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Some (possibly) new thoughts after a month with a M3

Discussion in 'The UK and Ireland' started by Evilted, Jan 8, 2020.

  1. Evilted

    Evilted Member

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    There are a number of "one month in" reviews on this forum, I've read them all and now it's my turn.
    I'm trying not to repeat things that have been written before but hope to provide some new thoughts or at least different perspectives on old topics.

    Background: Comparisons and opinions are from a 45yr old male who spent the last 3 years in a 2016 Audi TTS on 20" alloys. That's a pretty good baseline to compare my new M3P experience.

    I collected my car, when they said, where they said, and had no issues to report or get fixed. Panel alignment is passable. Fit and finish inside is good. No squeaks yet.

    Thoughts:
    1) I thought the TTS was one of the best balanced cars wrt handling / comfort. It prioritizes poise and handling (sublime 10/10) over comfort (6/10). I expected the M3P to handle worse and ride about the same. I was right and wrong. The handling isn't as good, the steering is unbelievably vague and has little feel and on high speed roads (see point 2). Its more highly sprung, less damped suspension makes it feel less planted at speed but it rides over bumpy roads in a far superior way. There's a little thunking through potholes but nothing like the spine shattering experience of the Audi at a pothole. A different, but winning, balance.
    Scores? Handling 8/10, comfort 8/10

    2) Steering. Car came set to "comfort" this is so light you can't feel anything. Set to standard and it stiffens up just a little too much. You get a better sense of the road on standard but it's either too light or too heavy. I've settled on standard as the lesser of two evils

    3) Wow factor. Don't underestimate how much attention this car gets (especially in white with dark alloys). It seems to be a halo car for anyone aged 12-18! I got slightly embarrassed by the attention waiting to pick up my son from his secondary school.
    On the flip side you soon discover that the guided tour of the car (for friends not school children!) is quite tricky. You both get in and you say "erm, so that's it really" and proceed to showing off fart-mode

    4) Wipers. Recent update has made them as good as any other auto-wipers. Don't forget that pressing the left stalk button does a single wipe and will trigger the system in to action

    5) Updates. It really does get better overnight. (See point 13)

    6) There is a great, cheap, Wireless charging pad on amazon (c. £30) which is an easy replacement for the wired solution as standard. It comes with some reasonably pleasing rubber cubby hole mats too

    7) In the winter, if you drive like you would a sporty petrol car you'll use 1.8 miles of indicated range every mile on average. Best not to think about miles of range and set your battery display to a percentage or you get range anxiety. Talking of which...

    8) Range anxiety is a thing but you get over it once you realise that a 280 mile charge (if you still have the battery set to miles) is only good for 180 miles.

    9) Long distance journeys are perfectly achievable. You just need to plan. There are good planners recommended in this forum

    10) There is wind noise. It's most noticeable at motorway speeds. More than the Audi but on balance (given the lack of engine noise) probably on a par. I'm going to experiment with a decibel meter because I'm weird. I'll let you know the results.

    11) Passengers in the back seat who are susceptible will get car sick. None of my family have ever suffered but wife and son 2 both felt sick after a moderate journey. This has been replicated.

    12) There are only 3 responses to the 0-60 demo. Squeals, swearing and a third which requires a trip to Next to buy new underwear.

    13) There are so many nice touches in the software. For example, in the morning the nav will automatically assume you're going to work (or the location of your first calendar meeting) and navigate you there. In the evening it automatically navigates home
    I was surprised you couldn't read text messages on the screen. Last week a software update added that. Happy Christmas from Elon.

    14) Google Traffic - I had this in the Audi but the Tesla implementation has traffic for more roads. Audi is only motorway and main A road. Tesla is just about every road. Routing and rerouting is faster than any other system I've tried. Almost instant.

    15) Entertainment. Netflix is impressive if you ever sit around in your car (I don't). Spotify is awesome.

    16) The rear window demister sucks

    17) The front window fogs up just after you set off even with climate on. It clears but I don't understand why this happens. It's unique to the Tesla. minorest of issues though.

    18) One-pedal driving and column shifting is so simple and obvious that when you do drive another car it really does take 5 seconds of mental retraining to go back to the dark days when you had silly things like key-fobs, handbrakes, gear sticks and on/off buttons to worry about

    I think I'll stop now. You're probably bored.
     
    • Like x 18
  2. inikkor

    inikkor Member

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    Doesn't the TTS like every other Audi have the tendency to understeer? I wouldn't give it a 10/10...
     
  3. hmy7k

    hmy7k Member

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    I don’t think the handling of the M3P is terribly inspiring, it’s got loads of grip but there is a lot of weight and it’s not inspiring, like wise a TTS like any Audi is uninspiring on a windy road. Both cars provide very little feedback.

    The model 3 has great performance but it’s not a car at its best on B road.
     
  4. ewoodrick

    ewoodrick Well-Known Member

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    7) Wait until summer. It tends to suck to buy an EV in winter. (but at least you aren't surprised in November) Just expect 30% degradation in cooler temps.
     
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  5. kevuwk

    kevuwk Member

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    Came from a BMW with hydraulic assisted steering and thought standard steering was ridiculously light. Sport steering added some “weight” to it which got it closer to the BMW but there is just no feedback through it
     
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  6. Wooloomooloo

    Wooloomooloo Member

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    Fair enough review. I was surprised by your steering comment, that Standard is too stiff. I have my Performance in sport mode for steering all the time, and love it. I think it gives reasonable feedback, for a modern car. I was raised driving a manual and no power steering, so I'm generally sniffy about steering.

    The wipers are infinitely better now than a year ago. When I got mine in 2018, the auto wipers were at best useless and at worst dangerous.

    I owned a TT back in the day (2002) - loved that car.
     
    • Like x 1
  7. tess19

    tess19 Member

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    If you used the wipers manually, they are fine. I think we are spoilt with auto wipers with modern cars. The ariel atom make do with a piece of cloth.
     
  8. ewoodrick

    ewoodrick Well-Known Member

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    And to think that mine work awesomely, all by their selves in auto.
    I thought that manual - off was only a setting for going through car washes.
     
  9. drewpost

    drewpost Member

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    I’ve noticed this with my wife in the front seat. Getting car stuck nearly all the time whereas this never happened in our old cars. I don’t drive like a maniac either. I wonder what it is about a Tesla.
     
  10. Daverh

    Daverh Member

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    It hit me this evening how nice it is not to have the instrument cluster in your line of sight while you're driving in the dark
     
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  11. Jason71

    Jason71 Active Member

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    I have noticed the "teenage boy" phenomenon. Where I live most people have no idea what my M3 is but 12-16 year old boys go mental when they see it.
     
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  12. MrAliG

    MrAliG Member

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    When we test drove a Model X my wife and daughter both got car sick and were very nervous about getting it.

    I realised it was due to a combination of me driving the car more aggressively than normal to get a feel for it in the short time available and also, I think, to regeneration. Until you get used to regen the car tends to surge as you accelerate then slow sharply as you take your foot too quickly off the accelerator. As you get more used to it you start to be gentler with the accelerator and I have had no issue with car sickness after the initial few weeks.
     
  13. VanillaAir_UK

    VanillaAir_UK Moderator UK and Ireland

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    Interesting final observation. Maybe temporarily turn regen to low to see if things improve?
     
  14. Evilted

    Evilted Member

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    The wife thinks it's related to the glass roof. I think it's to do with the disconnect between motion and noise. In an ICE there is an audible cue as to what is about to happen with regards to acceleration and deceleration so as a passenger your body prepares itself for that. There is no cue in an EV so your body is sloshed around without preparation.
    It doesn't affect the driver because they are in control so can prepare by virtue of the movement being under their control.
     
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  15. Evilted

    Evilted Member

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    It's a matter of perspective. Sure the TTS doesn't handle as well as an Ariel Atom but for the sake of a comparison I was really saying _if_ the TTS was a 10 then comparatively the M3 is an 8.
    All just my humble opinion and obviously a very crude measure.
     
  16. Evilted

    Evilted Member

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    I did think about noting that I hadn't tried Sport. I assume that reduces assistance even more which is why I hadn't tried it. Perhaps I need to give it a go.
    I still love the TT, but it sits in the garage and I haven't once been tempted to get it out. I do occasionally open the garage to look at it because....well, it's a very handsome car and the M3 just can't compete in those stakes for me.
    The ugly duckling looks were my biggest concern, I like to walk out to a car that looks good. The proportions of the M3 don't work for me but I have to say it is more attractive in performance guise than I thought it was going to be.
     
  17. Torokruger

    Torokruger Member

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    My son (27) who drives a BMW M140i (also has had Golf R 7.5 and other fast cars ) took my M3 out for a blast with my settings on and came back white as a sheet (felt distinctly queasy ) and said the car would not be for him as he actually felt sick driving it ???
    After changing regen to low and a few other tweaks he took it back out and said the difference was like 'night and day' and now he wants one.
    Now you could argue that he got used to it (no noise, absurd acceleration etc.) but I would argue that thank goodness the car is so customisable that there are settings to placate all.

    He is still not having mine though !
     
  18. CMc1

    CMc1 supercharge.info editor

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    There’s plenty of people on YouTube measuring decibels within the car. I’d check those first before you waste your time duplicating. There are kits to lower the wind noise.
     
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  19. VanillaAir_UK

    VanillaAir_UK Moderator UK and Ireland

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    I find road noise rumble into rear passenger area pretty intrusive too - wouldn't be surprised if thats a contribution to some passenger issues. Night and day difference between front and back seats and all normal according to Tesla - thankfully I do not sit there very often.
     
  20. Daverh

    Daverh Member

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    I had a few moments at Christmas as we drove under lights that were strung across the street. My brain just wasn't prepared for the light to continue past the "top" of the windscreen and it made me a bit dizzy.

    My wife sat in the back for a trip around the lake district on new years day and said that the screen made it harder for her to focus on the road ahead and made her feel a bit unwell (but I think it was the bottle of wine she had the night before) :)
     
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