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Do You Miss Your Model S?

⚡️ELECTROMAN⚡️

SS of 96 and falling
Jul 15, 2016
2,870
5,432
Pacific Northwest
I'm looking for the opinions of people who went from a newer Model S (post refreshed front end) to driving an M3.

Last week I had a 24hr test drive with a Dual Motor Model 3. I was thinking it would be a good time to trade in my almost three year old MS60 with AP2.0 hardware, for the latest and greatest. I thought it would be a no brainer, but after getting back in my Model S the next day, I felt like I really liked my old Model S better than the brand new M3. The Model 3 looks a lot better on paper with it's AWD, one second quicker 0-60 time, 100 more miles of range(although I could unlock my battery and get some more range for $2000), MCU2, etc...

I like the Model S interior a lot better, but I kind of prefer the exterior styling of the Model 3 better (maybe because it's new and different). It has really grown on me. I bought my S after the Model 3 reveal, partly because I didn't like the way the 3 looked on screen.

I think the Model S handles really well for such a big car and I don't see a significant advantage to the zippy Model 3 handling. I can't really have a whole lot of fun with either one without breaking the law and/or driving recklessly.

I like the seats in my Model S better. The seats in the M3 just seemed too soft and pillowy and my back didn't feel as well supported.

No HEPA filter. Definitely noticed car exhaust smells that I no longer smell with the MS HEPA filter. Maybe there is an aftermarket solution for that.

I'm just a bit torn on what to do. I'm thinking I will list my car on Craigslist and see if I can get close to enough money for it, to buy a new Dual Motor Model 3.
 

tvad

Member
Jun 30, 2019
979
1,053
California
Having driven both, and owning a Model 3, I can well understand your preference for the Model S. Perhaps shop for a certified pre-owned S with better range?
 

mswlogo

Well-Known Member
Aug 27, 2018
6,157
5,317
MA, NH
I was loaned a D85 Model S while my cracked roof on my Model 3 was being fixed.

I immediately liked the Model S. Never drove one before.

I just switched from a Performance (Stealth) Model 3 to a Model X LR (Non-P). I would have preferred the S (both Money and Styling), but part of the justification is that the replacement vehicle must tow (in order to get rid of my not so inexpensive, gas guzzling Jeep Summit that had the towing chores).

No regrets.

You need to be careful. I buy pretty high end audio equipment. I'm pretty hooked on Meridian equipment (very expensive). I had a lot of other high end systems before I settled on Meridian (I probably have $60K in Meridian invested). There are Speaker and Amp setups that "DEMO" better (no question). But I can listen all day with my Meridian because it's properly balanced. Where the other systems you can only take for so long before your ears need a break.

The Model 3 "DEMO's" well. But for the long haul, daily driver, I'd rather have a more "plushy" Model S or X.

I think the Model S is still the sharpest looking Tesla, I so wish it officially towed what the X can. The Model 3 looks great at all angles until you come around the front.
 

vickh

Active Member
Dec 16, 2018
3,149
709
az
I agree and it was a tough choice for me between a CPO MS and M3, but price won out at the end. I also agree Model 3 looks great at all angles until you come around the front. I'm going to put a front plate to break the monotony for that and see if it helps.

RE: HEPA filter. I'm curious about that too. I want bioweapon protection as well it's a safety thing . I thought Elon said safety was standard ;)
 

Firewired

Member
May 23, 2013
707
379
San Antonio
I guess it is what you use it for. I am on my 4th and 5th Teslas, and had a Model S P100D before getting my current P3D. The Model S always felt bigger than I would have liked. I do think the seats in the S and X are more comfortable, and I would have liked the 3 to have bio defense mode on the AC, and rear hatch trunk. I am glad to have gotten rid of the retracting door handles, which broke on me several times. I think the quality of the center screen is also higher resolution, I found that re-occuring yellow band on the edge of the S's screen to be annoying. For spirited driving I find the handling on the 3 much superior, with better overall brake performance. I think the visibility is also improved, as well as I think the headlights are more effective, sound system is better, and effectiveness of the AC overall is greatly improved. For me the biggest trade in my day to day is when I have wanted to carry bigger items. I am always limited by the trunk opening.
 

tvad

Member
Jun 30, 2019
979
1,053
California
Another data point...insurance premiums for the Model S are significantly higher than the Model 3. Consider asking your insurance broker for apple-to-apples quotes on both.
 
  • Informative
Reactions: vickh

vickh

Active Member
Dec 16, 2018
3,149
709
az
Another data point...insurance premiums for the Model S are significantly higher than the Model 3. Consider asking your insurance broker for apple-to-apples quotes on both.

It was significantly higher for me with S vs 3 with USAA. I hope that doesn't change with more crash data, but I think it's related to MSRP
 

MorrisonHiker

Well-Known Member
Mar 8, 2015
10,240
9,958
Colorado
I'm looking for the opinions of people who went from a newer Model S (post refreshed front end) to driving an M3.

Last week I had a 24hr test drive with a Dual Motor Model 3. I was thinking it would be a good time to trade in my almost three year old MS60 with AP2.0 hardware, for the latest and greatest. I thought it would be a no brainer, but after getting back in my Model S the next day, I felt like I really liked my old Model S better than the brand new M3. The Model 3 looks a lot better on paper with it's AWD, one second quicker 0-60 time, 100 more miles of range(although I could unlock my battery and get some more range for $2000), MCU2, etc...

I like the Model S interior a lot better, but I kind of prefer the exterior styling of the Model 3 better (maybe because it's new and different). It has really grown on me. I bought my S after the Model 3 reveal, partly because I didn't like the way the 3 looked on screen.

I think the Model S handles really well for such a big car and I don't see a significant advantage to the zippy Model 3 handling. I can't really have a whole lot of fun with either one without breaking the law and/or driving recklessly.

I like the seats in my Model S better. The seats in the M3 just seemed too soft and pillowy and my back didn't feel as well supported.

No HEPA filter. Definitely noticed car exhaust smells that I no longer smell with the MS HEPA filter. Maybe there is an aftermarket solution for that.

I'm just a bit torn on what to do. I'm thinking I will list my car on Craigslist and see if I can get close to enough money for it, to buy a new Dual Motor Model 3.
If you spend the $2000 to upgrade to 75 kWh, wait a few weeks/months and then upgrade from AP2 to AP3 (depends on if you have FSD) and upgrade MCU1 to MCU2 ($2500+, supposedly), you could almost bring the S up to an early 2019 (pre-Raven) equivalent.
 

Ptheven

Member
Mar 9, 2019
202
345
Kellyfornya
I didn't own a Model S but I've done about 6,000 miles of driving in one. I think the Model 3 is an overall better car, even if they were the same price (at least for my life).
 

DanH

Member
Dec 23, 2017
174
220
CA
Had a model s loaner for 2 weeks. It’s a nice car, but I like the 3 much better. The 3 is much more fun to drive. The interior felt more spacious and less cluttered.
 

⚡️ELECTROMAN⚡️

SS of 96 and falling
Jul 15, 2016
2,870
5,432
Pacific Northwest
Another data point...insurance premiums for the Model S are significantly higher than the Model 3. Consider asking your insurance broker for apple-to-apples quotes on both.
I have Progressive. I was surprised when they quoted me a slightly higher rate for the new M3 versus my current MS. It's probably time to shop around for insurance again.
 
  • Like
Reactions: MattUNI

Occar

Member
Jun 20, 2019
156
259
TN
Not in the slightest. I had a model S for 3 years before the 3 and the 3 is just a better car that also happens to be a lot cheaper.
 

Pgetzen

Member
Jan 28, 2018
72
27
Apex, NC
I own a 2017 Model S 75, gave that to my wife and bought a 2018 Model 3 Performance. They are two very different cars, so i get the opinions out there on them. I like the quickness of the 3, the better handling, and the extended range. But when I get in the S, it feels so much more like a luxury car. I think if I had to choose, I’d probably stick with the 3, mostly due to range, but the S is a very, very nice car.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ChadS

RB88

Member
Mar 18, 2019
179
139
Seattle, WA
Never owned a S but had a loaner recently while my 3 was in service for rattles (spoiler alert: SC claimed they fixed the rattles but they’re all still there).

S felt a lot more heavy/bulky (no duh, it’s a bigger car) and the interior simultaneously seemed more luxe but also more dated (I guess you get used to the minimalism of the 3 and it makes more cluttered cars seem old!). But jamming the accelerator was fun (possibly even more fun because it’s more surprising that a fat car like that can go 0-60 so fast!).

personally still happy with my 3 after the experience (was so glad to come back to it, partially because I have a very tight parking spot and the S was difficult to get in there!) but can see the appeal.
 

ChadS

Last tank of gas: March 2009
Jul 16, 2009
3,361
2,770
Redmond, WA
I had a Model S for 2 years, and my wife had a Model S for 5 years. I've had a Model 3 for about a year and a half. They are both great cars, but there are definitely differences.

I prefer the 3 for local commuter/errand type duties. Smaller, cheaper, more efficient, more lively handling (the handling is not a big deal to the OP; but it is to me). Given that my wife has an X so I can get a Tesla with space when I need it (which seems to be a lot lately, hmm), the 3 makes more sense for me now.

I prefer the S for longer drives (especially road trips), and when I have a bunch of stuff to carry. Better ride, quieter, twice the cargo space and it's easier to access, better AP controls, more info on the screens, more range, quicker, bio-weapon filter, better warranty. Better looking too. If my wife did not have an X, I would wish I still had an S. Actually, I probably wouldn't have sold the S to get a 3 if it was to be our only Tesla.

I wrote a lot more about the differences between the cars HERE.
 
Last edited:

⚡️ELECTROMAN⚡️

SS of 96 and falling
Jul 15, 2016
2,870
5,432
Pacific Northwest
I didn't own a Model S but I've done about 6,000 miles of driving in one. I think the Model 3 is an overall better car, even if they were the same price (at least for my life).
Was it a newer MS? Did it have an all black dash or a two tone dash? I'm not a big fan of the M3 dash and the protruding touch screen, but I think I like it better than the MS dashes with tan, cream, or gray interiors. I also don't like the MS interiors with the lighter wood trims.
 

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