Posted on April 07, 2018 by Matt Pressman
Looking at the roundup of recent press from the automotive media, it's clear that the Tesla Model 3 is making an impression. Recently, John Beltz Snyder at Autoblog got his chance to test drive the Model 3 and provide a critique of the much-anticipated car. In short, he calls the Model 3 "a super entertaining daily driver that offers quiet quickness in an efficient, stylish and practical package."
Above: Tesla's Model 3 (Photo: Ian Larson)
Snyder liked the acceleration which "comes a lot more quickly than you might expect. When you don't have to pause for shifts, it feels even faster. The linearity of the acceleration adds to the excitement factor, like you're riding some sort of voltaic slingshot. The quiet adds to the mystique as well. The Model 3 was mild-mannered and well behaved until we intentionally put our foot to the floor, then it let us know that, like its bigger Tesla brethren, it was willing to entertain."
What about the interior? Snyder notes, "The interior materials feel appropriate for the price point: upscale where you need it, and the harder bits are at least nice to look at. The leather steering wheel is smooth, slightly soft (al dente, maybe) and grippy. The wood across the dash looks nice, but the piano black plastic on the doors and center console was already showing some minor surface wear — we were warned that it could scratch easily." On the other hand, "the seats are very comfortable and supportive."
Above: John Beltz Snyder gives his POV on Tesla's lower-priced sedan (Youtube: Autoblog)
Snyder did have some issues with the Model 3's user interface. He adds, "The lack of an instrument cluster behind the steering wheel is a bit disorienting... [but] we eventually got used to looking to our right to check our speed." He also wants to see improvements from Autopilot. And although the car may improve over time with software updates, he'd still prefer if it came with a head-up display.
Snyder admits, "the Model 3's quirks make themselves apparent right away. The novel exterior handle that emerges from the bodywork, and the push-button door opener on the interior remind you this car is different every time you get in or out of it. The overarching theme is high-tech and novel, from the cameras in the B-pillar and on the front fender to the sheer minimalism of the dash in front of you."
Above: Model 3 at a Tesla Supercharger (Instagram: s3xy.3)
However, he concludes, "The Tesla Model 3 is a great car to drive, with a quiet ride, punchy acceleration and the ability to make almost any road fun... This is a car that stirs up emotions when driving it, and the fact that it does that well is a great thing, not just for customers, but for the entire image of clean cars. And it's undeniably a Tesla, too, despite the lower price point. There's no other EV at this price that's this fun — or this weird."