Posted on April 07, 2017 by Matt Pressman
In the last few days, there have been a flurry of new spy photos and videos that have surfaced. Teslarati was graced by one of its readers, Wayne, who provided some spy shots taken, "near the company’s Silicon Valley-based headquarters in Palo Alto, California... Wayne, spotted the Model 3 driving in the opposite direction before making a U-turn and giving chase to the electric sedan. The Model 3 was followed by two cars, one of which was a BMW."
Above: Black Model 3 release candidate spotted near Tesla headquarters in Palo Alto (Image: Teslarati via Wayne)
Teslarati followed up with further insights into the photos, identifying "a new sensor located on each side of the c-pillar. Upon closer inspection, it would appear that Model 3 has two additional Autopilot cameras, bringing the total count to 10 cameras... [it's located] behind the second-row door where the triangular window is located. Looking at a zoomed in version of the rear-side of Model 3, there appears to be an additional sensor or camera lens... This new sensor [theoretically] could be crucial in delivering the vehicle more data about the vehicle’s surroundings, thus making the vehicle even more future proof."
Above: A new sensor appears to be positioned on the c-pillar of the Model 3 release candidate (Image: Teslarati via Wayne)
Wayne also sent along additional spy photos to Electrek who edited a video "which shows the Model 3 under new angles and driving for the first time... We [Electrek] combined both yesterday’s and today’s sightings in a single video, which we stabilized a little since they are stitched together from the iPhone’s burst mode photos." Check out the video below. Electrek also observed "that the tail lights now have a split in them which wasn’t present in the original prototypes shown at the unveiling – so perhaps we’ve finally gotten a glimpse at what the final trunk opening will look like." It's possible that the trunk area/opening has improved since the prototype as well.
Above: Spy video taken of a Tesla Model 3 release candidate (Youtube: Electrek.co)
And yesterday, Jalopnik was also able to capture some revealing spy shots. Jalopnik captured a photo of the release candidate's interior and notes, "unlike the earlier Tesla Model S and Tesla Model X, it’s like a big horizontal tablet stuck to the dash, rather than a vertical one integrated with the rest of the car." In this case, it appears the release candidate has the same single horizontal tablet display as the prototype. Jalopnik also points out that the Model 3's nose "definitely [has] more of a crease to it for a more 'traditional' look." We also like the look of the blue Model 3 release candidate as well.
Above: Trevor Page provides a detailed overview of spy shots including the photos from Jalopnik (Source: Model 3 Owners Club)
One striking aspect of the Model 3 release candidate is how much it looks similar to the Model S — indeed... it looks a bit like a mini Model S. To that end, Tesla took to its blog to remind folks that, "Model 3 is smaller, simpler, and will come with far fewer options than Model S, but it makes driving feel effortless and offers a good range of at least 215 miles for our starting model... While Model 3 will be our newest car, it isn’t 'Version 3' or the next generation Tesla. Our higher priced premium models still include the most advanced technology and the best driving experience we have to offer."