TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

Gen 3: "A strong family resemblance [to the Model S]"

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by ipdamages, Jun 6, 2013.

  1. ipdamages

    ipdamages Roadster Sports 835 & 972

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2011
    Messages:
    308
    Location:
    Southern California
    In the annual meeting earlier this week Elon also said that that the Gen 3 will be "in a lot of ways a smaller version of the Model S, at half the price."
    2013 Shareholder Meeting | Tesla Motors at 31:30-31:45

    There was a direct question asked at 54:30, to which Elon provided the following answer (excerpts):

    "So, with the third generation vehicle, we expect it to be 'in family' with the Model S, so you'll see, like, a sort of strong family resemblance."

    "But with that third generation, we want to try to think of some interesting things we can do that go beyond simply scaling down the Model S and scaling up volume. We haven't thought of anything really big right now."

    "If we get lucky, maybe we can incorporate some of the auto-pilot or self-driving elements into that vehicle."


    With this and the comments about comparisons to the 3-series and A4, I think that ideas of a significant departure from the Model S aren't likely to be implemented (e.g., little hatchbacks, substantially different body style...). That isn't to say that different body styles won't be offered (e.g., a shooting brake), but I don't think we are looking at a "fresh sheet of paper" on body style. At the risk of covering the same ground as other threads, what suggestions do we have for the Gen 3 with this in mind?

    For example, as regards body style, I have suggested a little more aggressive curve at the wheels. This is potentially a bit at tension with the aero criterion.

    Looking at the Aston Martin Vanquish, Vantage, and Rapide (top to bottom in the combo-pic below), I view them to be similar in body style, but the Vanquish has a bit more curve around the hips/wheels. The Rapide is more like the Vantage, albeit in a larger, 4-door body.

    aston martins.jpg

    I posit that these three cars are all "in family," but I prefer a Vanquish to the Vantage or Rapide bodies. What do you folks think?

    The main difference I see is that today there is a common body style trend in having the car start low, with a hood that isn't far above the top of the front tire, and rise as you travel to the back of the car the top of the car is close to a foot higher than the top of the tire. Extreme examples of this are seen in the Prius, but it is very common today. Automakers also tend to have the door handles at this angle. Here are a few cars with this look.

    prius cruze c class.jpg

    The Model S has this too, to some extent, though it definitely has more curve to it than the Prius, Cruze, and C Class directly above.

    model s copy.jpg

    So to me, making the Gen 3 more of a Vanquish than a Vantage would be a good thing, and I don't undertand it to be necessary to have the wedge design, without curves at the fenders/wheels, to keep a car's cost down or sell a car to the mass market.

    As regards other things that can be done while maintaining a family resemblance and being recognizable as a Tesla, I view this to really be an exterior question, so I'm not getting into interior questions, though I don't own a Model S, so I'm not sure that I have a basis for suggestions, and I think there are several other places on TMC where people have made suggestions on the interior. I also won't get into the nose cone, as I think there is a pretty clear record on how people feel on that issue.

    So what do you folks think?
     
  2. gregincal

    gregincal Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2012
    Messages:
    2,135
    Location:
    Santa Cruz, CA
    I've always thought that just a shortened Model S (with some tweaks to not compromise rear headroom too much) would look nice. I did this mockup a few months ago:

    Tesla mockup 2.jpg
     
  3. jeff_adams

    jeff_adams Member

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2013
    Messages:
    617
    Location:
    Monterey
    I think that's what they are aiming for. They will likely build a mini X on the same platform.

    I own Nissan Frontier. It looks like a junior version of their Titan model.
     
  4. ipdamages

    ipdamages Roadster Sports 835 & 972

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2011
    Messages:
    308
    Location:
    Southern California
    I like the way you trimmed the front and rear and did a little squeeze on the wheelbase. If the car is to maintain the rear headroom it will have to lose some of the sloping roofline, which is to some not as attractive visually, but obviously more functional. Compromises. But it seems clear that the car is not intended to maximize style at the cost of functionality (e.g., unlike Fisker). That said, I think several people have discussed a coupe/2-door version, which would perhaps slope the roofline more and compromise rear headroom a bit.

    Another small suggestion I have is to go back to the 9-spoke turbine wheels (from the beta) rather than the current 10-spoke turbines. I prefer the more open look of the 9-spokers. Or perhaps some other rim design. Again with the compromises, I suspect that that hurts the aero.

    Beta.jpg Current.jpg
     
  5. FreeOfPge

    FreeOfPge Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2013
    Messages:
    339
    Location:
    CA
    This looks nice, maybe better than the current MS. Would it be too much to ask for an even shorter mock up with the nose practically sitting against the front of the wheels and as suggested by ipdamages, with 9 spoke turbine wheels?
     
  6. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Messages:
    15,262
    I never noticed before that in the white 9-spoke vehicle, the silver and black below the doors isn't present. In fact that whole section is body-colored with no split - the doors are simply "cut out" rather than part of a line going from wheel to wheel. I'm not sure whether I prefer that look or not, just making the observation.

    I can't tell for sure from my desktop picture of the "spendy red" whether it has the same treatment below the doors as the 9-spoke white or not.
     
  7. ipdamages

    ipdamages Roadster Sports 835 & 972

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2011
    Messages:
    308
    Location:
    Southern California
    The red one is the version that is currently sold, so it has the trim below the doors, whereas the white one was the alpha version. BTW - above I wrote that it was the beta, but I was incorrect. The beta was very close to the version ultimately released to the public, with black trim under the doors. Here is the beta release:

    Revealing Model S Beta | Blog | Tesla Motors

    Interestingly, the beta had 10-spoke wheels, but it appears that the spokes were thinner than the version ultimately sold to the public.
     
  8. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Messages:
    15,262
  9. ipdamages

    ipdamages Roadster Sports 835 & 972

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2011
    Messages:
    308
    Location:
    Southern California
    OIC. Thanks for clarifying.

    I have always liked that car, and that photo in particular. That paint job is IMO fantastic. The angle of the photo also makes the car look more like the Vanquish, as I describe above. More curve around the front wheels, such that it even looks like the doors drop a little compared to the hood. And the more open, 9-spoke wheels.
     
  10. igotzzoom

    igotzzoom Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2013
    Messages:
    832
    Location:
    Laguna Hills, CA
    I would be perfectly happy if the Gen-III looked something like this. :biggrin:

     
  11. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2012
    Messages:
    4,337
    Location:
    Maine
    Shrink the Model S but I just want efficient alloys that I can put a reasonably-priced set of Fuel Maxs on. Sell the pretty-boy wheels and low profile tires as an option.
     
  12. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Messages:
    15,262
    My car is female.
     
  13. igotzzoom

    igotzzoom Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2013
    Messages:
    832
    Location:
    Laguna Hills, CA
    I was and am no great fan of the 5-Series Grand Touring, but I think BMW did a much better job on the styling and proportions of the 3 GT. This wouldn't be a bad inspiration for the Gen-III either.

    065217-2014-bmw-3-series-gt-first-look-by-henny-hemmes.3-lg.jpg
     
  14. ipdamages

    ipdamages Roadster Sports 835 & 972

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2011
    Messages:
    308
    Location:
    Southern California
    OK, I figured out how to liquify>distort photos in Photoshop, so here is my proposal. I did not touch the wheels, so the wheelbase is identical. I cut down on back seat headroom a bit, and there is obviously no room for a third row. But the biggest change was to flatten the wedge angle and curvify the fender areas, as well as shrinking the front and back.

    Please pardon my virgin effort on liquifying, but I think the idea comes across. And I put the Vanquish on the bottom for comparison, as well as the overlay against the unmodified Model S. And I shrunk the jpg so it isn't quite as big on the screen, though I can put the full size up if needed.

    So whaddaya think? Family resemblance? If Model S is daddy, I proffer that this is what he looked like when he was in college.

    I suppose the question is whether the Gen 3 is intended to be on the sportier side, like the 3-series, or less sporty/aggressive.
    proposed adjustments 900.jpg
     
  15. igotzzoom

    igotzzoom Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2013
    Messages:
    832
    Location:
    Laguna Hills, CA
    I honestly don't think there's much downside to being a little "sportier" as long as practicality and functionality are not too compromised in the process. I think a great deal of VW Jettas are purchased by people that would buy a 3-Series if they could afford one, but have to settle for the VW for cost reasons. Granted, the Civic and Corolla sell in much larger volumes than the Jetta or 3-Series, for that matter. But as I've stated before, I hope the Gen-III is not just a soulless appliance. I think there is room within the Tesla brand for a more mass-market, commodity-type vehicle, but as an enthusiast, I hope the Gen-III is not it.
     
  16. IceWendigo

    IceWendigo Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2013
    Messages:
    33
    Location:
    Canada
    modelG3.PNG
    heres a trimed rear and front version, with rear window (hatchback) pulled a bit back, and front window elongated a tad forward, and larger headlights
     
  17. igotzzoom

    igotzzoom Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2013
    Messages:
    832
    Location:
    Laguna Hills, CA
    No offense to any of the other efforts on this thread, but gregincal's rendering/proportions is still my favorite. :smile:
     
  18. ipdamages

    ipdamages Roadster Sports 835 & 972

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2011
    Messages:
    308
    Location:
    Southern California
    No offense taken by me. It seems pretty clear that the Gen 3 is going to be a mix of the Model S, the A4, and the 3-series. Here are recent editions of the A4/S4 and 3-series. They aren't far off of the gregincal version, so it seems pretty clear what we can expect in body style.

    2012-BMW-3-Series-Sedan-335i.jpg 2011-audi-s4.jpg

    I offered my mock-up as being a little less aero and a little more curvy, and not having the bottom of the rear windows be at a height that a child can't see out the window. "Hey, look, that's a Roadster next to us at the stoplight! Oh, wait, I forgot that you're in the back seat so you can't see anything out the windows except the sky."

    But I learned long ago that not everyone is going to select my exact preferences, and that's cool by me. It isn't lost on me that very few people bought yellow Roadsters, whereas it is my dream car. As Ian says, that's why they have 31 flavors. :)
     
  19. jeff_adams

    jeff_adams Member

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2013
    Messages:
    617
    Location:
    Monterey
    Honda/Acura sold a bunch of these 3 door coupes

    zajetysu.jpg

    They offered a 4 door version as well, but the hatchbacks were way more popular. I wonder if Tesla could do a mini S version. Perhaps they could figure out a way to do a combo door hinge? It could open butterfly style or regular depending on your preference.
     
  20. ChrisH

    ChrisH Member

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2013
    Messages:
    90
    Location:
    Milton, wa
    Tesla should just go with this. Looks amazing. Any chance you could do a front, rear, and 3/4 view like this?
     

Share This Page