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Main differences between 2018 M3 and today

Looking at upgrading from my 2018 RWD LR to a new dual motor LR. I know there are some differences, but I want to know what else I'm missing.

Removed since 2018
- premium connectivity
- lumbar support
- radar
- wired phone charger
- free homelink

Added since 2018
- power trunk lid
- no more chrome
- heat pump
- sentry USB drive in glovebox
- Autopilot (didn't have it on my 2018)
- heated steering wheel

What am I missing that might make me regret making the change? My 2018 has been pretty solid for me...
 

nstig8

Member
Oct 19, 2020
34
34
Virginia
New center console
I think they updated to more high power USB-C ports at some point in addition to the USB-A one in the glove box
They updated to air filter door to be easier to change if you are a DIY type
Headlights might be updated as well - some LED matrix thing

Aren't all the cars eventually going to stop using the radar altogether in some future software update?
 
Added since 2018:
Laminated front side windows
FSD computer (HW3)
Cabin filter cover screw moved to bottom (easier to get to)
Rear diffuser has removeable tow hitch access cover
All seats are a newer generation (depends on when you got your 2018)
Heated steering wheel
Updated headlights
Updated center console

Removed since 2018:
Silver Metallic and Obsidian Black colors (doesn't affect you since your car is Red)
Dead pedal plastic cap
 

Watts_Up

Active Member
Mar 4, 2019
3,873
2,837
In a galaxy far, far away
On the new Model 3, there is now a pedestrian waring speaker, also the glass roof don't become orange.

I wonder if the dashbord stripe is also extended on each front door?
The front windows are double pane, improving cabin noise and heating.

The 18" wheels cover changed, and also the 19" and 20" are black matching the chrome delete.
The Model 3 LR and P have a different rear motor (980 versus 990 I belive).

Note: I wonder what evolution the Model 3 will get in the future?

- I China, only the Model 3 SR+ and the Model 3 Performance are currently sold, could this occur on other markets?
- I wonder if the Model 3 will get a larger battery, thus providing a longer range?
- If a smaller hatchback get build (in Germany and China) and may be get build or imported in the US,
then the smaller hatchback would get a 50 kWh and a 75 kWh.
So the Model 3 SR could get a 75 kWh and the Model 3 LR and P could get a 100 kWh?
- Would also the Model 3 updated with a rear casting and may be air suspension?

What am I missing that might make me regret making the change? My 2018 has been pretty solid for me...
The major change would be the heat pump, which is a great feature to improve efficiency in winter for the northern states.

You will certainly notice major acceleration difference between a RWD LR and an AWD LR,
because the front motor is running during strong accelerations.

I prefer the Model 3 with the original chrome:
- the chrome delete is fine with the Model Y, which give a more sporty look,
- however I found the Model 3 to look more classy with chrome.

I also prefer the original silver painted 19" and 20" wheels of the Model 3, over the new black wheels, and I hated the 18" plastic cover.
I noticed that any curb rash on a black wheel is noticeable and prefer the silver wheels for that reason.

@BlueWRXPride Why don't you get a Model Y instead of a second Model 3?
(Especially if the Model Y will get a front and rear single piece casting and 4680 cells?)

How many miles do you have, and how many tires set did you used?
 
Last edited:
@BlueWRXPride Why don't you get a Model Y instead of a second Model 3?
(Especially if the Model Y will get a front and rear single piece casting and 4680 cells?)

How many miles do you have, and how many tires set did you used?
Model 3 vs Model Y:
  • I have 3 kids so I need our minivan for road trips. Around town I don't have the need for a larger car. I could maybe take a model Y with the 3rd row for a road trip, but I'm seriously doubtful on having room for our bags.
  • If i did get the 3rd row, now i'm looking at a car that's $8k more than the M3
  • MY delivery is out to April while M3 is december
  • MY has 19" wheels vs M3 having 18". That means I'd need to buy new wheels for my summer set, and tires will be more expensive every time.
I have 31k miles. I used up the OEM tires, and now have 2 sets of wheels, one with winter tires that have one season left, and one with a summer tread that has time left.

I'm not seeing any major deal breakers for things I'd miss by moving to a new model.
 
- wired phone charger

Everything else has pretty much been covered, just wanted to address this item, there's 2 USB-C ports in the center (front) console, so you still have "wired charging", they're higher power as well (vs. the previous USB-A).


My 2021 has door pocket lights. Maybe only certain trims get them?

Mine too, front and rear (I have a '21 M3P).


I wonder if the dashbord stripe is also extended on each front door?

Yes :)

IMG_7971.jpeg
 

scoobybri

Member
Aug 25, 2021
223
497
Virginia
Rear window defroster strips look much better in the 2021s than in the previous models. I got an earlier year loaner when my 2021 M3LR was at the SC and I was like "WTF is different with the rear defroster on this earlier car?" I hadn't noticed the defroster strips in my car but REALLY noticed them in the older M3. When I got my 2021 back, I realized that the defroster strips are thinner, darker, and only run left to right while the older M3 the strips were wider, lighter, and ran in a rectangular pattern around the rear window. I definitely like the newer design since I didn't even notice it in my car.
 
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