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M3 first impressions and advice needed

Like you already stated, doesn't sound like a sound financial decision. Boring, yes, but a 5-6yr old Avalon is a nice smooth comfy reliable ride, and 6-cyl too. But, man, you went out of your way to rent a Tesla, so maybe all that doesn't matter.

I must agree with your assessment, the interior does feel a little cheap for a $50K+ car to me too (and I own one).
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Yes, this is the dilemma you have when you own a Toyota. The cars are so reliable that you never need to replace them. Yet they are so boring to drive that you wish they would fall apart so you could justify getting rid of them and replacing them with a Tesla.

haha, this is the funniest comment on the tread. You are right, the Avalon was my first rational purchase in cars and yet it proved to be exactly like you described it


Active Member
Jul 25, 2019
You say you don't really need a car now.
That's the answer.
But you say you got the bug.
There is the other answer.
Life is full of wants, needs, and rational.
If you can make the (want) outweigh (need + rational), then you will buy a Tesla.
Tesla is not a Need or Rational if you don't really need a new car.
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M3 is the best car I have ever owned, by a wide margin. Don't confuse minimalist with cheap on the interior. The interior is serene, functional, and beautiful when compared to any other vehicle.
No confusion, I understand simplicity but I work in product development and I also understand when a manufacturer cuts corners. I saw the typical issues with the window seal bunching up and the driver door seal was sagging - can probably be fixed easy with some glue.
I own a 3 but personally in your case I would wait until the Y's start rolling out to make sure the 3 is best for you. The next few months will see a lot of direct reviews/experiences on the Y and also the used market on the 3 will grow. By waiting you might also get a nice deal on a lightly used 3 if you decide to go that route.
That’s where I’m leaning towards too. I wouldn’t say I find the Y more attractive design wise, in fact my ranking order of Tesla designs is S>X>3>Y>Cybertruck
... In a way it would replace the Land Cruiser - the LC took me to wonderful, hard to access trails and created great memories. The M3 would of course take me only to paved roads but likely encourage me to go out more often - I was only doing 4-5 trips in the LC/yr.
View attachment 512379

Love the LC and feel ya on that. Our '16 Sequoia is lifted on 34's and has it's place in our stable. It sees limited duty now too, mostly relegated to beach trips with plenty of room for us 5 plus friends and the dog. Can't wait for our P3D+ to arrive next month (ordered 1/19), but it's a completely different animal for sure and will serve a different purpose.

Sequoia Beach.jpg
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Well-Known Member
Mar 4, 2017
SF Bay Area
OP I had a 2001 top of the line Avalon that served me well for all those years. My 9/2018 Model 3 replaced it (white AWD black interior just like your test drive car). The last few years the Avalon was looking a bit aged in parts and I really wanted something new before it started running into repair money that I’d rather put towards a new car. The Avalon was size-wise and ride-wise more comparable to our AWD air suspension Model S, but since we had the MS decided to order the Model 3 and save a bit money wise (There were no test cars available when I ordered btw so ordered on faith I’d like it). The Model 3 also had greater range than our 75D MS and all the newer cool gadgets. I was also like you concerned about the seat comfort and sole center screen but found the seats comfortable and adapted quite quickly to the screen.

All I can say is that I don’t regret one minute driving my Model 3 over saving money with my Avalon. Over one year later and still love driving my car. We originally bought the Avalon to travel in comfort with parents when they came out for a visit and really don’t need something that big now. I don’t miss the gas station visits, our car was not a hybrid and fill ups were like $50-60 when prices were higher. I charge at home now (pretty effortless and timing set through the car — use a NEMA 14-50 outlet) so no gas station visits except for air for my tires and I know we save plenty on charging as oppose to gas. Would have loved to have purchased my Model 3 at least a year earlier as I ended up with expensive A/C work on the Avalon. Apart from filling the car with wiper fluid and air in the tires it’s been maintenance free. Due for a tire rotation. I love no more regular oil changes, tune-ups, smog checks. I love getting the OTA updates and the features that have come out. The TeslaCam/Sentry Mode has been a really nice bonus that I got after having the car. The car does keep getting better unlike my Avalon.
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