What’s wrong with the new Tesla Model 3

The new Tesla Model 3 (Highland project) is full of advantages compared to the old one. However, it also comes with its share of disadvantages, as we will see in this article.

The new Tesla Model 3 which was released on the sly this very morning of September 1, 2023 has many positive points compared to the old one. The early flaws (of a car released 6 years ago) can have been corrected, but as usual with Elon Musk’s company, new negative points have just appeared.

Negative points that we don’t always notice immediately

Goodbye commodos, hello problems?

The first negative point that jumps out at the new Tesla Model 3 is certainly behind the wheel. As you may have noticed, the controls have disappeared. This means two things: to shift into forward or reverse gear, you will need to perform an action on the screen, and secondly, to activate the indicators, you will need to touch a capacitive button located on the steering wheel.

The first action, that of shifting into forward or reverse gear, is not something you should do frequently in the car. Apart from during parking maneuvers, where you will have to get into the habit of sliding your finger upwards towards the bottom of the vehicle’s main screen, this should not be a problem. For the indicators, it’s a different story.

Indeed, in a country like ours where roundabouts are relatively frequent, you will have to adopt new reflexes to be able to touch the button corresponding to a turn signal at the right time when leaving the roundabout. A point that we discussed at length in our tests of the new Tesla Model S and Model X, which were the first to be victims of the disappearance of these controls.

Usually, the place you have to touch to activate a turn signal never moves. That is to say that regardless of the position of the steering wheel, your left hand will always move the switch up or down in the same place. With the new Tesla Model 3, if the steering wheel is not perfectly straight, you will have to remember to look at where the button reserved for the indicator is located to be able to activate it.

This is an additional headache for future Tesla Model 3 owners and we will not fail to tell you what we think of it when we have been able to take it in hand.

A rising price

The second negative point of this new Tesla Model 3 is of course its price. A slight increase of 1,000 euros (Model 3 Propulsion at 42,990 euros and Model 3 Grande Autonomie at 50,990 euros) was noted overnight, when the online configurator was updated. If this only represents around 2% increase depending on the vehicle configurations, we cannot not point the finger at the latter.

A longer and lower car

The third negative point concerns the dimensions. The ground clearance of the old Tesla Model 3 was already not known to be very high. People who have owned one and who have experienced certain underground parking lots know this well: it sometimes happened to rub under the vehicle.

With this new Tesla Model 3 with even reduced ground clearance, we must expect that certain speed bumps will be taken extremely slowly so as not to rub. The same goes for breaks in the slopes of underground car parks where you will have to cross your fingers not to damage the underside of the chassis.

What’s more, this new Tesla Model 3 is 3 centimeters longer (4.72 meters compared to 4.69 meters), which means that it will be even more complicated to park than the old one.

Still no HD radar

We can regret that Tesla is not reversing its race to “all cameras”. The first Tesla Model 3s had a radar, and the most recent ones no longer had one. In recent months, a rumor concerning a high-definition radar has come up frequently. Unfortunately, it’s not this time.

Which in fact implies a maximum speed in Autopilot limited to 140 km/h (compared to 150 km/h previously) and a higher following distance with the previous car. But Tesla had promised that the driving aids (adaptive cruise control and lane keeping) would be just as effective without radars, after a while.

With the new Tesla Model 3, we still have the right to a new camera at the front, inserted in the front bumper, to (perhaps) benefit from a 360° view and a Park functionality More useful assist.

No sponsorship for the new Model 3

Finally, we can point out the latest pettiness of Tesla, which activates and deactivates the famous sponsorship program according to its needs, and which discreetly altered it overnight.

Indeed, for Tesla Model 3 orders, it is no longer possible to benefit from a sponsorship reward, neither for the sponsor nor for the godchild. Only Tesla Model Y, Model S and Model X orders are currently eligible for rewards.

Everything you need to know about the new restyled Tesla Model 3 (Highland)

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