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Model 3's Ride Quality

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by BobRoberts, Jan 6, 2018.

  1. ForeverFree

    ForeverFree Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2015
    Messages:
    210
    Location:
    Sherman Oaks, CA
    Tesla cheerfully swapped out the suspension on our 22xx vehicle. Even picked up car, dropped off loaner, and then dropped off car when finished. Saw (on app) them perform two road tests after work completed.

    Did our own test drive last night. Findings:

    Still feel every bump and feel them as strongly as before. However, harshness of bumps noticeably reduced. If boulevard cruisers make it feel that road has been re-paved and bumps reduced, this feels more as though road has been coated with thin layer of rubber. Hard bumps that used to make an instantaneous “thock” now make more of a rubbery “thoomp.” Very much like an E46 BMW 3-Series.

    Excessive jiggly, jello-ey, our-of-phase, wrong-reboundy feeling now reduced.

    However, freeway joint wuh-wuh-wuh-wuh sensation still there. Will have to compare in our Model S. Admittedly, I-405 headed north from US-101 is not Caltrans’ finest work.

    All of the above is subjective and must be taken with a huge mountain of salt. When one is looking for change, one tends to find it. Our test drive included a windy segment on Mulholland Drive, a local mid-urban mountain road. I wanted to see how much the dampened suspension had hurt handling.

    And, lo, it felt as though it had. In fact, when we reached my favorite S-turn segment, I consciously chose not to push things too hard. Didn’t want things things to get unsafe.

    Didn’t push it too hard ... or, so I thought. Until I looked at the speedometer. 60 mph. Faster ... by at least 5 mph ... than I’d ever taken that particular segment ... over the past thirty years ... in a Supra, 3000 GT VR4, 330xi, S4, S5, or Model S.

    Yes, Mr. Heisenberg, the very act of observing does compromise one’s observations.

    Nonetheless, I can offer a bottom line:

    Road feel still tight ... but no longer harsh ... no longer jiggly. Handling still epic.

    And, my decision, whether to follow my wife into a Model 3 or stay with an S (either existing or refresh), is now tilting ever so slightly towards the Model 3!
     
    • Informative x 9
    • Helpful x 2
    • Like x 1
  2. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    Which SC did you go to? Could you post a pic of what they did in the service invoice? I want my super harsh ride fixed on my 21xx model 3
     
  3. skivvie

    skivvie Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2018
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    Location:
    Utah
    I just wanted to say THANK YOU for acknowledging this and tempering your observations. Thanks for the update as well.
     
    • Like x 1
  4. gilscales

    gilscales Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2016
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    10
    Location:
    Long Beach, CA
    I rented a Model 3 on Turo for 2 days recently (52xx) so not an early build, it only had 107 miles on it, My wife and I put approx. 340 miles on it and the car definitely is the stiffest riding stock vehicle I have ever driven, 18" wheels with 50 psi (I was not going to play with air pressure on a rented car and I left my air gauge behind anyway)

    Let me tell you right off that I like cars to handle well and have even made changes to my cars that gave up comfort for handling, Recent cars I've owned were 2007 750i with sport package, 2014 535d with sport package, 2010 Accord with
    Tien coil overs, large front and rear sway bars and several chassis braces, my current car is a 2013 Passat TDI and i put ST coil overs on with large front and rear sway bars and made the car handle great while also sacrificing ride quality but i felt the performance was worth it.

    After 2 days in the 3 we got back in my modified stiffer than stock (by a good margin!) Passat and it felt like a Cadillac! My wife had always complained about what I did to the Passat and felt it rode stiffer than her 535d with the sport package, she complained about the ride quality a lot!, we both loved everything about the 3 except the ride and went to several car dealerships test driving many cars and ALL seemed to boring to drive after getting out of the 3!

    We REALLY want a 3 but with a softer ride, I feel the suspension could be softened quite a bit and still allow the car to handle well with just a bit more body roll, I'm all for the handling of this car but would gladly give up some to get a more compliant ride!

    We are torn between getting the LR on coils vs. waiting for the dual motor with air, mainly because I feel it would probably be close to a 15k difference in price as we may not get the $7,500 federal tax credit by the time a dual motor with sas would be available to us.

    I know that the shocks with different valving and longer progressive rate springs would make this closer to what we want but its still a big gamble to us as the way it rides now is a deal breaker for us.

    One last thing that may help, I changed the tires and wheels on my Passat to lighter wheels OZ Ultraleggera hlt's in the same 18" size to save 6 lbs. each over stock and went with a little bigger tire as stock tire size is the same as model 3, I chose the Michelin premier as in a 245/45/18 and the weight rating is over 1700 lbs so it would work well with the 3 I believe and ride should soften with that change alone.

    sorry for the long post but just wanted to share MY experience.

    P.S. my wife now says if we can get the suspension as compliant as the modified Passat then she would gladly take the 3 as she loves everything else about the car so much!
     
    • Informative x 5
  5. ForeverFree

    ForeverFree Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2015
    Messages:
    210
    Location:
    Sherman Oaks, CA

    Up here in Van Nuys.

    Here's an invoice excerpt:




    Concern: Customer: suspension feels rough, SOP parts have arrived

    Pay Type: Warranty

    Corrections: Damper - Rear - LH

    Replaced rear left strut, verified proper operation.

    Part Quantity

    RR SPRING, COIL 74.7-7250 E3 RWD, E3

    DM (1044472-01-D)

    1

    RR DAMPER ASSY - COIL RWD (1044461-

    02-C)

    1

    RR LWR FORE LINK ASSY (1044444-00-A) 1

    Parts Replaced or Added

    Corrections: Damper - Rear - RH

    Replaced rear right strut, verified proper operation.

    Part Quantity

    RR DAMPER ASSY - COIL RWD (1044461-

    02-C)

    1

    RR LWR FORE LINK ASSY (1044444-00-A) 1

    RR SPRING, COIL 74.7-7250 E3 RWD, E3

    DM (1044472-01-D)

    1

    Parts Replaced or Added

    Corrections: Spring and Damper Assembly - Front - LH

    Replaced front left strut, verified proper operation.

    Part Quantity

    DAMPER ASSY FR LH RWD, COIL E3

    (1044364-01-E)

    1

    Parts Replaced or Added

    Corrections: Spring and Damper Assembly - Front - RH

    Replaced front right strut, verified proper operation.

    Part Quantity

    DAMPER ASSY FR RH RWD, COIL E3

    (1044369-01-E)

    1

    Parts Replaced or Added

    Corrections: Four Wheel Alignment - Check and Adjust

    Performed wheel alignment.

    Verified repairs.
     
    • Informative x 3
    • Helpful x 2
  6. Az_Rael

    Az_Rael Supporting Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Palmdale, CA
    VIN 1986 checking in for a data point:

    1044461-02-B (rear driver)
    1044364-01-D (front driver)

    Our other car is a P85D with the early + suspension, so I trend OK with stiff suspension. I don't find the 3 to be harsh, but it is a bit "bouncy" in a stiff way which I attribute to the coils vs the P85Ds air. Neither are fun on rough surface streets.

    I don't know if I would ask to swap out for the newer dampers. Would want to drive one first, so would have to wait for test drive cars to be available I would guess. I wouldn't want it to feel like a "standard" model S with air, but would be OK if it was closer to my old P85 with coils, which was really nice.
     
  7. cab

    cab Member

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    Location:
    Grapevine, TX
    I have to admit, this thread is making me appreciate my P85+ suspension which I have found to be nicely in-between the standard Model S air and the firmest early P85D. It would be nice if Tesla were to continue to tweak the model 3 dampers and not just offer a smoother suspension on the later air suspension equipped cars (note: it's not even guaranteed there).
     
  8. Andrew

    Andrew Model S #6151, Model 3 #1576

    Joined:
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    381
    Location:
    Santa Monica, CA
    Just called the Centinela Service Center and got routed to main HQ... ended up talking with someone in vehicle support. He checked with the engineering team while we were on the phone. They said/confirmed that the "cutoff" date for the harsh suspension was for cars built December 27th.

    Turns out our 3 was built on December 27th... I've got an appointment to take it in on Monday; I'm assuming (hoping!) we have the older setup and they'll be able to implement the fix.

    Thanks to everyone who has posted about this, I would not have thought to press the issue with them. Looking forward to having a smoother ride soon! :)
     
    • Helpful x 3
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  9. SigNC

    SigNC Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    NC
    I can confirm that a 37XX made in 1/2018 matches this part. Not exactly easy to get to but I did it :)
     
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  10. cab

    cab Member

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    Location:
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    Andrew, do you mind sharing your VIN #? Although they may not be entirely sequential, it could give of a clue as to approximately where the VIN cutoff is.

    Foreverfree - great 1st day review. I look forward to additional updates after you've had a chance to drive a bit more (although I suspect you are already zeroing in in it and it won't change much from your initial impression).
     
  11. Andrew

    Andrew Model S #6151, Model 3 #1576

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Santa Monica, CA
    @cab ... 1576

    Definitely not entirely sequential -- when ours was assigned/delivered, other people were reporting VINs in the ~2500 range. Until today I had been assuming our car was actually sitting on the lot in Fremont for a few weeks before being assigned to us!
     
  12. Skione65

    Skione65 Member

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    Location:
    Kentucky
    I’m not exactly sure what’s happening here. Is Tesla only replacing Suspension Springs and Dampers on those cars whose owners complain/file a complaint and no others? Are they replacing everyone’s? That’s thousands at this point. Are they changing production from this point forward acknowledging the firm suspension issue? I’m confused as to what is actually going on here re: the suspension. Some are saying Tesla IS replacing theirs...some are saying Tesla WONT replace theirs. Is it VIN specific....is it in a certain VIN range?

    What is going on?

    Ski
     
  13. cab

    cab Member

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    Location:
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    It appears Tesla will replace the suspension for the early VIN cars (apparently up through 12/27/2017 production), but only IF the owner complains (i.e. they aren't calling all owners as this isn't a mandated safety recall). Unfortunately, not all service centers appear to be aware of this option which adds to the confusion.
     
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  14. patrick40363

    patrick40363 Member

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    I drove a 3 last weekend and the ride was fine.
     
  15. Andrew

    Andrew Model S #6151, Model 3 #1576

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    Was it built after December 27, 2017?
     
  16. patrick40363

    patrick40363 Member

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    probably. It was 2 weeks old at the time.
     
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  17. mark1ev@yahoo.co

    [email protected] New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2014
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    Location:
    Sac ca
    Andrew,,,, What did Tesla say? What vin #s and part #s if you know them? Thanks in advance...
    Mark
     
  18. jomo25

    jomo25 Active Member

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    2,030
    Location:
    Scottsdale, AZ
    My subjective opinion in my 70 miles of mostly surface road driving:

    The 3 is as tight as it should be, but not any more so. Personally, I love it. Roads here in AZ are smoother, and I am used to stiffer suspensions from my past vehicles prior to Tesla’s. But I don’t find it too harsh at all, and nicely planted.
     
  19. Andrew

    Andrew Model S #6151, Model 3 #1576

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Santa Monica, CA
    @[email protected] - Just got back from the SC. They hadn't actually ordered the parts yet (doh!) so they placed the order and sent me home with my car. When the parts come in next week they'll send a valet to pick up the car and drop off a loaner. They said it's a one-day (possibly same day) job to do the suspension fix. Looking forward to having the improved suspension next week! :)
     
  20. internalaudit

    internalaudit Member

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    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Didn't even know that only the Dual Motors can come with Air Suspensions.
     

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