Tesla customers are starting to review their Model 3s -- here's what they have to say

Timothy Artman/TeslaEarly reviewers have praised the Model 3’s handling and acceleration.
  • Early reviews from Tesla Model 3 owners have been positive so far.
  • Some have praised the car’s handling and said they prefer it to the pricier Model S.
  • Most concerns have involved technical problems.

Tesla‘s Model 3, the company’s first mass-market electric vehicle, is beginning to arrive at the company’s showrooms. While most of the hundreds of thousands of people who pre-ordered the car are still waiting (and probably will be for a while), a lucky few customers have received their Model 3 vehicles.

So far, the reviews are positive.

Early reviewers like the handling and acceleration

“I like it a lot. I almost like it better than my [Model] S, just because it’s a little smaller,” Model 3 owner Chad Hurin told Business Insider in a phone interview. While he noted that the Model 3’s handling is “a little stiffer” than the pricier Model S, he said the Model 3 feels “quicker” and is easier to manoeuvre.

Hurin’s biggest problem so far was a small one: The front, driver-side door doesn’t close as easily as he’d like.

“I keep closing it and it doesn’t latch,” he said. “It’s just annoying that you have to open the door back up and close it back. I’ve done it probably a dozen times already since I’ve had it.”

Hurin’s impressions resemble those expressed by Model 3 owners who have posted reviews of the car to Reddit. They praised the car’s handling and acceleration, and were mostly bothered by small, technical problems.

“Picked up the 3 yesterday and noticed how ‘boat-like’ the S is by comparison,” Reddit user tzoyaq wrote. “Aside from the overall feel, there is one area that I’m extremely pleased with in the 3… and that’s U-turns. The S requires about three lanes width to make it – sometimes requiring a three-point turn – whereas the 3 can do it comfortably with two.”

“Car is fun to drive, I guess .2 seconds slower than the X but it feels like it is slightly faster,” Reddit user goldieLL wrote. “Overall a pretty great car. Some premium features of the X are definitely missed but that’s to be expected for $US40k less. I don’t think I’ll default to wanting to drive the X (now my wife’s car) over this one.”

Some minor technical

Another Reddit user, TheYeags, described a hiccup with the Model 3’s Bluetooth features.

“The car is constantly connecting to our phones [sic] Bluetooth every few minutes,” TheYeags wrote. “This results in the car waking up and unfolding the mirrors – all day long.”

“If this issue isn’t resolved quickly the motors in the mirror will eventually wear out.”

The positive responses the Model 3 has received so far are good news for Tesla – which has struggled to meet its production goals for the vehicle – and consistent with the long-term satisfaction Tesla owners have reported with the company’s cars.

For Tesla to even come close to the lofty market capitalisation goals set out in a new compensation plan proposed for CEO Elon Musk, the company will have to find success among consumers who can’t afford Tesla’s high-end vehicles. Solving the Model 3’s production issues and working to fulfil the car’s pre-orders in a somewhat timely manner would be a good first step.

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