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Talk me into or out of Model 3 Purchase (mostly range anxiety)

Which car is best for me

  • Model 3 SR+

    Votes: 25 37.3%
  • Wait for a Model 3 LR

    Votes: 38 56.7%
  • Kia Niro EV

    Votes: 3 4.5%
  • Wait a year and pay off the Acura first! EV pricing will go when rebates expire.

    Votes: 1 1.5%

  • Total voters
    67

mreynolds767

Member
Jul 11, 2019
728
392
Boston
Try running that case at 70 or 80% of the speed limit and see what it gets you. Slowing down usually helps a lot with range when you need it...

Good point I lowered the speed to 80% on some of the parameters that had me routing for a stop at the SC and it changed them to the 7-10% range upon arrival so yeah should be able to work around it even in the worst of weather.

Update: My sales advisor just did email me back that yes the LR RWD can be special ordered still off menu. No word about how long they take to make those but claims they are available now to order through him. Decisions, decisions,

Not sure if I can order the LR RWD with no AP, I may ask that to lower my initial cost and then spring for the AP later.

I believe the LR RWD has the full Premium Interior option so better than the SR+ interior ; it also would give me 120,000 mile battery/drive train warranty instead of 100K which is worth noting.
 
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acarney

Active Member
Jul 9, 2019
2,431
1,495
Richland, WA
Good point I lowered the speed to 80% on some of the parameters that had me routing for a stop at the SC and it changed them to the 7-10% range upon arrival so yeah should be able to work around it even in the worst of weather.

Update: My sales advisor just did email me back that yes the LR RWD can be special ordered still off menu. No word about how long they take to make those but claims they are available now to order through him. Decisions, decisions,

Mind emailing him back and asking if you can have AP disabled on the LR RWD and if that reduces the price? Rumors around here say that knocks $2k off the selling price. (I assume like all Tesla's the active safety features would still be there and obvious all the AP hardware)
 

mreynolds767

Member
Jul 11, 2019
728
392
Boston
Mind emailing him back and asking if you can have AP disabled on the LR RWD and if that reduces the price? Rumors around here say that knocks $2k off the selling price. (I assume like all Tesla's the active safety features would still be there and obvious all the AP hardware)

Just did, will let you know the response.
 

mswlogo

Well-Known Member
Aug 27, 2018
6,013
4,627
MA, NH
I'm in MA with AWD (Performance Stealth). I'd buy an AWD if I was buying today.

I can't tell you how many posts have been on these forums by new buyers and they buy a cheaped out base model and then realize this is such an amazing car and realize they really screwed up and should have went all in for LR, AWD or Performance. They realize this is a long term deal that they are all in and why on earth did they buy the cheapest model.

I got the MA rebate on AWD Performance, so I'm not sure what OP is talking about.

I drive in MA and NH. No question, I want AWD. OP has the right idea get Aero's for winter snow tires (regardless of AWD or RWD).

Keep in mind at 240 range you normally don't access the whole battery. Sure, on a long road trip you can charge to 90-100% and run it down to 10-20%, but you don't do that daily, typically. On a daily basis (opinions vary a lot on this) but I would want to run say no more than 30% to 80% on a daily basis. That's only 50% !! Let's be more conservative, say 20-90% (daily, that's a lot for every day). 70% of 240 is only 168 miles range. Now factor in Heat in winter and take say about 30% (that would be on a fairly cold day which doesn't happen every day but you can get a 2 week stretch around 0F in MA). So that leaves us 70% of 168 is 117 miles.

78-80 mph is pretty fast for MA. I hear lot of people say "everyone drives that fast". I don't think they do. I typically drive 65 mph and people are not zipping past me. Some certainly are but I'm passing plenty even at 65 mph. A lot of roads in MA are 55 MPH. You will take a good hit going 80 mph in a Tesla. Probably cost you 20 wh/mi (~8% hit). So now lets apply 92% of 117 is 107 miles.

So during a cold spell in MA doing 80 MPH and running the battery down 20% and charging to 90% you get ~107 miles.

What it boils down to is more range is more convenience. During the cold spells you might want to stop at super chargers or slow down.
Even running car down to 20% when it's 0F out and your stuck in traffic with the heat going is to risky for me.

Get the damn long range !!

AWD includes base AP, Premium interior and 310 miles range. You can get by with RWD in MA, but it's just a matter of how severe a conditions do you want to drive in to get from point a to point b. Also if you have a back up AWD car that might sway your choice (I do, but I still got AWD because of conditions in NH, I want at least one car in the household to be AWD). AWD is similar to more range, It's convenience, don't have to plan around the weather as much as I would with RWD. It's snows badly I work from home. But if your job is really demanding like a heart transplant Dr, maybe you want that AWD. I want me EV to impact my driving habits as little as possible.
 
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mreynolds767

Member
Jul 11, 2019
728
392
Boston
They changed the rebate earlier in 2019 ; gave out too many checks and the program ran out of money.
Used to be based on the starting model MSRP of 50K new rule is it is based on final sales price (excluding only tax) so no more would you get the MA rebate on the performance or even the AWD LR. That is definitely a fact.

I do understand what you are saying otherwise and many people do advise get as much range as you can.
My current plan now that the LR RWD is said to be available would be to go that route. I feel more comfortable pushing the budget for that than I do for the AWD model.
I am not too concerned about driving/weather conditions provided I change yearly to snow tires which I intend to. I don't travel up to NH where it can be worse, just southern MA.

And yes, if very bad weather I can work from home. Not a problem if snow but don't want to say I cannot drive to work cause it is too cold and windy out.
I spent 2 weeks in the Lofoten Islands (above the Arctic Circle) in Feb of this year and that trip convinced me on Winter Tires mattering much more than AWD. Granted the winter tires there are studded ; but the traction and stopping ease in the worst conditions amazed me as someone who has for many years owned AWD and 4WD cars and SUV's but kept them on all seasons always.

I did ask the sales agent a few questions: timing as well as ability to order White interior, drop off AP if I want, etc... on the LR RWD.
 
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jerry33

(S85-3/2/13 traded in) X LR: F2611##-3/27/20
Mar 8, 2012
19,623
22,228
Texas
I would like to think a car rated at 240 miles range could make a drive of 125 miles in every condition now and in 5 years but reading into it more, maybe that is not a safe assumption?
My Model S is now over six years old with 126K miles. It has no issue going over 200+ miles, 80% shows 222 miles. The M3 is more efficient than the Model S because it's smaller so has a reduced frontal area. For every condition, there are some conditions that are far worse than others. -20 with 15 cm of fresh snow on the ground will reduce the range by a lot. But I'd think that if you said any reasonable condition, you'd be very safe.

All that said, batteries are similar to memory or storage on a computer. There's no such thing as too much.
 

acarney

Active Member
Jul 9, 2019
2,431
1,495
Richland, WA
They changed the rebate earlier in 2019 ; gave out too many checks and the program ran out of money.
Used to be based on the starting model MSRP of 50K new rule is it is based on final sales price (excluding only tax) so no more would you get the MA rebate on the performance or even the AWD LR. That is definitely a fact.

I do understand what you are saying otherwise and many people do advise get as much range as you can.
My current plan now that the LR RWD is said to be available would be to go that route. I feel more comfortable pushing the budget for that than I do for the AWD model.
I am not too concerned about driving/weather conditions provided I change yearly to snow tires which I intend to. I don't travel up to NH where it can be worse, just southern MA.

And yes, if very bad weather I can work from home. Not a problem if snow but don't want to say I cannot drive to work cause it is too cold and windy out.
I spent 2 weeks in the Lofoten Islands (above the Artic Circle) in Feb of this year and that trip convinced me on Winter Tires mattering much more than AWD. Granted the winter tires there are studded ; but the traction and stopping ease in the worst conditions amazed me as someone who has for many years owned AWD and 4WD cars and SUV's but kept them on all seasons always.

I did ask the sales agent a few questions: timing as well as ability to order White interior, drop off AP if I want, etc... on the LR RWD.

NICE! Sounds like you're asking all the questions I have with it. Super curious to hear back! I agree with the above poster not to "cheap out", but that's with the mind set that a $40k+ car isn't already expensive. Coming from a $30k car moving up to a $40k car is already a stretch (SR+ with Blue/White is $42.5k after tax/destination and credits/rebates) so the budget is already stretched. Now going to a $48k to $50k car is just really hard. So maybe don't buy the Model 3 then you say.... well now I'm back to a gas based car, or another electric car that is WELL below the Model 3 in terms of features AND charges really slow, which makes a whole new set of problems.
 

OCR1

Active Member
Jan 28, 2018
3,756
4,101
Southern California
The LR RWD for $45,900 is the best value in the current Model 3 lineup. Based on everything the OP has said this is definitely the best car for him if price is not an issue. The car includes AP at this price and Tesla will not unbundle AP from this model. Only the SR can be purchased without AP.
 

jerry33

(S85-3/2/13 traded in) X LR: F2611##-3/27/20
Mar 8, 2012
19,623
22,228
Texas
I keep hearing this too, and I do (probably) agree with this a lot, but I wish there was some real world testing with hard numbers. If you could precondition the car at home on a level 2 charger and still leave with ~100% charge it would be really interesting to see the energy usage while maintaining a cabin temp of 72 or something at 60, 65, 70, 75 mph. Also, how powerful of a charger would you need at home to precondition the car and still be fully charged? Would a ~6kW charger (240v 24amp) be enough to keep the battery full and still run the heat for 20 minutes or something? Does precondition just warm the air in the cabin, or will it also bring the battery up to temp? Having a battery warm is a lot of mass and will take a while to cool down, especially if you're then drawing energy out of the pack while you go. If it's just warming the cabin air space up, then that will help some, but might cool down pretty quick in cold weather (20 to 30 degrees)

I have preconditioned the car lots of times at home (240V 33 amps). I can't see how 24 amps at 240 would change that much. The only time there is an issue is if you are using 120V. Then in very cold weather there isn't enough to do any charging, it will just keep the battery warm. Note that there are two facets of preconditioning. One is to set the charge timer to end at about the same time that you are starting to drive (this warms the battery), the other is to run the heater. In very cold weather you might want to run it for 30-45 minutes on HI so that the car is heat soaked. Depending upon how far you are driving (up to 50 km) and the temperature (-3 and warmer), you may not need to run the heater at all. Also the seat heater takes much less energy so you can set the temperature lower and use the seat and steering wheel heaters.
 
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mreynolds767

Member
Jul 11, 2019
728
392
Boston
NICE! Sounds like you're asking all the questions I have with it. Super curious to hear back! I agree with the above poster not to "cheap out", but that's with the mind set that a $40k+ car isn't already expensive. Coming from a $30k car moving up to a $40k car is already a stretch (SR+ with Blue/White is $42.5k after tax/destination and credits/rebates) so the budget is already stretched. Now going to a $48k to $50k car is just really hard. So maybe don't buy the Model 3 then you say.... well now I'm back to a gas based car, or another electric car that is WELL below the Model 3 in terms of features AND charges really slow, which makes a whole new set of problems.

Yeah ; we are in the same boat. I know for a Tesla $40K is a bargain but for me it was near the top of my comfort level on what to spend a car that I will drive 30,000 miles a year on. I go through cars too fast with my current arrangement to have it make sense regardless of if I can afford it or not.
Was so excited when I first heard about the coming of a $35K electric option, fine with customizing it to my liking and getting to 40 ; now warming up to even spending 45-46 to get more than I expected but yeah 50K is more than I want to spend on my commuter car I will wear out faster than most and my wife will not be pleased if I tell her I need an over $50,000 car so is kind of a magic number for me as well as for the state Rebate option which is serving just to speed up my decision. Of course having said all that the LR RWD is still going to be over $50K when tax is added along with my paint choice and white seats so not a perfect situation for me but the best I can come up ; rebates factored in it is back to the upper 40's.

For family road trips / weekend driving the larger SUV my wife drives is probably going to make a better choice anyway, we already are using that over my car.

If I cannot get the LR RWD delivered in time for the MA rebate cutoff ; think I would still go with that model but would prefer it deliver to me in Nov-Dec in that case instead. (wonder if they ever sell them installed with Winter Tires on the Aero wheels instead?)

My current Acura SUV sipping premium is not the right answer for me, that much I know.
The most fiscal responsible answer would be a Prius or similar hybrid and not a Tesla so clearly my motivation is not 100% financially driven but my goal is to change my car to an Electric 3 and not have the scenario cost me more monthly than I am currently paying. With the gas savings it definitely shouldn't.
 

Saghost

Well-Known Member
Oct 9, 2013
8,217
7,007
Delaware
For family road trips / weekend driving the larger SUV my wife drives is probably going to make a better choice anyway, we already are using that over my car.

It'll be interesting to see if you still feel that way in six months. Many folks enjoy driving the Tesla enough more that it becomes the choice for road trips, too. Autopilot helps with that, of course...

Oh, and if your wife gets to drive your new Tesla a few times, you might lose it to her and be driving the SUV again anyway. :)
 

jebinc

M3 LR AWD w/FSD and white premium interior
Jun 19, 2019
3,407
1,684
Seattle area
They changed the rebate earlier in 2019 ; gave out too many checks and the program ran out of money.
Used to be based on the starting model MSRP of 50K new rule is it is based on final sales price (excluding only tax) so no more would you get the MA rebate on the performance or even the AWD LR. That is definitely a fact.

I do understand what you are saying otherwise and many people do advise get as much range as you can.
My current plan now that the LR RWD is said to be available would be to go that route. I feel more comfortable pushing the budget for that than I do for the AWD model.
I am not too concerned about driving/weather conditions provided I change yearly to snow tires which I intend to. I don't travel up to NH where it can be worse, just southern MA.

And yes, if very bad weather I can work from home. Not a problem if snow but don't want to say I cannot drive to work cause it is too cold and windy out.
I spent 2 weeks in the Lofoten Islands (above the Arctic Circle) in Feb of this year and that trip convinced me on Winter Tires mattering much more than AWD. Granted the winter tires there are studded ; but the traction and stopping ease in the worst conditions amazed me as someone who has for many years owned AWD and 4WD cars and SUV's but kept them on all seasons always.

I did ask the sales agent a few questions: timing as well as ability to order White interior, drop off AP if I want, etc... on the LR RWD.

Glad you here you are now going for the "off menu" LR, if not the "on menu" LR AWD.
 
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mreynolds767

Member
Jul 11, 2019
728
392
Boston
It'll be interesting to see if you still feel that way in six months. Many folks enjoy driving the Tesla enough more that it becomes the choice for road trips, too. Autopilot helps with that, of course...

Oh, and if your wife gets to drive your new Tesla a few times, you might lose it to her and be driving the SUV again anyway. :)

I think AutoPilot would freak my wife out and she will ban me from using it with her or kids in the car! But hope she will fall in love driving it and we can down the road replace her car with the Y.
 

Zaxxon

Supporting Member
Dec 11, 2012
4,652
21,412
Colorado
If you're driving 30k miles per year, this comparison gets even easier. The gas savings (especially over premium!) should be huge. Rough math at $3.50/gal premium, 30 mpg, and 250 Wh/mi at $0.15/kWh says over $2,000 per year in fuel savings.

It'll be interesting to see if you still feel that way in six months. Many folks enjoy driving the Tesla enough more that it becomes the choice for road trips, too. Autopilot helps with that, of course...

Oh, and if your wife gets to drive your new Tesla a few times, you might lose it to her and be driving the SUV again anyway. :)

FWIW, this is me. We got the 3 last year. Took it on a road trip (2500 miles to North Dakota, family of 4, car seats, backpacks, multiple suitcases, etc--all fit no problem).

My wife, uhh, liked it. So the plan was to replace her XC90 with the Y.

Then the X Raven refresh came, bringing that vehicle to the same range as the 3 LR RWD. And they made AP standard, and lowered the base price.

She now drives an X. So beware. The 3 can be a gateway drug. Granted, Colorado rebates sure help a lot, as did the full federal tax credit for the 3 and half for the X.

I think AutoPilot would freak my wife out and she will ban me from using it with her or kids in the car! But hope she will fall in love driving it and we can down the road replace her car with the Y.

If you just use it for highway lane keeping, it's extremely solid and is a godsend in heavy traffic.
 
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dmurphy

Woof.
Dec 7, 2018
3,463
4,671
New Jersey - Morris County
Good point I lowered the speed to 80% on some of the parameters that had me routing for a stop at the SC and it changed them to the 7-10% range upon arrival so yeah should be able to work around it even in the worst of weather.

Update: My sales advisor just did email me back that yes the LR RWD can be special ordered still off menu. No word about how long they take to make those but claims they are available now to order through him. Decisions, decisions,

Not sure if I can order the LR RWD with no AP, I may ask that to lower my initial cost and then spring for the AP later.

I believe the LR RWD has the full Premium Interior option so better than the SR+ interior ; it also would give me 120,000 mile battery/drive train warranty instead of 100K which is worth noting.

The LR RWD is the best of all worlds. The LR buys you the range you want, *and* the premium interior features that you’d regret not having down the road. I’m pretty sure the LR RWD can be ordered without AutoPilot if you want to hold off and save a few dollars up front. I couldn’t imagine living without it, but if the choice is a Tesla or no Tesla, then go for it!

You’ll be thrilled - that commute is of absolutely zero concern for the LR RWD.

The best part of that plan is that you get all the physical features, and if you decide down the road that you want AP or even FSD, it’s just a credit card swipe away. Never had a car that flexible before!

My advice (worth what you paid for it - nothing!) — call that sales advisor back and book the order before it’s possible to overthink it!

Edit: PS - we own a Model 3, and a Buick Enclave. Road trips are in the Model 3 now. It’s that good.

Edit: PPS - I see above you’re worried about “going through” cars too quickly at 30k miles a year. That makes the Model 3 case even stronger ... it’s not like a traditional car where anything past 100k miles is on borrowed time. This baby will just be warming up for you! I expect 350-500k miles on a Model 3 to be the norm, not the exception.
 

acarney

Active Member
Jul 9, 2019
2,431
1,495
Richland, WA
The LR RWD is the best of all worlds. The LR buys you the range you want, *and* the premium interior features that you’d regret not having down the road. I’m pretty sure the LR RWD can be ordered without AutoPilot if you want to hold off and save a few dollars up front. I couldn’t imagine living without it, but if the choice is a Tesla or no Tesla, then go for it!

You’ll be thrilled - that commute is of absolutely zero concern for the LR RWD.

The best part of that plan is that you get all the physical features, and if you decide down the road that you want AP or even FSD, it’s just a credit card swipe away. Never had a car that flexible before!

My advice (worth what you paid for it - nothing!) — call that sales advisor back and book the order before it’s possible to overthink it!

Edit: PS - we own a Model 3, and a Buick Enclave. Road trips are in the Model 3 now. It’s that good.

We're trying to figure out what the price is without AP, and if that's even possible. I do think that is absolutely the best bet if people can afford it. That larger battery comes with faster charging too, so instead of 20 minutes at a supercharger you might only spend 15 minutes there and because of the extra range it might be 10 minutes. That really does get down to the time frame of stretch your legs and get a drink/bathroom break. Do we have any data on lead times for the Long Range RWD? I assume a store can't/won't just software limit an AWD down to just RWD, right?
 

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