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Model 3 Width

phil0909

Member
Nov 30, 2016
440
395
California
Well, I'd expect it to be shorter in length, but I take your point. It probably won't be narrower.

I think it would be a mistake, though, for Tesla to limit itself forever to widebody cars. Lots of people want/need something narrower than 76 inches wide, particularly in Europe. I have to believe we'll see smaller Teslas someday...
 

JRP3

Hyperactive Member
Aug 20, 2007
19,784
44,367
Central New York
I'd be surprised if the SUV version ended up shorter, the X is longer than the S. As for Tesla "limiting" itself to widebody cars, that's simply a reflection of the reality of battery energy density at this point in time. Once energy density is high enough that people aren't demanding more range then Tesla can start shrinking their cars even more. If you want 300+ miles of range, especially from an SUV, you're going to be stuck with current dimensions for probably at least the next 3-5 years.
 

stopcrazypp

Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2007
10,009
4,928
To circle back, given we know the "official" number now for Model 3, the Prius Prime with mirrors measures 81.5". So only 0.7" wider at 82.2" when mirrors are extended.
Prius Prime width

Of course folded it's 69.3" vs 76.1", a 6.8" difference.
 
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SageBrush

REJECT Fascism
May 7, 2015
12,237
15,158
New Mexico
To circle back, given we know the "official" number now for Model 3, the Prius Prime with mirrors measures 81.5". So only 0.7" wider at 82.2" when mirrors are extended.
Prius Prime width

Of course folded it's 69.3" vs 76.1", a 6.8" difference.
I thought of this too but figured dead dogs should stay dead.
The entire discussion raises a valid point though: for most Americans width is considered with respect to interior comfort or room for baby seats. The varying mirror widths just muddle the issue.

Countries with narrow streets will of course care about the mirror widths.
Time for information to include 3 measurements:
No mirrors
mirrors folded
mirrors open
 
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weak_pig

Member
Apr 2, 2016
143
133
Island
Model 3 is longer and wider than the current Honda Civic.

Tesla Model 3 .. L: 185" ..... W: 76" ..... H: 57"
Honda Civic .. L: 182.3"... W: 70.8"".. H: 55.7"

The current Civic is already quite big and long for a standard sedan... Can't imagine how much bigger the Model 3 would be without seeing it in person.
 

gregincal

Active Member
Oct 26, 2012
3,764
2,294
Santa Cruz, CA
Model 3 is longer and wider than the current Honda Civic.

Tesla Model 3 .. L: 185" ..... W: 76" ..... H: 57"
Honda Civic .. L: 182.3"... W: 70.8"".. H: 55.7"

The current Civic is already quite big and long for a standard sedan... Can't imagine how much bigger the Model 3 would be without seeing it in person.

I think that like the S it won't feel as big as it is. I went from an Audi A3 hatchback to the S and have never had a car remotely that big before. However, looking at it, it doesn't seem like a big car to me (until I back it into my tiny garage). Partly the wide body doesn't make it look as long as it really is.
 

stopcrazypp

Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2007
10,009
4,928
Model 3 is longer and wider than the current Honda Civic.

Tesla Model 3 .. L: 185" ..... W: 76" ..... H: 57"
Honda Civic .. L: 182.3"... W: 70.8"".. H: 55.7"

The current Civic is already quite big and long for a standard sedan... Can't imagine how much bigger the Model 3 would be without seeing it in person.
Given the Model 3 is competing in the premium segment, I think a comparison with the 3 series, C-Class, and A4 (and similar) are more appropriate. I use the more exact numbers since they are available (not sure why you rounded for the 3).

(L/W/H)
Model 3: 184.8 / 76.1 (82.2) / 56.8
3 series: 182.5 / 71.3 (79.9) / 56.3
C-Class: 184.5 / 71.3 (79.5) / 57.0
A4: 186.1 / 72.5 (79.6) / 56.2
IS: 184.5 / 71.3 (79.8) / 56.3
Q50: 189.6 / 71.8 (79.0) / 57.2
TLX: 190.7 / 73.0 (82.3) / 57.0

The width with mirrors folded stands out, but the length and height doesn't for its class.
 
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phil0909

Member
Nov 30, 2016
440
395
California
I'd be surprised if the SUV version ended up shorter, the X is longer than the S. As for Tesla "limiting" itself to widebody cars, that's simply a reflection of the reality of battery energy density at this point in time. Once energy density is high enough that people aren't demanding more range then Tesla can start shrinking their cars even more. If you want 300+ miles of range, especially from an SUV, you're going to be stuck with current dimensions for probably at least the next 3-5 years.

Yes, the X is the true behemoth in the lineup. With the Y, they will not have to shoehorn in a third row of seating, so I would still expect it to come out shorter than the 3, but who knows.

I suspect the widebody design is more about looks than energy density. Tesla likes their cars pretty, and that means wide and low to the ground. I am thinking they'd have been better off to postpone the 3, and the X, for that matter, and instead built the Model Y on a narrower, higher platform. The height would give plenty of room for a big battery. It would be less sexy, but more practical than Model 3. I bet they'd be flying off the shelves right now - those little Honda CRVs and Buick Encores seem to sell pretty well. Then again, I suppose Tesla knows what its doing.
 

BluestarE3

Active Member
Apr 2, 2016
4,083
5,154
Norcal
I am thinking they'd have been better off to postpone the 3, and the X, for that matter, and instead built the Model Y on a narrower, higher platform. The height would give plenty of room for a big battery. It would be less sexy, but more practical than Model 3.
That would be the Chevy Bolt EV if it had the equivalent of Supercharging... then it would be a practical car for city and long distance travel.
I bet they'd be flying off the shelves right now - those little Honda CRVs and Buick Encores seem to sell pretty well. Then again, I suppose Tesla knows what its doing.
With almost half a million reservations, the Model 3 isn't exactly a slouch.
 
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JRP3

Hyperactive Member
Aug 20, 2007
19,784
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Central New York
I suspect the widebody design is more about looks than energy density. Tesla likes their cars pretty, and that means wide and low to the ground. I am thinking they'd have been better off to postpone the 3, and the X, for that matter, and instead built the Model Y on a narrower, higher platform.

It's all about getting the most out of the highest cost component, the battery pack. Higher is bad for aerodynamics and SUV's are heavier than sedans. The SUV Model Y will be less efficient, which means less range, or more battery, which increases costs. Make no mistake, Tesla did the only reasonable thing they could by building the Model 3 the way they did. They did the same thing by building the Model S first instead of the Model X. Believe it or not Tesla actually knows what they are doing.
 

Model 3

Active Member
Jul 13, 2014
2,133
1,301
Norway
Eh. Too slow, and not enough range for my commute. There is the Bolt. It is nice, but I want something better.
I'm not trying to convince you to get a Zoe, but if you reject it, it should be for the right reasons.
You know that Zoe now has got a 41kWh battery pack?
In October 2016 at the Paris Motor Show, Renault unveiled a 41 kWh lithium-ion battery called the ZE40.[4]
... and increases the car range to 400 km (250 mi) under NEDC and allows quick charging. According to Renault, the battery delivers about 300 km (190 mi) on real driving conditions.
Source wikipedia.

And for the "too slow" bit:
;)
 
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kaffine

Member
Apr 1, 2016
250
205
Las Vegas
My daily driver used to be 93.8 inches wide not including the mirrors. Of course I live out west we tend to have wider streets than east coast cities. There was only 1 street that I would try not to go down it had 10 foot wide lanes and posted 45mph limit (50 to 55 actual). Most streets that had 45mph limits had 12 foot lanes and were not a problem. I prefer wider cars.

I find I can get used to the size of the car quickly. I used to be nervous driving smaller cars but got used to it after a few months driving a sports car.

Give Tesla another 10 years to expand their lineup and I'm sure they will add smaller cars. I can see a point where they will have models that a geographic specific but that will be after they have factories in other countries. My guess is the Y will be close to the width of the 3 and perhaps a bit longer.
 

phil0909

Member
Nov 30, 2016
440
395
California
I'm not trying to convince you to get a Zoe, but if you reject it, it should be for the right reasons.
You know that Zoe now has got a 41kWh battery pack?

Source wikipedia.

And for the "too slow" bit:
;)

My commute is long, so 41Kwh is too small, I'd get lots of range anxiety.

But I would definitely buy that Zoe e-sport, if only it were available! :)
 

Dave EV

Active Member
Jun 23, 2009
1,698
1,143
San Diego
It's all about getting the most out of the highest cost component, the battery pack. Higher is bad for aerodynamics and SUV's are heavier than sedans. The SUV Model Y will be less efficient, which means less range, or more battery, which increases costs. Make no mistake, Tesla did the only reasonable thing they could by building the Model 3 the way they did.
More width is also bad for aerodynamics as that increases frontal area. If you want better aero and more space, more length is what you want as you can usually use that extra length to improve aero, or at least avoid making it worse.

FWIW, I don't disagree that Tesla compromised in the wrong areas when designing the 3. Overall they have created a great vehicle, EV or otherwise.
 
Mar 16, 2016
64
21
MidWest
Makes complete sense to me that the M3 width is so similar to the MS. Likely the architecture of the battery package and mounting is common dictating the width be so close. Likely also that the minimal width difference between MS and M3 for "mirrors folded" is actually measured at the body wheel-arches, and only narrower because the wheels between the M3 are narrower. I will have to check but probably 1" narrower given all this.
 

phil0909

Member
Nov 30, 2016
440
395
California
Makes complete sense to me that the M3 width is so similar to the MS. Likely the architecture of the battery package and mounting is common dictating the width be so close. Likely also that the minimal width difference between MS and M3 for "mirrors folded" is actually measured at the body wheel-arches, and only narrower because the wheels between the M3 are narrower. I will have to check but probably 1" narrower given all this.

Sure, it is easier to build a car that's similar to an existing model. But when you only sell 3 models, do you really want two of them to be kinda sorta similar in size? Of course there are still a number of differences between Models S and 3, including the fact that Model S is a foot longer. But I have to wonder whether greater differentiation would benefit sales volumes in the long run.
 

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