Motor Trend Model 3 vs Bolt vs Leaf

MelindaV

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#2
Motor Trend release a new article comparing the three 'affordable long range EVs', and sounds like they caught Elon's anti-selling virus. Essentially, the Bolt and Leaf beat the 3 in everything (except 0-60 and handling and UI and styling)
They claim the Bolt and Leaf are more comfortable for humans, they say the Model 3 doesn't have enough regenerative braking to count, the glass roof is a negative, the rear seat height is too shallow (and include a photo of a tall person with knees raised in a Model 3, but no photos of the other two cars) and the Leaf's autonomous features are better (they use Mobileye).
But at the same time, say it isn't a fair comparison and the Model 3 should be being compared to a 330i instead.
overall it felt very much like they were talking down the Model 3. Vaguely mentioned Tesla's supercharging advantage, don't think they mentioned at all OTA updates, didn't really go into it being a totally different style (IE attractive) vehicle than a compact hatch / SUV style vehicle besides saying it had an advantage in it's aerodynamics that they others didn't have (stated in such a way that it was unfair to compare the because obviously the Bolt and Leaf could not get that low because they have a taller height).

http://www.motortrend.com/cars/tesl...s-nissan-leaf-sl-vs-tesla-model-3-long-range/

disclaimer, I did read this before 5am, and maybe was being overly crabby about them not being more unbiased in their comparisons.
 

danzgator

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#3
Motor Trend release a new article comparing the three 'affordable long range EVs', and sounds like they caught Elon's anti-selling virus. Essentially, the Bolt and Leaf beat the 3 in everything (except 0-60 and handling and UI and styling)
They claim the Bolt and Leaf are more comfortable for humans, they say the Model 3 doesn't have enough regenerative braking to count, the glass roof is a negative, the rear seat height is too shallow (and include a photo of a tall person with knees raised in a Model 3, but no photos of the other two cars) and the Leaf's autonomous features are better (they use Mobileye).
But at the same time, say it isn't a fair comparison and the Model 3 should be being compared to a 330i instead.
overall it felt very much like they were talking down the Model 3. Vaguely mentioned Tesla's supercharging advantage, don't think they mentioned at all OTA updates, didn't really go into it being a totally different style (IE attractive) vehicle than a compact hatch / SUV style vehicle besides saying it had an advantage in it's aerodynamics that they others didn't have (stated in such a way that it was unfair to compare the because obviously the Bolt and Leaf could not get that low because they have a taller height).

http://www.motortrend.com/cars/tesl...s-nissan-leaf-sl-vs-tesla-model-3-long-range/

disclaimer, I did read this before 5am, and maybe was being overly crabby about them not being more unbiased in their comparisons.
The Model 3 won, so I didn't take it as negatively as you did. They didn't say that the other cars were more comfortable overall, just the back seat. That is understandable because you are comparing hatchbacks to a sedan. Of course they're going to be easier to get in and out of and there's going to be more headroom, by definition. I think their Model 3 digs were fair, and they dug into the other two as well.
 

MelindaV

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The Model 3 won, so I didn't take it as negatively as you did. They didn't say that the other cars were more comfortable overall, just the back seat. That is understandable because you are comparing hatchbacks to a sedan. Of course they're going to be easier to get in and out of and there's going to be more headroom, by definition. I think their Model 3 digs were fair, and they dug into the other two as well.
it won from 1 of the 3 reviewers.

the headroom in the rear seat of the Model 3 is ½" more than the Leaf and less than a ¼" less than the Bolt and the Model 3 has more back seat width than either of the other two.
 

danzgator

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#5
it won from 1 of the 3 reviewers.

the headroom in the rear seat of the Model 3 is ½" more than the Leaf and less than a ¼" less than the Bolt and the Model 3 has more back seat width than either of the other two.
I guess you could look at it that way, but to me, the author's opinion closes the article. He gives a nod to the two other chuckle heads' opinions, but he concludes the article by praising the Model 3. He doesn't even say what reviewer #2 thought was the winner. It says he was a "Bolt fan," but "thought better of the Leaf" (than reviewer #1?). The only thing #2 liked was exterior styling, but then goes on to say that the interior, screen, and range are crap. Is his winner Bolt or Leaf? It could even conceivably be the Model 3 because it flat out doesn't say.
 

garsh

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#6
... the rear seat height is too shallow (and include a photo of a tall person with knees raised in a Model 3, but no photos of the other two cars)
Well... it is. The other two are tall hatchbacks. Plus, the "skateboard" battery design raises the interior floor - I think Nissan has the best battery packaging approach for maximizing interior volume. It keeps the floor lower at the footwells.

the Model 3 doesn't have enough regenerative braking to count,
They have actual data that shows that the other two cars have stronger regen.

Anyone who thought this article was negative for the Tesla needs to read it a little closer. These sorts of points are valid. But in the end, Kim says:

"The Model 3 leans into the future with a reckless glee you cannot avoid noticing. Its infotainment and autonomous systems are still a work in progress, but new software features are being beamed in seemingly every night. Its Autopilot 2 is crazy ambitious; will it work without lidar? Electric cars are often dismissed for seeming soulless; the Tesla fills the void with human fantasies. You may need to talk yourself into a Bolt or a Leaf; you need to talk yourself out of paying the premium for this Model 3."

Boom! <mic drop/> :)
 
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Dogwhistle

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#7
I really think Motor Trend is holding out for the promised $35,000 Model 3. They still view the current $60K version as another expensive toy for early adopters, and not a direct competitor for the EV for everyone. They know the game changer is the base car, I expect that one to win MT COY next year, and win hands down these comparos.
 

3Victoria

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It keeps the floor lower at the footwells.
I think you will find that their battery pack swells under the seats, and that there is still batteries under the foot well, so this argument doesn\t hold. The 3's pack also 'swells' under the rear seats because of ancillary circuits.
 

garsh

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#9
The 3's pack also 'swells' under the rear seats because of ancillary circuits.
True, but not as much.

Also, the Leaf's pack is again higher at the front seats, and then non-existent in the front footwell. That also provides more footroom and a more upright seating position in the front seats. Nissan did screw up though - there is no room for rear seat passengers' toes under the front seats, compromising some of that rear footroom.

Anyhow, I don't mean to be presenting the Leaf as some great inspired design. Just pointing out that there are tradeoffs, and the Leaf trades aerodynamics and battery capacity for a more upright seating position with better legroom.
 

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#10
I don't have much to add here other than seeing the Bolt in person in California. I was very underwhelmed and honestly its not in the same class. The only comparable are that it's an EV with decent range.
 

eye.surgeon

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#11
Tesla is paying the (calculated) price of launching with the M3 version that costs dramatically more than the touted 35k price. Personally I think that was a PR mistake that may or may not be worth the revenue long-term. Another mistake shining through is their premature divorce from mobileye which remains superior to AP2 in most respects.

A high floor makes the rear seats less comfortable, no way around that and a fair critique.

Overlooking the massive advantage of the supercharging network is a rookie mistake made by motor journalists who have never owned an EV. Without that, the competition are just city cars.
 

garsh

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#12
Overlooking the massive advantage of the supercharging network is a rookie mistake made by motor journalists who have never owned an EV.
To be fair, Kim mentions the supercharger network twice (within a fairly short article - I think that's pretty good). Also, Kim makes clear in the article the he's had experience with EVs (though he doesn't say whether he personally owned one - I suspect not). He really does seem to be a proponent of EVs, and really likes the Model 3. At least, that's the impression that I get.
Tesla is paying the (calculated) price of launching with the M3 version that costs dramatically more than the touted 35k price. Personally I think that was a PR mistake that may or may not be worth the revenue long-term.
I agree that it's hurting, and that it's hurting more than I thought it would. This article kind of makes it clear that they *really* wanted to compare the $35,000 version of the car to the other two. I think I'd rather see a comparison between the Model 3 and a BMW 340i.

Hopefully, we'll see even more positive press once the base config is made available.
 

Rusty

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#13
Remember MT has to keep all manufacturers as happy as reasonably possible and still provide adequate reviews. I think the article is as good as expected. Model 3 on top without making the other two seem worthless (because they are without a supercharger network).
 

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#14
I saw my first Bolt this past weekend. I didn’t get a chance to drive it. First impression - small and dinky.

I am excited that GM has a long range ev. It just seems like the other manufacturers, including GM, are afraid to put out an ev that is amazing. It feels like they are holding back because they are afraid of canabalizing their existing offerings. When is there going to be an electric Corvette?
 

garsh

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#15
It just seems like the other manufacturers, including GM, are afraid to put out an ev that is amazing. It feels like they are holding back because they are afraid of canabalizing their existing offerings.
The problem is that they just can't figure out how to bring down battery costs. They don't have the foresight to...
  1. decide to build their own batteries
  2. create a battery factory that is large enough to more than double the entire world's production of batteries.
Because of that, they're stuck with expensive batteries. And that results in expensive cars. And they try to minimize the amount of batteries to keep the costs reasonable. So you need a small, light car to get decent range out of a small battery. And that immediately screams "econobox" to them, unfortunately.

They'll come around, eventually (apparently in 2020 for most manufacturers ;))
 

eye.surgeon

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#16
̶̶̶I̶̶̶t̶̶̶ ̶̶̶j̶̶̶u̶̶̶s̶̶̶t̶̶̶ ̶̶̶s̶̶̶e̶̶̶e̶̶̶m̶̶̶s̶̶̶ ̶̶̶l̶̶̶i̶̶̶k̶̶̶e̶̶̶ ̶̶̶t̶̶̶h̶̶̶e̶̶̶ ̶̶̶o̶̶̶t̶̶̶h̶̶̶e̶̶̶r̶̶̶ ̶̶̶m̶̶̶a̶̶̶n̶̶̶u̶̶̶f̶̶̶a̶̶̶c̶̶̶t̶̶̶u̶̶̶r̶̶̶e̶̶̶r̶̶̶s̶̶̶,̶̶̶ ̶̶̶i̶̶̶n̶̶̶c̶̶̶l̶̶̶u̶̶̶d̶̶̶i̶̶̶n̶̶̶g̶̶̶ ̶̶̶G̶̶̶M̶̶̶,̶̶̶ ̶̶̶a̶̶̶r̶̶̶e̶̶̶ ̶̶̶a̶̶̶f̶̶̶r̶̶̶a̶̶̶i̶̶̶d̶̶̶ ̶̶̶t̶̶̶o̶̶̶ ̶̶̶p̶̶̶u̶̶̶t̶̶̶ ̶̶̶o̶̶̶u̶̶̶t̶̶̶ ̶̶̶a̶̶̶n̶̶̶ ̶̶̶e̶̶̶v̶̶̶ ̶̶̶t̶̶̶h̶̶̶a̶̶̶t̶̶̶ ̶̶̶i̶̶̶s̶̶̶ ̶̶̶a̶̶̶m̶̶̶a̶̶̶z̶̶̶i̶̶̶n̶̶̶g̶̶̶.̶̶̶̶

It just seems like other manufacturers can't make any money on an EV that is amazing.
fixed it for you. Tesla hasn't figured that out yet, either. Time will tell.
 

BigBri

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#17
Motortrend harping on the 60 grand sticker is getting annoying. The majority of the increase is the battery which adds some warranty and acceleration but other then that the 35k version will be the same car (or 40k if you add Premium). It's still very competitive vs the bolt and leaf.
 

3Victoria

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#18
A high floor makes the rear seats less comfortable, no way around that and a fair critique.
I am not understanding -- the parameters below are very close to one another, and in fact the 3 seems to win on roominess of its seating.

Bolt Leaf Tesla
F Headroom 3 1 2
R Headroom 1* 2 1
F Legroom 3 2 1
R Legroom 1 3 2
F Shoulder 2 2 1
R Shoulder 2 2 1
Totals: 12 12 8
* - less than or equal to 0.3" difference is considered a tie.


That said, I think the comparisons are worthless, because the Model 3 is not really competing with these cars.

From article: Bolt/Leaf/3
HEADROOM, F/R39.7/37.9 in41.2/37.2 in40.3/37.7 in
LEGROOM, F/R41.6/36.5 in42.1/33.5 in42.7/35.2 in
SHOULDER ROOM, F/R
54.6/52.8 in54.3/52.5 in56.3/54.0 in
 

smak

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#19
The fact is, as of right now, the supercharging network puts Tesla cars in a totally different category than any other EV.

It should be in a category called "long range EV', and despite the amount of miles the other cars can go, they should be in "short range" EV
 

Don

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#20
While I wait for my M3 (base plus premium), I've decided on a leaf to replace the first of my two polluters. Getting the leaf this February and hopefully the M3 later in 2018. I've decided on the leaf because I'm located in Ontario and the $14k rebate is questionable if the government changes in June 2018. The SV leaf will cost me ~$27k Canadian (or ~$21K USD) after the rebate. It isn't perfect but it is a lot more perfect than my ICE.