Posted on June 30, 2016 by Matt Pressman
Tesla Motors [NASDAQ: TSLA] launched the forthcoming Model 3 to great fanfare. A recent interview with CEO Elon Musk pegs Model 3 pre-orders at 400,000. Even though Musk was quick to tweet Model 3 updates post-launch, he's been relatively quiet on any developments with the much-anticipated and lower-priced electric vehicle. Most comments have revolved around streamlining Model 3's production process, as Musk noted that Tesla planned to: "design the car to be easy to make." That said, we've been hoping for some new information on the Model 3 related to the car's performance.
It turns out, yesterday Electrek reported a leak: "A source very familiar with the Model 3 powertrain program confirmed that Tesla tapped the same engineers who worked on the dual motor inverter architecture [for Model S] to develop the Model 3’s, but this time, they were given a blank sheet to develop the system from the ground up, including the power semiconductor package... [and] the strategy paid off and the inverter architecture for the Model 3 will have a capacity of 'over 300kW', comparable to the Model S’ RWD system even though the S is a much higher-end and bigger vehicle."
In addition, this source noted: "The system is also geared toward manufacturing with ~25% fewer unique parts and they managed to significantly increase both the volumetric and gravimetric current density. The Model 3 inverter is also expected to be much cheaper on a dollar per power capacity basis than even Tesla’s most recent dual motor inverter system." What could this mean for Model 3's performance characteristics? "A main drive unit delivering over 300 kW combined with a similar dual motor as Tesla’s current system delivering up to ~250kW could easily achieve supercar-like performance similar to the Model S."
Along with this intriguing leak, multiple spy photos have surfaced recently showing a matte black Tesla Model 3 including a revealing shot (see image above) of the spartan Model 3 interior. Many have predicted that the Tesla Model 3 may include a heads-up display (HUD) to augment the sole landscape-style touchscreen seen on the dash. And, take a look at some of the Model 3's exterior spy photos below...
Also, this undercover video caught the matte black Tesla Model 3 doing some highway road testing while being shadowed in front and behind by Model S cars -- check it out below...
Youtube: José Antonio Pérez
In other news yesterday, Electrek reported that, "Tesla quietly created a ‘Golden Ticket’ drawing for all the Model 3 reservation holders who placed a pre-order during the first day and randomly selected 12 winners to receive an all-expenses paid trip to the Gigafactory Grand Opening... About 150,000 people reserved the Model 3 on the opening day, meaning that they had about a 1 in 12,000 chance of winning the trip." So, if you pre-ordered the Tesla Model 3 on the first day, be absolutely sure to check your in-box. We checked ours... and unfortunately, no invite. Regardless, congrats to those lucky winners who received the Gigafactory 'Golden Ticket' and we'll be sure to keep all of those in the Tesla community updated on the latest Tesla Model 3 news.