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Preliminary EPA Data for Model 3 AWD & Model 3 P 2021 Released

AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
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So the preliminary document from the EPA for 2021 Model 3 AWD & Performance is released:

https://iaspub.epa.gov/otaqpub/display_file.jsp?docid=51235&flag=1

Covers 18" AWD and 20" Performance in detail. Note: it describes the details of the heat pump similar to the Model Y.

Summary (AWD):
1) No increase in battery capacity for AWD (yet)
2) For 18" AWD, increase in city miles & highway miles due to a 6% City efficiency improvement, and 3% Hwy efficiency improvement. Note this is not directly related to the heat pump since these are the standard UDDS and HWFET cycles, which would not have climate control on.
3) 2% reduction in RLHP at 50 mph, presumably due to the new Michelin MXM4 tire version.
4) LESS energy extracted from battery during test than normal (78.6kWh vs. 79.5kWh prior years). This hurts the range, but due to the efficiency improvements this 1.2% reduction, doesn't make much difference to range (still increases).

Summary (Performance):
1) The battery capacity of the Performance seems to have increased by about 3%. 80.8kWh extracted!!!! Not clear if this is "one-off" or deliberate. I think intentional, but not certain.
2) For Performance AWD 20", virtually zero improvement in efficiency.
3) Something weird happened on the recharge of the Performance (lots of wasted energy, ~3kWh AC). I think this will be addressed in later updated filings.
4) Pretty similar RLHP; only a fraction of a % lower.
5) I think it will probably end up with a rated range of about 315 miles. (Estimated) 16 mile improvement, half from battery capacity improvement, half from heat pump.

Summary, Both
1) Motor power specs have been changed and look weird, but not sure we should read much into that except MAYBE the AWD and P have the same rear motor now.
2) Details on heat pump outlined. No PTC heater at all; uses the compressor as a heater in very cold conditions.
3) There is a change to the battery energy density specs vs. 2020, but this is not of great significance, since the prior energy density numbers didn't work out correctly anyway, it is hard to compare. I think now 165Wh/kg is just correct (and it was close to this before!) Gives a capacity of 79.2kWh if you just multiply it out (480kg battery).

So, going from above, here is what I think has happened:

Summary of Changes for 2021:

1) It looks like AWD incorporated the motor efficiency improvements that existed on 2020 Model 3 Performance (remember it was more efficient than the AWD according to EPA testing, and got 10 more rated miles than the AWD, but was voluntarily reduced)
2) AWD also got improvements in tire efficiency.
3) Taking these factors together, for the same battery capacity as prior years, AWD (non-P) would have about 335 rated miles range, vs. prior year 322 (4% improvement).
4) The additional 18 miles range improvement, taking it to projected 353-mile range on the website, is from the scalar increase (due to the heat pump). The scalar looks like it will be about 0.746.

So the pareto, AWD, adding 31 rated miles, to go from 322 to 353:
1) 18 miles improvement due to scalar changes (heat pump); will not be "realizable" if not using climate control.
2) 13 miles improvement due to efficiency improvements (apparently taking on the Performance 2020 rear motor?)

Hypothetical Performance Pareto, adding 16 rated miles:
1) 8 rated miles added due to capacity increases. (Assuming they stick.)
2) 8 rated miles added due to heat pump (not realizable if not using climate control)

So, based on the Performance battery, it looks to me that there MAY be about 3% more (or more!) battery capacity that could be unlocked in future for AWD - but it depends on which batteries are being installed on these vehicles. We don't know. If that were done, and the 3% increase to 80.8kWh was made available for the AWD rather than 78.6kWh:

The Model 3 AWD 18" would have a range of about: 353*80.8/78.6 = 363 rated miles

(Note, this is the range the Performance 2021 WILL have already, assuming that the 80.8kWh "sticks", and you run it with 18" MXM4s - but with 20" wheels it's going to be rated around 315, probably, unless they voluntarily reduce the range)

I'm attaching my worksheet here, but please not this is preliminary and I can't vouch for all the numbers (I've filled in some guesses for the scalar to make things line up, for now). The fields in orange are not guesses, except for the scalar.

Screen Shot 2020-10-27 at 11.45.47 AM.png

 

AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
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San Diego
will not be "realizable" if not using climate control.

I should add: this is a weird way to phrase this. You're always going to do worse on efficiency if you use climate control. What I'm saying, of course, is that with the heat pump you will get improved range in cold conditions vs. a vehicle from prior years without a heat pump. BUT, that range you get when using climate control will invariably be much worse than what the EPA results suggest.

The only way to achieve these EPA ranges is to drive the cycles with the heat pump OFF. And then scale the results accordingly by the larger factor. So: Tesla could drive the same distance in the EPA test vs. last year, but claim a higher range, because they are using a larger scalar (legally). That's basically what they will be doing with the Performance (though they're also apparently adding more capacity). For the AWD, they actually drove a bit further than last year on the EPA cycle, but they were able to claim a % improvement that exceeded the actual achieved improvement, because they're using a ~0.75 scalar rather than ~0.7032.

We'll know more about the exact scalar value at some point soon.

The Adjustment Factor Tesla Uses to Get Its Big EPA Range Numbers
 
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AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
9,403
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San Diego
Assuming that they use the heat pump to heat the battery you should see improvements in cold driving with the 2021 models even if you don't use the climate control at all compared with the performance of the 2020 models without a heat pump.

That is likely true in some circumstances, which aren't too cold. Overall it's a more efficient vehicle and they'll be able to do a better job of scavenging and moving heat around than prior years, and the heat pump will allow them to do this more efficiently in conditions which are thermodynamically favorable.

However, as described in the document (there are a couple paragraphs explaining the efficiency and operation of the heat pump), the power draw of the heat pump can actually exceed that of the PTC heater that used to be installed! In that mode, it is operating effectively as a resistive heat source, as I understand the explanation. See the last paragraph below.

So I think the more likely scenario is that in very very cold conditions, it will just be able to heat up the battery (or whatever needs to be heated) faster!

In any case, in none of these cold conditions will you be able to remotely approach the EPA range, which was my main point. The heat pump just allows them to scale up the mileages they achieve on the cycle (because of the rules). And the heat pump is a real benefit in chilly conditions in the real world too - but it will consume anywhere from a little, to a whole heck of a lot of energy. It provides an additional degree of freedom in shuttling heat around which did not previously exist, and is able to make use of the large thermal mass of the battery.

Screen Shot 2020-10-27 at 12.54.34 PM.png

Screen Shot 2020-10-27 at 12.54.50 PM.png
 
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AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
9,403
11,281
San Diego
So the preliminary document from the EPA for 2021 Model 3 AWD & Performance is released:

(Just to clarify, though it's obvious: As is the norm, the testing of the vehicle is done by Tesla, not the EPA. The document is released by the EPA, after Tesla submits it to them with the test results, and Tesla tells the EPA what the range of the vehicle is. Right now this is "in process.")

Every now and again the EPA double checks the results.
 
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AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
9,403
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San Diego
it's going to be rated around 315, probably,

I know no one will believe me, but I actually came up with this 315 number by just plugging in the numbers from the EPA submission, then using the same scalar value as the Model 3 AWD (0.746), not by looking at the website...where it says the Performance range will be 315. :p I was actually unaware of the 315 rating for the 2021 Performance prior to just checking it a couple minutes ago...

Consilience! Lol.

I think these numbers will shift a bit once they are no longer estimates. The Performance did not have the same scalar as the AWD in 2020 (it used 0.725 instead of 0.7032), so there's not actually a reason to think it will have exactly the same scalar as the AWD. But it will be a larger scalar than last year's 0.725, for sure!

It's a calculated value using a formula, based on the results of the 5-cycle testing.

The prelim 5-cycle results are here, and you can compare the cold weather results to prior years:

https://iaspub.epa.gov/otaqpub/display_file.jsp?docid=51301&flag=1

The Performance test vehicle, which had 4029 miles on the odometer at the time of test, got 282 miles on the 20F FTP test. (Using 77.3kWh; it's always lower for a cold test)

Compare that to 2020 Performance, at 246 miles on the same test. (Using 73.27kWh.) This implies it is possible the cold weather performance of the batteries is improved in 2021 a little as well (it appears more energy can be extracted from the battery when the car is cold, as compared to 2020 vehicles - if the availability in 2021 had been the same as 2020, the available energy should have been ~74.5kWh, not 77.3kWh).

So, 274Wh/mi (2021) vs. 298Wh/mi (2020) in cold weather (20F)

https://iaspub.epa.gov/otaqpub/display_file.jsp?docid=49220&flag=1
 
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miimura

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Aug 21, 2013
6,165
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Los Altos, CA
Do you have an estimate of the number of miles or percentage improvement purely due to the MXM4 T1 revised tire? It's available on Tire Rack now and the T0 version is on clearance.
 

AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
9,403
11,281
San Diego
Do you have an estimate of the number of miles or percentage improvement purely due to the MXM4 T1 revised tire? It's available on Tire Rack now and the T0 version is on clearance.

I'm not an expert on this, @Zoomit might comment.

Just based on the RLHP (which is NOT dominated by only rolling resistance), it's a 2% reduction for 2021 vs. 2020. Gives you an idea at 50mph what the difference is.

You can also look up the static term in that equation (Coeff A). That's 34.9 (2021) vs. 38.7 (2020). That's a 10% improvement at very low speeds - but again, it might not be entirely determined by rolling resistance of the tires. The motors, bearings, lubrication pumps, etc., could all impact the low speed rolling resistance.

But in theory that should bound the improvement of the MXM4 - the T1 is less than 10% better than the T0. But that's for the rolling resistance component only. At speed, especially at 70mph, you're dominated by aero and the efficiency of the conversion of electrical energy to mechanical work. The tires matter less (but they of course do matter still).

But you definitely should NOT expect a 10% range increase with that tire change. It looks like maybe you'd get 1% or 2% more range at most, to me. I don't think the tire change is what led to the large (13 rated miles, not the 31 rated miles) range improvement for 2021.

I suppose it's possible that the 2021 AWD was made as efficient as the 2020 Performance with 18" simply because of the new tires...but I doubt it. It seems like Tesla would just use the 2020 Performance hardware in the AWD for this year (which would take them to 332), and then take another 1-2% improvement from the tires as well (which would take them to 335 or so). And then the rest is just the scalar increase due to the heat pump.

There's also the change in the aero wheel profile. That could help a little bit as well. So many factors.
 
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Knightshade

Well-Known Member
Jul 31, 2017
11,565
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So the preliminary document from the EPA for 2021 Model 3 AWD & Performance is released:

I have 3 thoughts on this info.

1) Thanks again for the excellent job you do posting, detailing, and explaining battery and efficiency info- excellent resource as always.

2) We've been told explicitly by Panasonic the new batteries since September have a 5% density increase. Any chance they took advantage of this NOT by increasing capacity in cars- but instead simply getting the same capacity with fewer cells? (thus enabling more total packs to be built which was the major limit on production AFAIK in Freemont?)

3)
Motor power specs have been changed and look weird, but not sure we should read much into that except MAYBE the AWD and P have the same rear motor now.

dog-say-what.jpg
 

Zoomit

Active Member
Sep 1, 2015
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@AlanSubie4Life thanks for @'ing me. I never would have seen this post in this forum. Did you mean to post it here?

Anyway, I'll address your wheel/tire question a little bit later. I'm reticent to say that the Performance batteries are different than the other batteries. I do expect that all the Long Range cars (3/Y) use the same batteries. I think it's just statical chance that the 2021 Performance models registered more capacity.

Looking at the data below, which I've collected from past testing for the EPA, it could have been said that the 2020 AWD cars got "hot" batteries and the 2020 Performance cars got lemons. I don't think that was true then, nor would I claim the opposite to be true for 2021 unless there's some collaborating evidence (paging @GigaGrunt).

20201027, M3Y EPA bat cap.png
 

AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
9,403
11,281
San Diego
We've been told explicitly by Panasonic the new batteries since September have a 5% density increase. Any chance they took advantage of this NOT by increasing capacity in cars- but instead simply getting the same capacity with fewer cells? (thus enabling more total packs to be built which was the major limit on production AFAIK in Freemont?)

It's hard to say. All I can say is the 80.8kWh from the Performance 2021 is the most I've seen extracted from a Model 3 pack, by far. The highest I have seen previously is 79.8kWh.

As @Zoomit says, I had forgotten it - the Model Y had a lot more energy extracted, for the same pack. I have no idea how that is possible. (Also a LOT less for the Model Y Performance 19"!!!)

I looked at the weights of the cars in the document and didn't see anything obvious, but I skimmed a lot of the document (in the interests of time) so I may have missed something which would give us a clue.

It may be that this is the same pack as always and there is no change yet in capacity. It's entirely possible (and what I thought originally when I saw the 353 miles number - it's not nearly high enough for a 5% increase PLUS the heat pump).

In short, I can't answer your question. :)


Yeah, it's really hard to say. All I can say is the Performance front motor is more powerful than the AWD front motor according to the docs. And the rear motor on the Performance is ever so slightly less powerful (190kW vs. 195kW). As I recall this is basically in line with what various people have found by monitoring the power draw in 0-60 runs.

As I said, I wouldn't really read too much into these numbers, since as far as I can tell, they've never really reflected reality. Compare to prior years:

2020 P/AWD 147/147 (F) 211/188 (R)
2021 P/AWD 131/98 (F) 190/195 (R)

Maybe the stats are closer to correct now? I have no idea. It's all random. As I said (for the third time?), I would not read anything into these numbers.

People should definitely start looking at their motor plates again, though. That was a great thread until it was locked. I blame you, lol. ;)


I never would have seen this post in this forum. Did you mean to post it here?

I thought it would be handy to new/prospective owners so I put it here. Maybe I should have put it in the Battery area though. Oh well. I plan on adding the data to the Constants sticky once we get a final document. Things were all messed up in this first EPA document so I just don't want to pollute the Constants until things settle out. I added links to this post in various related threads in the Battery section.

Thanks for your input! I had forgotten about the high energy content of the Model Y packs. I have no idea what is going on with the pack, but it doesn't seem to me that it necessarily contains denser cells. Or it might, but is not yet unlocked.

What I mostly latch onto here is the improved efficiency of the AWD, and the increased scalar due to the heat pump. Nothing apparently statistically significant on the pack capacity, I agree.
 
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Zoomit

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Sep 1, 2015
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Do you have an estimate of the number of miles or percentage improvement purely due to the MXM4 T1 revised tire? It's available on Tire Rack now and the T0 version is on clearance.
I'm not an expert on this, @Zoomit might comment.

Just based on the RLHP (which is NOT dominated by only rolling resistance), it's a 2% reduction for 2021 vs. 2020. Gives you an idea at 50mph what the difference is.

You can also look up the static term in that equation (Coeff A). That's 34.9 (2021) vs. 38.7 (2020). That's a 10% improvement at very low speeds - but again, it might not be entirely determined by rolling resistance of the tires. The motors, bearings, lubrication pumps, etc., could all impact the low speed rolling resistance.

But in theory that should bound the improvement of the MXM4 - the T1 is less than 10% better than the T0. But that's for the rolling resistance component only. At speed, especially at 70mph, you're dominated by aero and the efficiency of the conversion of electrical energy to mechanical work. The tires matter less (but they of course do matter still).

But you definitely should NOT expect a 10% range increase with that tire change. It looks like maybe you'd get 1% or 2% more range at most, to me. I don't think the tire change is what led to the large (13 rated miles, not the 31 rated miles) range improvement for 2021.

I suppose it's possible that the 2021 AWD was made as efficient as the 2020 Performance with 18" simply because of the new tires...but I doubt it. It seems like Tesla would just use the 2020 Performance hardware in the AWD for this year (which would take them to 332), and then take another 1-2% improvement from the tires as well (which would take them to 335 or so). And then the rest is just the scalar increase due to the heat pump.

There's also the change in the aero wheel profile. That could help a little bit as well. So many factors.
The road load coefficient data provided in the EPA submission can help us compare the relative efficiency of the respective wheels and tires. It's not possible to distinguish the effects of the T1 MXM4 tire separate from the refreshed Aero Cap. Plotting those coefficients shows that there is very little difference between the new tire and cap when compared to the original. The greatest effect is at slow speeds, while there's virtually no difference at high speed.

This is disappointing as I expected the new combination to have played a larger role in the increased range. At highway speeds, these coefficients indicate that the new wheel/tire combination would result in less than 1 Wh/mi savings.

20201027, M3 aero cap road load.png


20201027, M3 aero cap energy.png
 

AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
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This is disappointing as I expected the new combination to have played a larger role in the increased range.

Thanks for the summary. Yeah, they seemed pretty similar. I kind of view it the opposite way - Tesla made the vehicle fundamentally more efficient (by maybe 4%?), without playing tricks with the tires, which another manufacturer has done with a very efficient EV - making it have dangerously long stopping distance. Making the vehicle more efficient is good because it doesn't restrict you to a particular tire.

Maybe the T1s have better grip, and shorter stopping distance, for the same rolling resistance! That would be a huge improvement, since the T0s were arguably dangerously slippery (though way better than the aforementioned manufacturer).
 

Zoomit

Active Member
Sep 1, 2015
2,182
4,085
SoCal
Maybe the T1s have better grip, and shorter stopping distance, for the same rolling resistance! That would be a huge improvement, since the T0s were arguably dangerously slippery (though way better than the aforementioned manufacturer).
Yeah, I was thinking something similar.

I really expect the refreshed caps to have a better highway efficiency, due to very slightly better aero. I would have guessed 1% better, which would be apparent in those coefficients. But the charts show a 10% lower road load at 0 mph. This would be due to better rolling resistance from the tires.

The fact that that improvement disappears at higher speeds would imply the refreshed Aero Caps are less efficient than the originals, which I just find hard to believe.
 

AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
9,403
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San Diego
Awesome presentation/analysis of the data!

Any thoughts as to why EPA data is lagged on the SR+ refresh?

None of these documents are final yet, and not all have been posted. We’ll see all the 2021 docs posted soon and updated versions as well. I probably won’t go through them, but others can look them up when they show up. The critical data is pretty easy to find in the documents.
 

AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
9,403
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San Diego
Is this the final data?

View attachment 603127

It’s the same data as the original post.

Just take 33.7 and divide by (AC kWh / Range). From the table above.

Or just take the line of data below what you circled and calculate 33.7kWh/Ge / (x kWh/mi)


However, the detailed data file does allow you to calculate the scalar exactly. Divide the adjusted numbers in MPGe by the unadjusted ones. It’ll be 0.746 or so.
 

AlanSubie4Life

Efficiency Obsessed Member
Oct 22, 2018
9,403
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San Diego
However, the detailed data file does allow you to calculate the scalar exactly. Divide the adjusted numbers in MPGe by the unadjusted ones. It’ll be 0.746 or so.

It's actually 0.7472 from the datafile, not 0.746, FWIW. I picked a value that gave 353 rated miles. But the range is actually 353.5 rated miles with the preliminary results.

Again, to get MPGe, you take 33.705 kWh/Ge and divide by the AC efficiency (after adjustment of AC efficiency by the scalar - so you take the unadjusted AC efficiency (AC recharge energy divided by miles traveled), then you divide it by the scalar, then you use that resulting value as the AC efficiency). To get to the overall efficiency, you have to weight the city & highway by 55% and 45%, respectively.

For example, AWD did 494.54 city miles with 78.55 DC kWh and 88.54 AC kWh, so City Unadjusted is 179 Wh (AC)/mi

If you want unadjusted MPGe, just do the MPGe calc: 33.705kWh/Ge / 179Wh/mi = 188.26 MPGe

Divide by 0.7472 to get adjusted efficiency of 239.6 Wh (AC)/mi

To get City MPGe, you take 33.705 kWh/Ge / 239.6 Wh/mi = 140.67 MPGe (What shows on the sticker.)

As has been posted elsewhere, all of this is available on EPA website, fueleconomy.gov as of today. The efficiencies for the Performance align with the terrible AC efficiency they obtained (this may be updated at some point), but it also is the same as last year (though the range is updated):

Screen Shot 2020-10-28 at 9.58.24 AM.png


And just to see the 2020 Performance 18" vs. 2021 AWD 18" comparison directly (really not much change in the unadjusted numbers (the actual efficiency), though some improvement in the city as you might expect from the new tires).

Big improvements in the scaled numbers, because of the new scalar:
Screen Shot 2020-10-17 at 7.48.24 AM.png

Screen Shot 2020-10-28 at 10.15.35 AM.png
 
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AdamMacDon

Member
May 8, 2019
712
513
Victoria BC
Wait so if I understand this right, the new octovalve system allows the car to use waste heat from the battery to warm the cabin? This could be huge for efficiency in mild cold during long road trips.
 
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