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rpiotro

Member
Aug 18, 2021
114
66
42°57'34"N 88°3'35" W
Hello everyone. I just took delivery of a model 3 SR+ on 08/12/21. Just really, really happy with the car.

A little background. I bought a new 2020 Nissan Leaf in February. Last fall I was looking at cars to replace my 2014 Infiniti Q50 Hybrid come spring. It had all the toys. 360HP, 402 Ft. Lb. torque. 0-60 in 5 seconds flat. Averaged 29 MPG. It gave me a taste of what electrons can do. I loved that car! But, it was seven years old and was the car I had owned the longest ever so maybe time to look at something new. Before that I had a 2009 Pontiac G8 GT so I was used to a little bit of performance.

My situation changed over the winter. The wife retired and I cut back on my business. I only put about 6K miles on the Infiniti in 2020. When I saw one year old Leaf's with very low mileage selling for about $25K I thought a basic EV may be the way to go. I started looking at cars in earnest in February and noticed the local Nissan dealer had two new, leftover loaded 2020 SL+'s for sale. $46,400 MSRP. $6,000 in factory rebates,$5,900 in dealer discounts and $7,500 federal tax credits brought the out of pocket to $27,000 plus fees. I drove the car and thought "This is kinda nice, I could live with this and the price is right". My wife has a 2012 Mercedes SLK 350 (R172) so we still have a summer fun car so I bought it. Had an electrician friend install a 240V 40 amp charging circuit in my garage and good to go. Showed it to family and friends and everyone was impressed with the power and quiet smoothness.

Not to be outdone, 10 days later my son shows up with a new Model Y (yeah he got it that fast). It really knocked my socks off but no way was I going to spend $50K on a car I was going to drive 6,000 miles per year.

Fast forward to June. Giving the kinds of cars I had been driving the Leaf was starting to get a little boring. I decided to see what was available in a Tesla and noticed the model 3 SR+ at MSRP of $39,900 checked all of the boxes. I thought "Well, if I could get at least $22,000 for the Leaf in trade I could swing this without needing to get a loan or tapping my nest egg". When I put in the info for the trade I was surprised at the number so I went ahead with the ordering process. After sending in pictures etc. for the trade they came back with $25,900. Only $1,100 less than I paid. Where can you drive a car for six months for $1,100?

So, here I am looking forward to filling my head with info on Tesla cars. I am still quite active on the Q50 forum after having made a few friends and with my long time automotive background and seven year experience with the Q50 I still have something to contribute there.

No, I 'm not going to bother with a picture. It looks just like all of the other white model 3's out there. :)
 

chrstna4

Member
Sep 3, 2020
209
275
Seattle
Welcome! I was never someone who took road trips but I love driving my Model 3 so much I’ve now put over 20k miles on it in 13 months. I’m always looking for a reason to take the car for a spin. I’ve planned tens of potential road trips on A Better Route Planner (look into that app/website if you haven’t already). I just finished a 2400 mile trip down the West Coast on Monday and I’d start a new trip today, if I could. Don’t be surprised if you regularly get itchy to go for a drive. Enjoy!
 

Darmie

Super Member
Supporting Member
Jan 13, 2016
2,080
1,381
Clear Lake TX.
Awesome story. Pop up some pictures. I've been in the Tesla world since 2017 with our 75RWD Model S. You will continue to love your model 3.
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Nov 28, 2018
10,874
12,597
Riverside Co. CA
Hello everyone. I just took delivery of a model 3 SR+ on 08/12/21. Just really, really happy with the car.

A little background. I bought a new 2020 Nissan Leaf in February. Last fall I was looking at cars to replace my 2014 Infiniti Q50 Hybrid come spring. It had all the toys. 360HP, 402 Ft. Lb. torque. 0-60 in 5 seconds flat. Averaged 29 MPG. It gave me a taste of what electrons can do. I loved that car! But, it was seven years old and was the car I had owned the longest ever so maybe time to look at something new. Before that I had a 2009 Pontiac G8 GT so I was used to a little bit of performance.

My situation changed over the winter. The wife retired and I cut back on my business. I only put about 6K miles on the Infiniti in 2020. When I saw one year old Leaf's with very low mileage selling for about $25K I thought a basic EV may be the way to go. I started looking at cars in earnest in February and noticed the local Nissan dealer had two new, leftover loaded 2020 SL+'s for sale. $46,400 MSRP. $6,000 in factory rebates,$5,900 in dealer discounts and $7,500 federal tax credits brought the out of pocket to $27,000 plus fees. I drove the car and thought "This is kinda nice, I could live with this and the price is right". My wife has a 2012 Mercedes SLK 350 (R172) so we still have a summer fun car so I bought it. Had an electrician friend install a 240V 40 amp charging circuit in my garage and good to go. Showed it to family and friends and everyone was impressed with the power and quiet smoothness.

Not to be outdone, 10 days later my son shows up with a new Model Y (yeah he got it that fast). It really knocked my socks off but no way was I going to spend $50K on a car I was going to drive 6,000 miles per year.

Fast forward to June. Giving the kinds of cars I had been driving the Leaf was starting to get a little boring. I decided to see what was available in a Tesla and noticed the model 3 SR+ at MSRP of $39,900 checked all of the boxes. I thought "Well, if I could get at least $22,000 for the Leaf in trade I could swing this without needing to get a loan or tapping my nest egg". When I put in the info for the trade I was surprised at the number so I went ahead with the ordering process. After sending in pictures etc. for the trade they came back with $25,900. Only $1,100 less than I paid. Where can you drive a car for six months for $1,100?

So, here I am looking forward to filling my head with info on Tesla cars. I am still quite active on the Q50 forum after having made a few friends and with my long time automotive background and seven year experience with the Q50 I still have something to contribute there.

No, I 'm not going to bother with a picture. It looks just like all of the other white model 3's out there. :)


Welcome to TMC!

This is a pretty friendly website / forum, with quite a few helpful people. Hope you stick around a while.
 

Andy7

Member
Dec 16, 2019
85
42
NJ
Congratulations on the Model 3 and welcome to the site. I love mine, especially on several hour trips. I have not done anything like chrstna4 has done, unfortunately. Look around the site for suggestions of what to do and what to get. Think about adding a spare tire to your trunk, if you go out of town.

All the best.
 

rpiotro

Member
Aug 18, 2021
114
66
42°57'34"N 88°3'35" W
So, my son came by yesterday to take my car for a ride. He said wow, what a difference from his model Y. The lighter weight really shows. He liked the driving dynamics big time. I'm convinced I made the right decision getting the model 3 SR+. When I ordered it my thinking was a relatively light weight, rear drive sports sedan was very appealing.

At 3648 lbs It is more that 400 lbs lighter than my Q50 hybrid and my G8 GT. 602 lbs lighter than the dual motor M3 and about 700+ lbs lighter than the Y. Heck, Even my wife's Mercedes SLK 350 (R172) is only about 200 lbs lighter. The other Tesla models only have an edge in straight line acceleration. Light weight is faster everywhere else.
 

Ktmer

New Member
Sep 6, 2021
3
0
83221
New owner with charging question. I have previously owned 3 or 4 Ford escapes. I live in a very rural area. On my fords, it would give me distance to empty ot DTE. I tested the DTE on many different occasions. Sometimes by accident sometimes on purpose. Remember. I live in a rural area. Gas stations can be anywhere from 50 to 100 miles apart. All that being said, I knew I could go about 20 more miles when my DTE hit 0. Like I said, had this happen several times on several different fords and it didn't matter if I was going 75 mph with a head wind, in 10 degrees, I could always count on 20 more miles. So here is my question, if my tesla says 1% or 5 miles left, is there any wiggle room? Or once it goes to 0, does it just stop dead in the middle of the road? Not wanting to test this car.
 

chrstna4

Member
Sep 3, 2020
209
275
Seattle
New owner with charging question. I have previously owned 3 or 4 Ford escapes. I live in a very rural area. On my fords, it would give me distance to empty ot DTE. I tested the DTE on many different occasions. Sometimes by accident sometimes on purpose. Remember. I live in a rural area. Gas stations can be anywhere from 50 to 100 miles apart. All that being said, I knew I could go about 20 more miles when my DTE hit 0. Like I said, had this happen several times on several different fords and it didn't matter if I was going 75 mph with a head wind, in 10 degrees, I could always count on 20 more miles. So here is my question, if my tesla says 1% or 5 miles left, is there any wiggle room? Or once it goes to 0, does it just stop dead in the middle of the road? Not wanting to test this car.
Here’s a video that shows how the car behaves once you hit 0 miles left:
 

JohnnyMa

Member
Apr 23, 2021
107
105
Texas
So, my son came by yesterday to take my car for a ride. He said wow, what a difference from his model Y. The lighter weight really shows. He liked the driving dynamics big time. I'm convinced I made the right decision getting the model 3 SR+. When I ordered it my thinking was a relatively light weight, rear drive sports sedan was very appealing.

At 3648 lbs It is more that 400 lbs lighter than my Q50 hybrid and my G8 GT. 602 lbs lighter than the dual motor M3 and about 700+ lbs lighter than the Y. Heck, Even my wife's Mercedes SLK 350 (R172) is only about 200 lbs lighter. The other Tesla models only have an edge in straight line acceleration. Light weight is faster everywhere else.
I had a Model Y loaner when my 3P was in for warranty work and it definitely rode differently. I'm sure I'd get used to it but the 3 just feels way more dialed in in terms of driving feel and suspension - feels perfect for me. I'm used to performance suspensions on the stiffer side so it's great.
 

bjrosen

Member
Apr 19, 2019
328
340
Westford MA
New owner with charging question. I have previously owned 3 or 4 Ford escapes. I live in a very rural area. On my fords, it would give me distance to empty ot DTE. I tested the DTE on many different occasions. Sometimes by accident sometimes on purpose. Remember. I live in a rural area. Gas stations can be anywhere from 50 to 100 miles apart. All that being said, I knew I could go about 20 more miles when my DTE hit 0. Like I said, had this happen several times on several different fords and it didn't matter if I was going 75 mph with a head wind, in 10 degrees, I could always count on 20 more miles. So here is my question, if my tesla says 1% or 5 miles left, is there any wiggle room? Or once it goes to 0, does it just stop dead in the middle of the road? Not wanting to test this car.
Tesla claims that there is a buffer that will allow you to go a few miles after it reaches 0, I wouldn't want to test it though. Even if there is a lot of range left it's really bad for the battery to take it down to 0 let alone less than 0. Running an ICE car on fumes doesn't hurt the gas tank, running a battery down does degrade it.
The advantage that an EV has is that you start everyday with a full charge (actually 80% for daily driving, charge to 90% for road trips, don't charge to 100% unless you have an LFP SR+). With an ICEV you normally drive it until the tank is low and then go to the gas station, with an EV most of the time your battery is pretty full so you'll never run out of charge for local driving. For a road trip you'll need to plan, use A Better Route Planner which is far better than Tesla's route planner. As long as you know where the Superchargers are along your route you'll never have a problem, just plan your charging stops so that you don't run the battery below 10-20%. The Supercharging stops are your bathroom stops also so you won't be wasting any time. In my experience the car will get enough charge while you are in the bathroom so there won't be any waiting around. One more thing, set the Supercharger as your destination if the car hasn't done that for you itself, the car will preheat the battery when it's heading for a Supercharger, a preheated battery charges twice as fast as a cold battery. For a one way trip the Tesla navigation software adds Supercharger stops automatically but for anything more complicated you'll have to do it yourself because Tesla's primitive navigation system has no concept of multiple stops. What I do for trips is I put all of my stops, including Supercharger stops, into Google Calendar. Google Calendar is automatically loaded into the car by the Tesla app so you can pick your destinations by selecting it on the calendar entry.
 
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chrstna4

Member
Sep 3, 2020
209
275
Seattle
Tesla claims that there is a buffer that will allow you to go a few miles after it reaches 0, I wouldn't want to test it though. Even if there is a lot of range left it's really bad for the battery to take it down to 0 let alone less than 0. Running an ICE car on fumes doesn't hurt the gas tank, running a battery down does degrade it.
The advantage that an EV has is that you start everyday with a full charge (actually 80% for daily driving, charge to 90% for road trips, don't charge to 100% unless you have an LFP SR+). With an ICEV you normally drive it until the tank is low and then go to the gas station, with an EV most of the time your battery is pretty full so you'll never run out of charge for local driving. For a road trip you'll need to plan, use A Better Route Planner which is far better than Tesla's route planner. As long as you know where the Superchargers are along your route you'll never have a problem, just plan your charging stops so that you don't run the battery below 10-20%. The Supercharging stops are your bathroom stops also so you won't be wasting any time. In my experience the car will get enough charge while you are in the bathroom so there won't be any waiting around. One more thing, set the Supercharger as your destination if the car hasn't done that for you itself, the car will preheat the battery when it's heading for a Supercharger, a preheated battery charges twice as fast as a cold battery. For a one way trip the Tesla navigation software adds Supercharger stops automatically but for anything more complicated you'll have to do it yourself because Tesla's primitive navigation system has no concept of multiple stops. What I do for trips is I put all of my stops, including Supercharger stops, into Google Calendar. Google Calendar is automatically loaded into the car by the Tesla app so you can pick your destinations by selecting it on the calendar entry.
Everything you said and I will add: put the PlugShare and ChargePoint apps on your phone. It’s one more layer of safety for long trips. I’ve put over 22k miles on my car since July 2020 driving all over the west coast. I’ve gone to tops of mountains, camping in the woods, down Hwy 1 where the charging stops are finally close enough to make it from north to south, and I’ve never had range anxiety except about 5 minutes the time my next plotted charging stop from Crater Lake was “temporarily closed” when I finally got signal to the navigation. Even then, I made it to the next supercharger with plenty to spare (mostly because I plan trips to arrive at the next supercharger with 10-15%) and had many PlugShare options I could’ve used. It just took me 5 minutes to assess my options then everything was fine.
 

Ktmer

New Member
Sep 6, 2021
3
0
83221
Tesla claims that there is a buffer that will allow you to go a few miles after it reaches 0, I wouldn't want to test it though. Even if there is a lot of range left it's really bad for the battery to take it down to 0 let alone less than 0. Running an ICE car on fumes doesn't hurt the gas tank, running a battery down does degrade it.
The advantage that an EV has is that you start everyday with a full charge (actually 80% for daily driving, charge to 90% for road trips, don't charge to 100% unless you have an LFP SR+). With an ICEV you normally drive it until the tank is low and then go to the gas station, with an EV most of the time your battery is pretty full so you'll never run out of charge for local driving. For a road trip you'll need to plan, use A Better Route Planner which is far better than Tesla's route planner. As long as you know where the Superchargers are along your route you'll never have a problem, just plan your charging stops so that you don't run the battery below 10-20%. The Supercharging stops are your bathroom stops also so you won't be wasting any time. In my experience the car will get enough charge while you are in the bathroom so there won't be any waiting around. One more thing, set the Supercharger as your destination if the car hasn't done that for you itself, the car will preheat the battery when it's heading for a Supercharger, a preheated battery charges twice as fast as a cold battery. For a one way trip the Tesla navigation software adds Supercharger stops automatically but for anything more complicated you'll have to do it yourself because Tesla's primitive navigation system has no concept of multiple stops. What I do for trips is I put all of my stops, including Supercharger stops, into Google Calendar. Google Calendar is automatically loaded into the car by the Tesla app so you can pick your destinations by selecting it on the calendar entry.
Wow! Thanks for your response and excellent tips! When you say charging for long trips, only go to 90%? Unless you have a LFP SR+. What is that and why only 90%?
 

bjrosen

Member
Apr 19, 2019
328
340
Westford MA
For nickel batteries, used in the LR models and some of the SR+ models (they are in the process of switching over to LFPs in the SR+), charging past 90% degrades the battery faster. The old charts that I've seen show that the number of charge cycles is double at 90% vs 100%, battery life is further improved if you set the max to 80%. That's not true for LFP batteries, Tesla recommends that LFPs be charged to 100%.
For local driving 80% is more than enough, you will never need more than that. For road trips 90% is almost always good enough. There may be situations where there isn't a Supercharger where you need it, then it's OK to charge to 100% as long as you start driving soon after it's charged but always look at ABRP before you take a trip like that to see what you really need.
In my experience it's bladder size not battery size that determines how often you need to stop at a Supercharger. It's not healthy to drive more than a couple of hours at a time without a break, when you have a Tesla you do those breaks at Superchargers so that you can kill two birds with one stone. One more thing on Supercharging, don't top up your battery, that's a waste of time. In a 15 minute stop you can add 100-150 miles of range, that's just enough time to go to the bathroom and maybe grab a donut or drink. You need enough range to make it to the next Supercharger or to your destination with a 20% cushion. If you have the destination in your navigation the car will tell you how much range it will have when you get there. I've found that estimate to be slightly conservative but that's because I drive with a light foot, if you are a jack rabbit then you should add a fudge factor.
One final road trip tip. If you are doing a multiday trip pick hotels with charging, Tesla shows them on their route planner and you can also find them on Plugshare.
 
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rpiotro

Member
Aug 18, 2021
114
66
42°57'34"N 88°3'35" W
Everything you said and I will add: put the PlugShare and ChargePoint apps on your phone. It’s one more layer of safety for long trips. I’ve put over 22k miles on my car since July 2020 driving all over the west coast. I’ve gone to tops of mountains, camping in the woods, down Hwy 1 where the charging stops are finally close enough to make it from north to south, and I’ve never had range anxiety except about 5 minutes the time my next plotted charging stop from Crater Lake was “temporarily closed” when I finally got signal to the navigation. Even then, I made it to the next supercharger with plenty to spare (mostly because I plan trips to arrive at the next supercharger with 10-15%) and had many PlugShare options I could’ve used. It just took me 5 minutes to assess my options then everything was fine.
Charge Point is a mixed bag. My local Festival Foods has a level ll charger that is free for the first two hours. The problem is that it is 32 amps and is shared if there are two cars plugged in. Not very useful. I have the app on my phone.

GM is having all of its dealers install level lll Charge Point chargers at all of its dealerships but they have a single post with choice of a CHAdeMO or CCS connection. You can buy a CHAdeMO adaptor from Tesla that is very expensive but they have announced a combo J1772 and CCS adaptor for less money. I'd consider one of those when they become available.

One of my clients is a Buick/GMC dealer. I was able to unlock it with my app so I assume I could have used if I had the correct adaptor. I'm sure it would have cost something and I'm guessing the dealer has its own cards. BTW, neither Buick nor GMC have any EVs. Yet.

You should also consider installing PlugShare on your phone as chrstna4 mentioned. It allowed me to authenticate at a free charger at the town hall in Fish Creek Wisconsin. It took away my anxiety of making it to the next supercharger. It turns out I didn't need it after all but peace of mind. Had an excellent frozen custard just across the street while I waited.😎
 

rpiotro

Member
Aug 18, 2021
114
66
42°57'34"N 88°3'35" W
Wow! Thanks for your response and excellent tips! When you say charging for long trips, only go to 90%? Unless you have a LFP SR+. What is that and why only 90%?
Battery longevity. You can go to 100% without harm if you are on the road, will continue to drive immediately after charge and really need the cushion. However, that last 10% can take quite a while. The charge rate goes down as the SOC goes up.

I have a client that is a 190 mile round trip. I will use my home charger to go to 100% and schedule it to complete at the same time I plan on leaving. That 100% is just enough to get there and back. Come winter I may need to make a short stop at a supercharger to make it home. Very minimal impact on longevity. Otherwise I set it to 80% and that charge will last for days under my normal use.
 

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