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Model 3 changes from Jan 2018 til now; buying new vs. pre-owned Jan 2018

I am considering a pre-owned model 3 from Jan 2018 as compared to a new one. Compared to a new LR AWD, I would save around $7,500 on a 2018 pre-owned, 22k miles, black on black, premium interior and FSD. The end of the vin/serial is 03888. I drive only around 6,000 miles per year so not too concerned about hitting my mileage warranty cap, but would obviously run out of factory warranty two years sooner. I don't live in a cold climate so I am fine with RWD over AWD, and the slightly lower acceleration.

I was researching for major changes and it seems like the seat designs were changed (more leg support for rear seats now), and some cosmetic changes to the front seats. I also noticed there are some changes to the UV protection on the glass (older has more UV protection on the back window rather than just the top).

My understanding is FSD will make me eligible for HW3.0 upgrade down the road when needed. Is there anything else i would lose in terms of current or future autopilot upgrades? Any changes to the sound system?

Is there ANYTHING else that I am missing or should consider when going for this 2018 vehicle?


Well-Known Member
Feb 1, 2016
They have recently made changes that are supposed to significantly reduce interior noise. But I haven't seen any details on what those changes are.

Lots of other small changes like they no longer come with frunk mats, or bag holder clips in the frunk, and they have changed, or eliminated, the vent between the trunk and the passenger compartment.
Could someone also confirm that tesla offered a suspension swap to early owners for free?

If I recall correctly, there was a cutoff date, sometime in mid December 2017, when they switched from a stiffer shock to softer shock. And yes, there were 2017 Model 3 owners who were able to get the shocks swapped for free.

And just to add a few changes I can remember but havent seen mentioned:

Improved headlights - changed sometime in mid 2018?
Phone charger cables (USBC and Lightning) no longer included (early 2019?)
Mobile connector no longer comes with the 240V adapters (early 2019?)
Rear seat bottom cushion improved (mid-April 2018 build)
Elon said newer cars have improved sound deadening (he mentioned this a few weeks ago)
Pedestrian warning speaker (August 2019?)

And there's a thread here talking about the missing grocery hooks in the frunk, the "new" (and degraded) dead pedal, and the updated floor mat that goes with the new dead pedal (theres also talk of newer cars not coming with the frunk mat or ambient door lighting, but that may be a SR vs non-SR trim issue, not sure)

To answer your question: Would any of this stuff be worth $7500? Not to me, no
Thanks for the feedback. I guess I need to fly over there and sit in the front seats to see if that actually makes a difference to me. I am hoping it won't. Not as worried about the back since it will be used rarely.

Lastly, I have not seen anything mentioned about changes to battery, materials, motor, etc. I am hoping that there weren't some issues in the early VINs that would cause them to die earlier which were fixed in subsequent production runs.
I bought my M3P in May ‘19, and took delivery in June. Delivery rep said I got one of the last cars with the home link garage thing as standard equipment and it would be $300 for new buyers. I’m not sure if all trim levels came with that, but I think they might have. That would be added value for the pre-Juneish model 3’s.
So is the difference in seats worth $7,500? There aren’t any older models near me to try out. I’m 5,10, 165lbs so support isn’t too big of an issue

I would rather buy new, not buy FSD and price difference becomes null? You might get better resale value? and new car has some minor improvements as you see but also some items are missing like homelink, 240v charger, hooks, etc. Just some food for thought.

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