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No hatchback simply a point of differentiation?

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by Nuclear Fusion, Aug 12, 2017.

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  1. Nuclear Fusion

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    Did Tesla choose a sedan instead of a hatchback to differentiate from the Model S?
    Or was there a functional or economic reason?
     
  2. insaneoctane

    insaneoctane Member

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    There is lot's of comments from Elon / Tesla on this. As I recall, as the expanded the cabin and pushed everything "outward", particularly making for rear seat headroom, they lost the room/ability to make it hatchback. Plus, it makes a great place for the Model Y to fill.....
     
  3. Stolz25

    Stolz25 Member

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    Headroom for the back passengers and improved range because of better aerodynamics.
     
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  4. Thomas Edison

    Thomas Edison Member

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    ^
    This, Elon said many times that it's mainly because of rear headroom. The rear glass is so long as a result that they can't make it a hatch.
     
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  5. Sportstick

    Sportstick Member

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    The fundamental issues which drive almost all aspects of vehicle development are 1) cost, 2) weight, and 3) investment. At the car company where I worked for a few decades, we actually had "CWI" weekly meetings with reduction targets for all functional areas. We had some passenger car vehicle programs with hatchbacks/liftgates and others where it was considered but rejected. This design takes a vehicle program in the "wrong" direction for all three variables and requires a significant justification, such as in small hatchbacks being able to shorten the overall vehicle as an offset. In the case of the Model 3, it is likely that, in the process of managing the program to a cost target (similar philosophy to interior content reductions), these factors ruled out a liftgate very early in program definition.
     
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  6. Nuclear Fusion

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    I would have thought a sedan creates rotor & hence more induced drag
     
  7. gregd

    gregd Active Member

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    Ok, so since the Model Y will now be based on the Model 3, how will (can) it solve this problem?
     
  8. insaneoctane

    insaneoctane Member

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    The Y will most definitely be a crossover/hatchback.
     
  9. tchockie

    tchockie Member

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    Sounds like Franz confirmed to motor trend that the main reason for removal of the hatch hinge is to increase rear headroom clearance

    "The Tesla Model 3 has a trunk opening instead of a Model S-like hatch to delete the hatch-required crossmember, which shaves rear headroom."

    Exclusive: Tesla Model 3 First Drive Review - Motor Trend
     
  10. gregincal

    gregincal Active Member

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    By making the car taller.
     
  11. tescroft

    tescroft In Musk, we trust.

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    The problem with this decision is though, that most cars are only used by 1-2 people and luggage. So optimizing for 4 people and sacrifying trunk usage for that is suboptimal IMO.
     
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  12. Nuclear Fusion

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    Spot on
     
  13. Zaphod

    Zaphod Galaxy President (former)

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    But remember, I think part of the design decision also was because of the future of autonomous driving and possible use of the 3 in the Tesla Network for ride-sharing. This would have more people riding in the back seat.
     
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  14. Sportstick

    Sportstick Member

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    Converting a body design from hatch to trunk doesn't suboptimize trunk capacity, although some "mail slot" openings on some cars can limit access. Actually, depending on the trunk lid hinge system, there might be slightly more width as the more substantial struts needed for many hatch designs impinge on cargo space width. Note the narrowing forward in car, before the rear seat back of this 4 Series Gran Coupe. The cargo area could be just as deep with a trunk lid, but the size of the cargo items couldn't be more than average to fit in a trunk lid opening...satisfies most people.
     

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  15. jsmay311

    jsmay311 Member

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    Generally speaking, you're right. But it's the shape of the roofline that affects aero drag, not the placement of the the hinges and joints for the hatch/trunk.

    The actual shape of the Model 3 roofline looks very similar to a shortened Model S:

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    If there are only 1-2 people in the car you can just fold the rear seats down and fit a ton of luggage.

    But, still, I get the point and sympathize. I would definitely prefer a hatch myself. But from the photos I've seen of the production vehicle, at least it looks like the trunk opening has gotten significantly larger vs the prototypes.

    It's still not as big or practical as a hatch would be, but I also want the Model 3 to have decent rear passenger headroom and great aerodynamics/efficiency. So I am (reluctantly) accepting of the engineering/design trade-offs that were made in this case.
     
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  16. Uncle Paul

    Uncle Paul Member

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    The US market for sedans is far greater than for hatchbacks.

    Probably the reason for the sedan configuration, plus the upcoming Model Y will probably be a higher roof line with hatch back design to address that market.
     
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  17. Laban

    Laban Member

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    Or something like this:

    [​IMG]
     
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  18. No2DinosaurFuel

    No2DinosaurFuel Active Member

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    I am pretty sure this is the model y all you guys are looking for.
     
  19. insaneoctane

    insaneoctane Member

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    I must be the outlier to all the metrics. Give me a sedan and trunk any day.
     
  20. Nuclear Fusion

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    Yep, you make good points
     

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