So many are trying to make the 3 a car that it isn't

Rich M

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#1
I'm seeing a lot of posts lately with people concerned about things like ride quality and utilitarian uses of the Model 3, and I'm wondering why this is so.
Tesla took it's electric double-barrel, aimed squarely at the BMW 3 series sedan and blew it away. Matching or exceeding its features with a strong emphasis on performance and driving dynamics.
But then I see posts asking how many bikes/car seats/2x4's/sheets of drywall can be crammed into it, how much trailer it can tow, or even thinking about leaving a paved road and think "why?". That is not what it's designed for. The Model 3 has less front hip room and less rear leg room than a Honda Civic for comparison sake. And when was the last time you saw BMW 3 series towing any kind of trailer?
I'm worried a few people are trying to hammer a square peg into a round hole here just because it's the first reasonably priced long-range EV available.

  • If the Model 3 didn't exist and 2018 was the year you intended on buying a brand new compact luxury sedan, with vehicles like the BMW 340i, Audi A4 (Sport package), and Infiniti Q50 Sport on your short list, then Dilly Dilly! The Model 3 is right down your alley.
  • If your primary goal is a really fun commuter or second vehicle that's also capable of a decent sized weekend getaway with 2-3 adults, while also feeling completely un-flustered following any of the aforementioned competition around the Nurburgring - you're going to love the Model 3 too!

If you fall much outside of the above two cases, want the Model 3 to ride like a Chevy Malibu, Camry LE, or 90's Buick, need to tow anything, leave pavement, live an outdoorsy or DIY lifestyle, carry a lot of large objects with you everywhere, have frequent rough/snowy/muddy/gravel roads, more than occasional bitter cold, and are trying to make this the only car in your household, then you are outside the key demographic for this type of car and will probably wind up a bit frustrated or disappointed through no fault of the car itself.

TL;DR: Buy a Model 3 because you were already planning to buy a new compact luxury sport sedan in 2018 and it blows away the competition. Don't buy a Model 3 just because it's an EV if you would otherwise be shopping for an SUV/Wagon/Pickup/Minivan or anything with a cushy ride.
 

SoFlaModel3

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#2
There is actually a very simple explanation for the complaints.

98% of current owners bought the car sight unseen.

For better or worse they threw down $50-60k on something they had likely never seen before and it wasn’t what they were hoping for.

We all have the choice to hold our place in line until we check boxes that are important to us like seeing it, sitting in it, and potentially driving it.

I did have the opportunity to check all 3 boxes though I didn’t have them as requirements to proceed for me personally either.
 
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garsh

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#3
We all have the choice to hold our place in line until we check boxes that are important to us like seeing it, sitting in it, and potentially driving it.
This is important.

I personally am not all that picky about my vehicles. I bought a Nissan Leaf sight-unseen, because I really, really wanted an electric car. I bought my previous minivan sight-unseen too - again, I figured "it's a minivan, it'll be good enough". So now I want a Tesla, and there's one available that's more affordable to me, and I know it'll work just fine for me.

But, if you're a more... discerning individual, then by all means, DON'T order the vehicle before you get a chance to at least test-drive one. It's not like you lose your place in line - when you receive your invitation to configure, you should still get your car 3-4 weeks after configuring, even if you hold off on configuring for several weeks or months.
 

MelindaV

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#5
For better or worse they threw down $50-60k on something they had likely never seen before and it wasn’t what they were hoping for.
BUT anyone who has gotten to the point of paying the $50-$60k have seen the photos and watched the reveal event(s) and know this is not the vehicle to carry 2x4s and Sheetrock
 

danzgator

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#6
On your car seat criticism, I didn't try to make the car what it wasn't. This is what Musk tweeted:

 

danzgator

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#8
Support?

I won't regurgitate the thread here, but I've tried many slim base combinations in person and by checking dimension. None seem to work due to hip room. Three Concorro car seats, at 15.5" wide conceivably could fit without using the Latch connections, but without physically putting three in the car, it's hard to know if it work for sure. If it does work, the Concorro is only good to 40 lbs, so then you have another issue from when the child is 40 lbs to when they are ready for a booster.

https://teslaownersonline.com/threads/model-3-with-kids.5636/
 

Dan Detweiler

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#9
Support?

I won't regurgitate the thread here, but I've tried many slim base combinations in person and by checking dimension. None seem to work due to hip room. Three Concorro car seats, at 15.5" wide conceivably could fit without using the Latch connections, but without physically putting three in the car, it's hard to know if it work for sure. If it does work, the Concorro is only good to 40 lbs, so then you have another issue from when the child is 40 lbs to when they are ready for a booster.

https://teslaownersonline.com/threads/model-3-with-kids.5636/
So...to me this seems like the square peg, round hole scenario. Trying to force the car into being something it isn't. Elon was asked his opinion and he gave it. Maybe he was wrong, I don't know. Not having any small children anymore I have no evidence or first hand experience one way or the other. If the car works for you...great. If it doesn't....well there are other options.

Dan
 

mig

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#10
I agree some people might try to make the car something it is not. There are always tradeoffs. I'm not sure it is beneficial tell anyone that complains about a tradeoff to go away and buy another vehicle. I thought the Tesla mission was to *accelerate* adoption of EVs. Probably there should continue to be an open, helpful discussion.

Of course I could wish after 5 years of driving EVs with big compromise I could get a no-compromise EV for $50K, but like you say that is a ridiculous assumption. My no compromise vehicle would probably be a Model X. ;)

However, I don't think wishing there was a reasonable bike rack solution for the Model 3 means I should go buy a BMW or Audi. I'm still hopeful there will be an aftermarket hitch, and if not, roof racks. (Now wishing there was somehow more space in the car is possibly a different story)
 

Dan Detweiler

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#11
I agree some people might try to make the car something it is not. There are always tradeoffs. I'm not sure it is beneficial tell anyone that complains about a tradeoff to go away and buy another vehicle. I thought the Tesla mission was to *accelerate* adoption of EVs. Probably there should continue to be an open, helpful discussion.

Of course I could wish after 5 years of driving EVs with big compromise I could get a no-compromise EV for $50K, but like you say that is a ridiculous assumption. My no compromise vehicle would probably be a Model X. ;)

However, I don't think wishing there was a reasonable bike rack solution for the Model 3 means I should go buy a BMW or Audi. I'm still hopeful there will be an aftermarket hitch, and if not, roof racks. (Now wishing there was somehow more space in the car is possibly a different story)
While I certainly understand your point, and have no problem with the position, I don't think offering another car that has what people are looking for is an unreasonable option. There are certain things that can be added and changed with the Model 3 and certain things that can not. Software updates? Certainly. Adding a hitch? Possibly. Making the car bigger or wider? No.

Dan
 

mig

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#12
While I certainly understand your point, and have no problem with the position, I don't think offering another car that has what people are looking for is an unreasonable option. There are certain things that can be added and changed with the Model 3 and certain things that can not. Software updates? Certainly. Adding a hitch? Possibly. Making the car bigger or wider? No.

Dan
Good point!
 

MelindaV

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#13
So...to me this seems like the square peg, round hole scenario. Trying to force the car into being something it isn't. Elon was asked his opinion and he gave it. Maybe he was wrong, I don't know. Not having any small children anymore I have no evidence or first hand experience one way or the other. If the car works for you...great. If it doesn't....well there are other options.

Dan
if it works in a Nissan Leaf that is a couple inches narrower, there is no reason it would not work in the Model 3
 

svusa11

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#14
There is actually a very simple explanation for the complaints.

98% of current owners bought the car sight unseen.

For better or worse they threw down $50-60k on something they had likely never seen before and it wasn’t what they were hoping for.
Agreed.

Good number of reservation holders are first time EV buyer and 50K blind date comes with its own set of anxiety. I think after they shell out 50k and take delivery there isn't much could go wrong! Either it's going to blow away their expectations or will regret paying such a high price !! :):eek:
 

SoFlaModel3

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#15
BUT anyone who has gotten to the point of paying the $50-$60k have seen the photos and watched the reveal event(s) and know this is not the vehicle to carry 2x4s and Sheetrock
I couldn’t agree with you more. I was more so pointing to ride comfort which is something you can’t see in a picture or someone else’s video.
 

svusa11

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#18
I couldn’t agree with you more. I was more so pointing to ride comfort which is something you can’t see in a picture or someone else’s video.
I agree that's only thing makes me bit worried. Personally, I don't like stiff ride and most reviews suggest it is little bit stiff. I hope I can get used to it driving on Jersey roads..
 

Dan Detweiler

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#19
Keep in mind that coil suspensions tend to soften somewhat with use. Granted I'm sure it is not significant but perhaps enough over the first few thousand miles?

Dan
 
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#20
My personal feeling is that the Model 3 is pulling in people who would otherwise be in several other markets. I currently drive a Nissan Altima. If I were to get a new car, I would probably be looking at Nissan, Ford, Toyota or Subaru before I would be looking at BMW, Audi, etc. I want an electric car to reduce our dependence on oil in general and oil from unstable parts of the world in particular. Model 3 is the first electric car that I consider to be practical with a good range and a price that is (at the upper end of) my range. I'm just looking for a commuter car that I can take on occasional long trips and has the best gas mileage (not even applicable). Ability to haul stuff is a consideration as it is my only car, but I don't need a pickup or a hatchback.

Model 3 is good car for people in a variety of markets, not just the luxury sports sedan market.