 170-190 miles highway travel from 100% SR+ charge. At 100% my car shows only 210-220 miles now and I only have 8500 miles.

Using Teslas supercharger planner - there are several stops 170-250 miles apart once you get out of the Tristate area.

Remember - the OP asked for opinions, my opinion is it would be sketchy at best, at worst not possible.


From Tesla's trip planner -

Routing, charge times and mileage assumes a Long Range and that trips begin with a full charge. Assumptions are also made for factors like weather, climate control and driving style. Real world results may vary.

  1. Bridgewater Township, NJ 08807, USA
  2. Carlisle, PA20 min charge
  3. Somerset, PA40 min charge
  4. Cambridge, OH45 min charge
  5. Dayton, OH55 min charge
  6. Terre Haute, IN60 min charge
  7. Mehlville, MO25 min charge
  8. Rolla, MO30 min charge
  9. Springfield, MO55 min charge
  10. Catoosa, OK35 min charge
  11. Oklahoma City, OK50 min charge
  12. Shamrock, TX30 min charge
  13. Amarillo, TX45 min charge
  14. Santa Rosa, NM30 min charge
  15. Albuquerque, NM40 min charge
  16. Gallup, NM20 min charge
  17. Holbrook, AZ55 min charge
  18. Buckeye, AZ50 min charge
  19. Yuma, AZ50 min charge
  20. San Diego, CA, USA
    Duration: 53 h 28 min (2,746 mi)
 

M3BlueGeorgia

Active Member
Dec 10, 2018
1,345
1,075
Atlanta, GA
That's just your opinion and it appears to be largely wrong. Tesla's own planner will only use a Model 3 LR car for it's routing, you cant even chose a SR or SR+ car to model with, that's not a good sign.

...SNIP..

Since July 2018 we have put almost 45,000 miles on the car. So my comment was made from real and substantial experience.

Don't know why you are bothering with Tesla's route planner on their website. That's a marketing device, not a usable tool. Leaves me to suspect you've never done a serious road trip on a Tesla Model 3.

Best way to plan a route is using abetterrouteplanner.com, which does support the SR+.

Our trips, from Metro Atlanta, include:
- South Florida
- Savannah, GA
- New York State
- Northern Colorado
- Metro Chicago
- SW Missouri
 
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I<3URANUS

Member
Dec 9, 2019
122
116
Dallas
Since July 2018 we have put almost 45,000 miles on the car. So my comment was made from real and substantial experience.

Don't know why you are bothering with Tesla's route planner on their website. That's a marketing device, not a usable tool. Leaves me to suspect you've never done a serious road trip on a Tesla Model 3.

Best way to plan a route is using abetterrouteplanner.com, which does support the SR+.

Our trips, from Metro Atlanta, include:
- South Florida
- Savannah, GA
- New York State
- Northern Colorado
- Metro Chicago
- SW Missouri


Eh, I made a 600mi trip in my sr+ earlier in the year. At first, I was nervous but once I made my second charging stop, I knew the car was smart enough that I didn't have to put too much effort into it.

Before making my trip is use abrp to plot out various trips I had made in the past, etc.

It's a waste of time. I just get in and go now.
 

user212_nr

Active Member
Aug 26, 2019
1,407
739
US
Pros:
1) Less cabin noise
2) Autopilot
3) Less cabin vibration
4) Lower cost of trip
5) Less fatigue (due to autopilot)
6) Tesla is stable and vibration free at higher speeds (how is your 4runner?)

Cons:
1) Trip will take longer (does this matter?)
2) On some parts of the journey, you will need to drive below 70mph in order to reach your destination
3) On some parts of the journey you will need to drive a certain speed (70-75 or less) to optimize your charge times
4) There is some extra planning involved both before and during your tip
5) You will have some anxiety watching your battery percentage go down low and being concerned about getting stranded (gets better with experience)
6) Getting stranded in the wrong place could be costly in time/money.

I've done long trips in a SUV, and they are absolutely brutal. They vibrate severely at 80 mph and aren't are noisy and uncomfortable at most speeds.

You'd think it would be nice to have the breaks ever 2 hours, but there is so little fatigue that you want to keep driving. On a 1,000 mile trip with an ICE car, I drank about 2-5 gallons of water. With the Model 3, didn't even drink 1 gallon. No need to drink water while sitting in a chair doing nothing.

I'm guessing that you are retired (or a teacher, etc) since you are driving to California, so take your time and drive slow when needed and you will be fine.
 
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Andy7

Member
Dec 16, 2019
63
36
NJ
Some one alluded to the possibility of problems with an 18 year old car and I think that is a big concern. Another problem is that the 2002 will have many fewer safety devices to protect you. Also, I am not sure how well air bags do after sitting in a vehicle for 18 years. You can't test them and replacing them is very expensive, I believe. The Tesla has more of them, too.

I've only had my 3 since December, but I would take it on this trip! (We don't have dogs). I've actually thought about it, since our son and his family are in LA, but my wife is not crazy about the idea. Good luck.
 
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Fadiawesome

Member
Sep 8, 2019
152
90
IDAHO
While you will take longer on the trip, I feel lie the SR+ will be more enjoyable, at least it was for me. I recently took a 2500 mile road trip and that was the best. I could've done it in my old Nissan, and saved a couple of hours, but I would've been more fatigued. I don't use autopilot, but I still was less fatigued simply due to the car being more comfortable and more fun to drive, and it has more safety features. Also, tacc works like a charm. Most people need to take a break about every 2-3 hours, which is doable based on the sr+'s battery.
Also, if you fold the rear seats down, throw a blanket on top of them, your dogs will have more room while also protecting your seats.
 

Wennfred

Supporting Member
Apr 4, 2019
2,927
1,831
San Diego
My wife and I will be going to SoCal this summer from NJ and are seriously considering driving rather than flying, especially since we could then bring our 2 dogs. The question is, should I take my new Model 3 SR+ or take my trusty old 2002 4Runner that has already made the trip before. I know that it is completely possible to take the Tesla, but practicality wise...?
Pros: Comfort, novelty...
Cons: Increased travel time, range anxiety when going off path (to sight see), space (2 people, 2 dogs, and stuff).

I am looking for advice from people with personal experience, should I just play it safe and take the good ole Toyota?
Look up on YouTube “Out of Spec Motoring” he does a lot of trips cross country and just completed one with wife and 2 large dogs.

Use ABRP or your Tesla Nav and select a point in California and it will show you all of your charge spots. I would definitely do a road trip from San Diego Ca to Key West Fl. in my SR+

I have a CHAdeMO adapter so I can charge at other stations if I need too.

Note: whatever miles you charge up too, minus 40 miles for that leg of your trip.

Fred
 
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