Today we tested the true leader among electric cars, the backbone of sales in the segment, nothing more and nothing less than the Tesla Model 3, a highly successful model and a true driver of the electric market.
This model, with more than 2,400 units sold so far this year, practically doubles its immediate rival, the small Fiat 500e, a model that, although it is also electric, does not have the packaging or philosophy of this American.Although with a very particular aesthetic, the Tesla Model 3 is the most convincing car of cars within the electric segment in our country.
In this case we are dealing with the Dual Motor version with integral traction by double motor and 350 CV, but perhaps what is more interesting is that it is also the Extended Autonomy version, in this case with a useful 75 kWh battery that on paper They ensure a maximum autonomy of 626 km.
Some arguments that allow it to claim this sales success, but before entering this section, we must analyze what this Model 3 offers us aesthetically and functionally.It is a relatively large sedan with excellent habitability for four passengers and all their luggage.
It is a simple but elegant saloon with three volumes, 4.7 meters long, 1.44 meters high and 1.85 meters wide. This width, together with its wheelbase of 2.87 meters, ensure a more than adequate habitability.
Tesla‘s minimalist approach is already known to all and in this Model 3 it remains faithful to its approach. In terms of design, it has a dashboard with clean shapes, clear seats and a commitment to quality, which at least in this unit seems much higher than that of the Model Y that we already tested at the time.Tesla’s unmistakable design offers certain genius, but also some aspects that could be improved at the functionality level.
The front seats are spacious and above all comfortable, they do not hold excessively, but this is not a vital approach for a vehicle of this philosophy either.
In front we have the minimalist dashboard of the brand with the huge 15-inch central screen and which is the true nerve center of the model.This screen concentrates all the control, management and leisure controls of our Tesla, a bet as innovative as it is, in some aspects, not very functional.
With it and two buttons on the steering wheel we will manage all the elements of the vehicle, from the air conditioning, to the adjustment of the mirrors and going through other aspects such as electrical management, driving modes or even opening the trunks. It also has a complete integration of entertainment elements, with various applications for games, popular payment video platforms, as well as other entertainment applications. Undoubtedly, some ideal toys for those who want to be really distracted while waiting to recharge the vehicle.
In general, it is a somewhat particular system of operation, but once its management method is learned, it is fast, with good visualization and good tactile precision. What we don’t like so much is that this system so concentrated on the central screen excessively diverts attention from what is really important, which is traffic. In return, it has a relatively efficient voice management system.The rear seats are very comfortable for two passengers, with room for legs and head, an attractive panoramic sunroof, but fairly fair in width for three occupants.
The second row of seats has a very clear space, both for the legs and for the head. The negative comes from the total width, especially the gap between the doors and especially the shapes of the backrests, which allow two exterior passengers to be well accommodated, but because of the width it would be uncomfortable in the case of having to place a third occupant in the central square.
In terms of cargo space, the Model 3 has two trunks, a conventional 425-liter rear one in a fairly open area and a double hole under the floor to store the charging cables, plus a second cargo space under the front hood that adds another 118 liters, also ideal for cables or any other object, such as the puncture repair kit, for example.
Dual Engine Extended Autonomy
Due to performance and autonomy, this is the most logical and functional option of the Model 3
Mechanically we have already told you, this version is the Dual Motor, with an engine in the front and another in the rear that add a power of 350 CV and ensure effective all-wheel drive.
In addition, this Model 3 allows two driving modes; the Relax in which the throttle response is more progressive and calm and the Standard which is much more reactive to our commands. It also has three types of retention, one, the most useful for its ability to recover energy, very incisive that even allows the car to stop, another that allows to take advantage of the inertia of the march and a third that allows the car to move when we release the pedals.Performance-wise, this version is very notable in its role. Quiet and comfortable in rational use and with efficient features and frame when needed.
The frame for its part continues to be a classic of the brand, with a very low center of gravity, very well plumb, with a suspension with little travel, but with an enormous capacity to isolate the undercarriage. Without a doubt, it offers a very high degree of comfort without losing a certain dynamism and driving efficiency.Traveling with the Model 3 can be a delight, as long as we are disciplined with its autonomy ranges and with the planning of its loads.
As for the semi-autonomous Autopilot, it must be recognized that the system has a lot of potential, but currently it seems to be very limited by factory updates, which makes it very conservative and intrusive in the face of any incident with traffic, whether with possible exits from lane or distance keeping.