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Lo-Drag: Cd < 0.2

malcolm

Active Member
Nov 12, 2006
3,072
1,729
Sources: Tesla Model 3 will have extreme aerodynamic design details | Electrek

What I’m hearing internally is that CEO Elon Musk is intensely driving the engineering designers to deliver a design with a drag coefficient lower than .20 which would make it the lowest of any mass production car in the world and close to extreme vehicles like GM’s EV1 and Volkswagen’s XL1 (pictured above), – both cars that have flat rear wheel covers…

Other options, mentioned on Teslas cheapest car could be its weirdest-looking - SlashGear

More aerodynamic wheels (narrower?)
Body panels that fit over the rear wheels (could they be transparent without being a pain to keep clean?)
A single fared-in wiper blade
Changes to the underside to improve airflow/use as heatsink for the cooling system
And persuading the authorities to change the rules regarding wing mirrors - I can't see this one happening in the short-term.

I'm wondering if the base car will be normal-looking (with a Cd similar to the S), but some customers can choose some sort of "Slipstream Pack" or "Range pack" which reduces the Cd below 0.2 but does involve visual changes which others might consider too weird for them.

Similar idea to the bodykit modifications for Roadster 3.0.

Essentially, "Lo-drag" becomes just another option like "Subzero weather", "Rear facing seats" or "Ludicrous". Like the rear facing seats, Lo-drag might not be available after-purchase since it could involve structural changes.
 
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Xenius

Active Member
Apr 24, 2015
1,045
1,455
Havertown, PA
It'll be pretty amazing if they can get below, or even AT .20. That said I'm hoping the car isn't ugly, but honestly if that's the worst thing about it then so be it!
 

ItsNotAboutTheMoney

Well-Known Member
Jul 12, 2012
10,619
7,795
Maine
Elon Musk previously said that they were unsure of unconventional v conventional, but were leaning to unconventional which would be in a "useful" way and "not just a weirdmobile".
 

JRP3

Hyperactive Member
Aug 20, 2007
20,295
46,799
Central New York
Under 2 would be really difficult, and really amazing if they can do it. I agree with the idea of a special "aero" package that might add things like wheel covers, that way the general public who might be turned off by such wouldn't have to get them. I'm all about the aero so I'd probably go for it since I'm not expecting a weirdmobile. Of course I also like the look of the VW XL1.
 

WarpedOne

Supreme Premier
Aug 17, 2006
4,359
6,527
Slovenia, Europe
More aerodynamic wheels (narrower?)
Of course. Expect 225 or even 205.

Body panels that fit over the rear wheels (could they be transparent without being a pain to keep clean?)
There are other options.
Smaller tire - body gaps, flush wheel design (no big rim holes).

Changes to the underside to improve airflow/use as heatsink for the cooling system
Nope.
Inside wheel well enclosure? Yes.

And persuading the authorities to change the rules regarding wing mirrors - I can't see this one happening in the short-term.
This change is overrated.

I'm wondering if the base car will be normal-looking (with a Cd similar to the S), but some customers can choose some sort of "Slipstream Pack" or "Range pack" which reduces the Cd below 0.2 but does involve visual changes which others might consider too weird for them.
One word: kamm tail.

Edit: remove misquoted text that appeared as mine.
 
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tga

Supporting Member
Apr 8, 2014
3,951
2,794
New Hampshire
Changes to the underside to improve airflow/use as heatsink for the cooling system
I don't think this could meet all your cooling needs - sometimes you need cooling without airflow (charging/supercharging, A/C in stop and go traffic). Otherwise the Model S could be built without fans and just rely on ram air through the radiators.

Please, no weirdmobiles - in Franz we trust!
 

nikolai

Member
Jul 16, 2014
30
5
Denver, CO
I think thinks like body panels over the rear wheels and a conical rear end are very unlikely. I have a colleague that works at Tesla and while he can't tell me anything specific, he has told me that the Model 3 looks really nice and he thinks a lot of people are going to like it. I think that immediately excludes some of the suggested features that would be off-putting to many.
 

ItsNotAboutTheMoney

Well-Known Member
Jul 12, 2012
10,619
7,795
Maine
I think it would be safer for Tesla to raise price $5-7K than build a non-traditional car.

I think for the Model 3 it would be a financial disaster for Tesla to raise the base price from $35k to $40k in order to be totally conventional. I think that the difference in sales between "reasonably equipped" $40k and $45k would very large.
 

electracity

Active Member
Jun 8, 2015
4,028
2,531
60606
I think for the Model 3 it would be a financial disaster for Tesla to raise the base price from $35k to $40k in order to be totally conventional. I think that the difference in sales between "reasonably equipped" $40k and $45k would very large.

Every purpose built EV produced to date was designed and produced by people thinking it was different but attractive. Including the Leaf.
 

JRP3

Hyperactive Member
Aug 20, 2007
20,295
46,799
Central New York
I think the vehicle that will represent the future of transportation should be expected to have some unconventional features. As long as it looks good and hits all the performance stats expected it's going to sell like crazy. I don't think most people looking to buy a cutting edge electric vehicle really want it to look "conventional". The grill-less front of the X is likely a precursor to what is coming.
 

tga

Supporting Member
Apr 8, 2014
3,951
2,794
New Hampshire
I don't think most people looking to buy a cutting edge electric vehicle really want it to look "conventional".
Except that the 3 isn't targeted solely at people "looking to buy a cutting edge electric vehicle", but at converting the general public from ICE's. Too much departure from the conventional will hurt that mission.
 

JRP3

Hyperactive Member
Aug 20, 2007
20,295
46,799
Central New York
Sure, and I don't expect a "weirdmobile", but I do expect Tesla to push the edge at least somewhat, and they will need to if they are targeting sub 2.0 cd.
 

RobStark

Well-Known Member
Jul 2, 2013
10,557
54,546
Los Angeles, USA
Tesla will unveil the concept/prototype in March 2016.

They can get feedback. If vast majority hate it they can change it.

If most like but many hate it then they can keep it.

In this case, the minority will grow to like while the majority creates enough demand to keep Fremont and Reno running at max capacity.
 

electracity

Active Member
Jun 8, 2015
4,028
2,531
60606
Leaked Image:

1214-Nissan-Leaf.jpg
 

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