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Need help deciding between P3D or new Model S

Venom

Member
May 29, 2019
310
168
Chicago, IL
I'm having trouble deciding between the P3D and the new Model S. I currently have a P3D order in progress with a delivery date of March 15th - 31st.

They both have the 3.1s 0-60, which is super important to me.

My biggest worry is that I've heard the Model S isn't as fun to drive because its so big compared to the Model 3. I also really like the idea of Air Suspension, although that isn't a big deal.

My main reason for buying a Tesla is to have a lot of fun, zipping around town and on the highway (responsibly ofc!). I also want to ditch ICE vehicles. However, I LOVE new tech and the new screens on the Model S look awesome.

As far as who's using it, there's only two of us - me and my wife and it's going to be our only car. It'll also be my daily driver, I drive about 150 miles per day so I'll be in my car a lot. Having a great experience in my car is important.

The thing that frustrates me the most with the Model 3 is the lack of HUD behind the steering wheel. I'm coming from a car where I rely on the speedometer behind the steering wheel A LOT.

The P3D loan payment will be pretty easy for me, but the Model S will be pushing it yet I could still make the payments. I plan on keeping the cars for at least 5 years. Ideally longer!

I just don't want to be regretting my decision if I go with the Model 3 instead of the new Model S. What would you guys recommend?

Another question I had - does the new Model S have the potential to have better Autopilot/FSD than the 3?

Cheers
 

byeLT4

Member
Feb 16, 2017
696
641
Texas
I have a Ludi S. I love it and came from a Z06 Corvette. I think the battery pack gives the car such a low center of gravity and that instant torque makes it feels smaller/lighter than it is, but.... It is a big car, you can definitely tell. I hear the 3 is much more nimble and if they offered a 3 with Ludicrous acceleration I most likely would have gone that route. I also hear that you get used to the Model 3 screen very quickly. You really can't go wrong, best of luck in your decision!
 
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Black306

Member
Oct 14, 2019
531
758
Sacramento
Since you’re looking for opinions and you picked a neutral sub forum, I’ll chime in. :)

My original thought was to look for a Model S. However, being a performance car nut, a normal S wouldn’t do. So I was in the market for a used P__D; preferred a P100D, but realistically a P85D or P90D. That said, I personally wouldn’t consider a new S LR.

Actually, a P3D isn’t the car I would ultimately pick. Coming from a number of Mustangs, I’d prefer a sporty, 2+2, 2-door EV. Ah, but I digress.

These were the considerations that ultimately determined a P3D for me.

• 3 is more nimble; less weight to move around; handles better; smooth ride isn’t a consideration
• 3 is simpler [function]; manual door handles; manual trunk; no ‘gauge cluster;’ less to break
• 3 is simpler [design]; I find cars WAY too “busy;” the radical simplicity of the 3 is something I really like
• 3 is smaller; easier to navigate; less tight fit in the garage
• 3 is new; wasn’t considering a new S; reap full length of warranty and wouldn’t have to worry about what a previous owner did to the car

Not exactly your considerations and I don’t know if someone else will have the your same list of considerations. In reality, either car you choose will be awesome and you’ll toot its praises because of selection bias. :D
 
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Venom

Member
May 29, 2019
310
168
Chicago, IL
Since you’re looking for opinions and you picked a neutral sub forum, I’ll chime in. :)

My original thought was to look for a Model S. However, being a performance car nut, a normal S wouldn’t do. So I was in the market for a used P__D; preferred a P100D, but realistically a P85D or P90D. That said, I personally wouldn’t consider a new S LR.

Actually, a P3D isn’t the car I would ultimately pick. Coming from a number of Mustangs, I’d prefer a sporty, 2+2, 2-door EV. Ah, but I digress.

These were the considerations that ultimately determined a P3D for me.

• 3 is more nimble; less weight to move around; handles better; smooth ride isn’t a consideration
• 3 is simpler [function]; manual door handles; manual trunk; no ‘gauge cluster;’ less to break
• 3 is simpler [design]; I find cars WAY too “busy;” the radical simplicity of the 3 is something I really like
• 3 is smaller; easier to navigate; less tight fit in the garage
• 3 is new; wasn’t considering a new S; reap full length of warranty and wouldn’t have to worry about what a previous owner did to the car

Not exactly your considerations and I don’t know if someone else will have the your same list of considerations. In reality, either car you choose will be awesome and you’ll toot its praises because of selection bias. :D
Okay you’ve sold me on the 3, I’m going to cancel my Model S order. RIP to my $100 deposit haha.
 

byeLT4

Member
Feb 16, 2017
696
641
Texas
Crazy that a newly designed S might be available before the 3. I guess they still ship the first 2 months of the quarter overseas?
 

Venom

Member
May 29, 2019
310
168
Chicago, IL
Crazy that a newly designed S might be available before the 3. I guess they still ship the first 2 months of the quarter overseas?
Yeah exactly and they’ve already begun production of the new Model S. Deliveries will start within the US from February
 
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1FASTROD

Member
Oct 2, 2019
190
184
Toronto
I own a Model 3 Performance (stealth) and also test drove and considered buying the Model S. Including my thoughts.

At the time (Aug.2019) the Model 3P made more sense. It was cheaper, faster, agile and had more modern tech (including faster charging) than the Model S. My wife loves the Model S and regrets me not buying one but I wanted the faster car (without having to pay double for a Model S Performance). Also at the time rumors' had started that the Model S was dated and was going to be replaced.

Now, the Model S design has been updated, has the newer tech, is just as fast as the M3P, and is "insanely" fast if you get a Plaid. Money no object, I'd get a Model S if doing it again. Wife would be happy, I'd have a flashier car (Model 3's are common). In fact I'd cough up for the Plaid (not sure I'd go Plaid+ as I don't understand the differences yet), as it would make me one of the fastest cars on the street (0-60 <2's, 1/4 mile in 9's!!!), while looking like a responsible owner.

Get the Model S if you want my opinion. I'm considering trading in and upgrading, if they don't hit me too much on the trade-in.

The bigger question for me is Cybertruck 4WD or Model S.
 
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1FASTROD

Member
Oct 2, 2019
190
184
Toronto
P.S. You do get use to the minimalistic dash and screen of the Model 3. I wouldn't go back to the older styled clusters (I.e. MS) and find them too distracting. But I have installed an aftermarket (dash mount) HUD in my M3 for when I want to go fast.
 

McMoo

Member
Nov 19, 2018
163
132
St. Louis
I think you’ll prefer the 3. I went from a civic si to a g35 to the model 3 stealth performance.

I thought I wanted a used S but ended up with the 3 for the exact reasons you stated. I’ve driven the S and X multiple times since and it always confirms my decision, especially for the price and performance difference.

The S is not a sporty car. It’s fast but it’s not nimble.

See if you can do an overnight test drive with a 3 or rent one on turo.

I’m only considering replacing the 3 since have kids, but that’s not an issue for you.
 

ZoomsansVroom

Supporting Member
May 3, 2019
180
57
29577
A) If you want a performance car, get an older Porsche, or Viper, or Lotus, where the price has bottomed out. Teslas are NOT sports cars, in any fashion.

B) With that said, I have my 3P, because the S seemed very odd inside. (I bought mine in 2019). I think the S LR is a better value. Also, I think the best bet with a Tesla, is to always get the latest design, no matter which “class” it’s aimed at, since they’re all about the same price...

C) I have a tri motor CT on order. I will probably stick with it, but want to see the dimensions. If it’s too large to park in one of the cities I work in, I’ll get the new S LR.
 

GasDoc84

Member
Jan 20, 2020
49
23
SoCal
Sounds like you have decided, but I'll throw in my 2 cents since I had the same debate with myself and have had my S for over a year now;

The P3D is "zippy" and fun to drive. That being said, I drive a lot like you, and the comfort of the S was unmatched. I felt like the 3 was more of a track feel, as I felt all the bumps etc. The S is more comfortable inside too. I never feel like I am driving some big boat with the S, so don't let that trouble you. I also have a lot more room in the S, and on a superficial level, it feels a class above than the 3.
Also, the S gets you free supercharging (are they still doing that?). You can literally never pay for your electricity if you so choose. Depends on your driving and location to SCs, but I did that quite a bit for the first 6 months just to try it out. You won't get that with the 3. So with the S you could utilize more supercharging and that would bring your effective monthly payment down a little more.

There is one downside that I will have and so would you; You are going to be paying about $90k after the vehicle and welfare (tax ;)). Putting that many miles on it will kill the resale, so just know that you are going to be losing more in the end by buying the more expensive car.

Ultimately, if I were to go back, I still would get the S.
 

coleAK

Member
Oct 23, 2018
875
580
Alaska
We had an S for 4 years then sold it and got a 3 about 2.5 years ago. If you want a sporty fun car, 3 hands down. The S is big, really really big. It is almost the exact footprint as my Lexus LX570. In the era before kids I had a 911 turbo, 911 GT3, audi RS4, e55 AMG, Ferrari, and two track cars (caterham seven, and insane SC, gutted, caged s2000). Our LR AWD 3 drives like a sports car, the S did not.

I’ll put it this way if the 3 were available when we bought the S there is no way we would have bought the S, even if they both were the same price.
 

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