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Model 3 Width

T34ME

Active Member
Mar 31, 2016
2,262
3,528
Inland Empire
The cabin may be 2.4" wider than a Gen 2 prius. But the widest point of a car is at the wheel wells, and I think you'll find that the Model 3 is a lot wider than the Prius at the wheel wells.
What do you say the width of the Model 3 at the wheel wheels is - 82.2", 76.1", or just what?

I know that both the front and rear track of the Model 3 is about 2" wider than my Prius. Are you saying the wheels on the Model 3 are tucked in way more than the Prius?
 

SageBrush

REJECT Fascism
May 7, 2015
12,251
15,178
New Mexico
I just measured my Prius Prime. It might be identical to the G4 Prius but I am not positive.
Measuring width is no easy feat. In the end I measured the front windshield width and then the distance from the edge of the windshield to either the folded or unfolded mirror edge

Unfolded Mirrors width: 83 inches
Folded Mirrors width: 71 inches

I would not take these measurements as gospel, but it certainly is pretty good evidence that the Model 3 is not going to stand out on the road as a particularly wide car, and conversely the Prime is not a narrow car.
 

T34ME

Active Member
Mar 31, 2016
2,262
3,528
Inland Empire
Measuring width is no easy feat. In the end I measured the front windshield width and then the distance from the edge of the windshield to either the folded or unfolded mirror edge
I simply rolled down both front windows. I had DW hold the tape on one unfolded mirror and I took the measurement on the other. It was a straight shot through the front seat compartment.

Unfolded Mirrors width: 83 inches
Folded Mirrors width: 71 inches
Your Prius Prime is about 3" wider than my Gen 2 Prius. It appears that your Prime is almost the same widthwise as the model 3. Where the BIG difference is in length. The Model 3 is about 8" LONGER than my Gen 2 Prius (it gives the 3 a longer, lower, swoopy look).

I would not take these measurements as gospel, but it certainly is pretty good evidence that the Model 3 is not going to stand out on the road as a particularly wide car, and conversely the Prime is not a narrow car.
I agree, the Model 3 is about the same dimensions as the cars in it's class. There is nothing unusual about the width of the car.
 

phil0909

Member
Nov 30, 2016
440
395
California
I agree, the Model 3 is about the same dimensions as the cars in it's class. There is nothing unusual about the width of the car.

What "class" do you think Model 3 is in? Full size? Mid size?

Or do you just mean this as a tautology - it's about the same size as cars of its size?
 

gregincal

Active Member
Oct 26, 2012
3,764
2,294
Santa Cruz, CA
What do you say the width of the Model 3 at the wheel wheels is - 82.2", 76.1", or just what?

I know that both the front and rear track of the Model 3 is about 2" wider than my Prius. Are you saying the wheels on the Model 3 are tucked in way more than the Prius?

The 3 comes with wider tires than the Prius, so the wheel mounting flange will be deeper into the well.

Edit: Actually I'm not really familiar with how wheel offsets tend to work and what they are likely to be for the 3. I know that the specs show the rear track width to be 4 1/2 inches narrower than the Model S, but the body only about a inch narrower. Does that mean the wheels are likely to have a different offset?
 
Last edited:

SageBrush

REJECT Fascism
May 7, 2015
12,251
15,178
New Mexico
Perhaps my last measurement ?

Window to window (front):

LEAF: 51 inches
Prime: 52 inches

My wife views herself as skilled in visual questions, but was positive that the LEAF was the wider measurement by about 6 inches. This is not a dig at her, but to say that we are easily fooled.
 

phil0909

Member
Nov 30, 2016
440
395
California
I see you are new here. You must have missed this thread. So yes, "mid-size", but you already knew that, didn't you? ;)

No, I'm not new. I've been a member for a year or two, but don't get to spend a lot of time on the forum.

I did see that thread. It contains speculation, but no answer as to the Model 3's size class. Did I miss something?

In fact, I did not - and still do not - know whether the Model 3 will be a midsize car. AFAIK, Tesla has not disclosed the measurements that would determine the classification. My guess is the same as yours, that it will qualify as midsize under the current EPA guidelines. But I will not be shocked if it turns out to be a compact.

The top midsize sedans in America are all 72-73 inches in width. If that ends up being Model 3's size category, it will stand out as 3-4 inches wider than the others. Of course, if it qualifies as a compact, it's girth will stand out even more.

The size difference may not be important to you, but for some of us, it is. I currently own a full-size Lexus LS, and a Mercedes SUV and the Model 3 at 76.1" is wider than either of them. Parking in my garage and at my office will be tighter than I would prefer. I was hoping the Model 3 would be a compact car, at least in its external dimensions, and especially in width. It is not.
 

Dave EV

Active Member
Jun 23, 2009
1,700
1,157
San Diego
I know that both the front and rear track of the Model 3 is about 2" wider than my Prius. Are you saying the wheels on the Model 3 are tucked in way more than the Prius?
The track of a car is defined as the width between the centerline of the wheels.

Model 3 Track: 62.2"
Prius Prime Track: 60.6" (rear, which is wider than the front)
Altima SR Track: 62.0"

Now, I currently have a 2017 Nissan Altima in my garage, which appears to be similar to the Model 3 in dimensions, though surprisingly about 6" shorter with a length/width/height of 191.9" / 72.0" / 58.0" compared to the Model 3 at 184.8" / 76.2" / 56.8". Note that the Altima's width is without mirrors.

Back to the track width: The 2017 Altima SR has the exact same size tires as the Model S - 235/45/18 and about 9.2" wide. So at the very least, the the outside of the wheels of both the Altima and Model S is within 0.2" with the Model 3 being slightly wider. The Prius Prime has a 195/65/15 tire which is 7.7" wide. So outside wheel width is about:

Model 3 track + tire: 71.4"
Prius Prime track + tire: 68.3"
Altima SR track + tire: 71.2"

We've now established that the wheels should basically sit in the same spot for the Altima and the Model 3 and the Prius Prime about 3" narrower. Now the question is: Do you really believe that the fenders of the Model 3's fenders stick out 2" farther on each side than the Altima? IMO that would really tuck the tires deep inside the fenders and would not be aesthetically pleasing. Even the Prius Prime's width of 69.3" is only about 1" wider than the track-width + tire width.

Given the above, it's my opinion that the mirrors stick out 2" past the fenders on the Model 3.
 
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Reactions: SageBrush

T34ME

Active Member
Mar 31, 2016
2,262
3,528
Inland Empire
Given the above, it's my opinion that the mirrors stick out 2" past the fenders on the Model 3.
Your calculations agree with mine. What is odd is that Tesla gives the width of the Model 3 WITH mirrors, while the other manufacturers appear to give the width WITHOUT mirrors. This is what is throwing people off, thinking that a Model 3 is 4/5" wider than a similar mid-size car, If Tesla were to be consistent with the standard practice of measuring without mirrors the width would be listed as ~71/72". Bottom line is that there is nothing unusual about the width of a Model 3. The width fits within the norm of a typical mid-size car.
 

elroy

Member
Feb 22, 2018
7
13
Richmond, VA
My garage door opening is 93 1/2" wide. Plenty big enough with 8.5 inches on each side after the mirrors are folded, but my wife still wanted some extra assurance when pulling into the garage. I bought two of these on amazon and mounted them in the upper corners of my garage door: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B077FRZTN4

It gives a great view of the gap on both sides as you approach the door:
mirrors.jpg


And mounting was easy as I just used a pair of small c-clamps on each bracket and attached them to the side rails of the door track:
clamps.jpg


I hope others may find this helpful.
 

voip-ninja

Give me some sugar baby
Mar 15, 2012
4,121
4,693
Colorado
For the benefit of others who consider doing the same thing (good idea btw).

You might not want to use c-clamps to mount these to the garage track. There's a good chance they are going to loosen over time and eventually fall off. The c-clamp is heavy enough that if it falls on something important it could damage it.

You just need to drill out the track and get a couple of bolts and nuts and torque it down good and tight and it won't be going anywhere, ever.
 

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