This succinctly catalogues my thought process, and reaffirmes my decision. Thanks for the validation!Speaking for myself, I went with the P3D- (when it was availble) because I wanted the insane power/acceleration but I didn't want the 20" wheels and I DID want the special low drag calipers. The low-drag calipers are designed with special piston seals that pull the pistons back further from the disk to insure no light contact between the pad and rotor when the brakes are not applied. Since I will not be taking my Model 3 to the track, even the base brakes and rotors are overkill. I also wanted to fit any 18" wheel I chose on there without regard to caliper clearance. I didn't want to pay a lot of money for wheels/tires I would have to sell right off the bat (what a PITA). Plus, the 18" OEM wheels are actually very light and strong. They have less rotational inertia than ANY DOT approved 20" rim that will fit the Model 3. Big wheels and low profile tires are primarily for looks. If you really want to race, get some nice light 18" rims and performance tires and leave the 20" poser wheels for the posers.
Now there are some armchair Internet experts out there that theorise it's stupid to have all that power on tap without bigger brakes. But they don't know what they are talking about. You only need bigger brakes if you are exceeding the thermal capacity of the regular brakes. I haven't even come close to doing that, I primarily use regen braking. These same Internet armchair theorists surmise that you must not be using all the power of the Performance "tune" if you're not bringing the smaller brakes past their thermal capacity. Again, I say complete hogwash. The small brakes and rotors are more than adequate to haul the P3D down from any reasonable speed you will reach on public roads and when used in conjunctiion with regen braking, they can do multiple threshold stops in a row without fading, particularly in the cooler climate that I do most of my driving in. But I don't do multiple stops from high speed because I don't need to throw away all that power as heat radiating off the disks. The beauty of electromagnetic regen braking was one of the strong attractors to an EV like the Model 3. And, no, this does not mean I don't find the eye-popping acceleration of the P3D useful. I'm a motorcyclist and have two motorcycles that have almost identical 0-60 mph and 1/4 mile times. There are plenty of opportunities to use the amazing acceleration on public roads in a safe, responsible and even legal manner. Or not.
So I would have to agree that it's too bad Tesla doesn't offer the P3D with different brake, tire and wheel options. Oh well, I have what I want, a very capable, yet high efficiency Performance Model 3 that can rip up the dry tarmac as well as be insanely competent on snowy roads in a winter wonderland. If I needed to by another now that the P3D- is no longer obtainable, I would probably settle for the AWD rather than deal with the big brakes and 20" wheels. I would miss the extra thrust but not THAT much.