Road Testing the Tesla Model 3

Source: Jay Zhan

Recently, I got the chance to drive my first Tesla, the relatively new Model 3. Least to say, it was a different experience altogether, and I know now more than ever Teslas have become somewhat of a desirable item, so let us not waste any time and get straight to it. The Tesla Model 3, does it prove the progression of the electric car, or does it show that we still have some work to do?

First, the numbers. The Model 3 has a staggering 0-60 time of 3.2 seconds, and it’s worth noting that this car pretty much weighs about two tons. Of course Tesla being Tesla, they have found some clever way to manage all the weight of the batteries that power this car, but that fact in my mind did nothing to eliminate the. 

In addition to this astonishing acceleration, the Model 3 comes with a choice of dual motors. Tesla claim that through the usage of these dual motors the amount of torque being sent to the front or the back can be digitally adjusted, ensuring much better cornering ability and possibly explaining how all this weight has been so well managed. I assure you that as an independent adjudicator solely focused on giving the car a fair test, I really wanted to put Tesla’s statements to the test, but I was not sure exactly how I could carry out of a test of these specific abilities without it being illegal, so because it seems likely I’ll give Tesla the benefit of the doubt.

Elon Musk and his underlings also would like to have you believe that this car has a range of 310 miles, but this figure I am a bit more willing to discredit. You see manufacturers, especially when it comes to the subject of economy, all like to fudge the numbers a bit in favor of making themselves look better. Electric car manufacturers in particular are more suspect to this practice that has become quite common in a market space where arguably range has become one of the top criteria for success. The general consensus among the public though is that no matter the range, those miles are better for the environment, so I suppose it is hard to be overly critical.

Probably the most impressive thing about this car, or any Tesla for that matter, is its technology. Everything about this car’s concrete performance is very impressive, but the thing that makes this car truly special is the experience you get driving this. This car comes with a 15 inch screen which is pretty much an iPad. Everything under the sun has been programmed into this, with more practical things such as a notepad all the way to more abstract things such as a navigation system which can show you where on Mars you are. Just the other day the owner of this car was taking me for a spin and when we pulled into a parking lot he was able to switch to some special mode and pretty much play Tesla’s equivalent of Mario Kart. I mean who ever thought of playing a car game in a car? 

Source: Evan Burger

You just get the feeling that when the designers started planning out this car they knew from the beginning that this was going to be something that was entirely different from any other car in every possible way. I mean think about this: Elon Musk originally wanted to name this car the Model E so that put together there would be the models S, E, and X. I’ll let you figure out the rest, but this is an example of the type of insight that every other manufacturer in the auto industry has failed to recreate. 

All of Tesla’s antics and irregularities when producing a car make for much more enjoyable research for me, but if you ask me as the conservative car lover that I am whether I would want to buy this car I would say no. While this car does contain all the excitement one could ask for, in recent years Tesla as a company seemingly has become a brand or a statement for your social media feed rather than a serious driver’s car. While I suppose that part of that may actually be an appeal to the company’s target audience, this fact doesn’t sit well with me. After sitting on the idea of what the Model 3 is meant for, I can come to the conclusion that it is more a piece of technology than an automobile, and in a world run by corporations like Apple and Amazon who doesn’t love that the Tesla is getting in with the times? 

The Model 3 is a representation of what the average car owner wants right now, and unfortunately for people like me, the average driver would rather have things such as semi-autonomous driving, an iPad to distract you when you do decide to drive, and so on. To me the car’s performance and overall quality feels more like a statement, and not one of true authenticity. For most of you reading this, my sentimental dribble won’t mean much to you, but the fact of the matter in that in today’s market it remains difficult to find something untainted. Many companies such as Pagani or Rimac somehow continue to do that today, but with Tesla being pushed into the spotlight they now have lost what those other companies once had. Now does this make a Tesla any worse to drive -no, but does it change what it means to own one? Well hopefully that the one question I’ve been able to answer. 


“Model 3 | Tesla.” N. p., 2019. Web. 31 Aug. 2019.

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