Tesla Model 3: it is a real "anti-car" that divides all car enthusiasts

Different from everyone else, because it's actually not just a car.

Tesla Model 3
Photo: Tesla

The best electric car of the moment, the Tesla Model 3 offers a combination of innovation and performance that is hard to beat by other electric cars. In addition, it has so many features that you could think it came from the future - somewhere between flying cars and robots that clean your house.

There are two types of people in the motoring world: those who love Tesla and those who swear by classic petrol cars. Then there are those like me who are somewhere in between. But while we shouldn't get excited about them, we can't help but keep at least one eye on them to see what new they're up to. And let's face it, it was pretty fascinating at times. Even more so than watching your neighbor's drone try to crash in the garden.

When you talk to car enthusiasts, you'll often hear Tesla described as everything that's wrong with cars. They cling to nostalgia, the pleasure of the sound of a V8 engine, the smoothness of a V6 or the playfulness of a turbo four-cylinder engine - all that Tesla does not offer. Tesla is in the eyes of many "anti-cars". But after three days with this Tesla Model 3, the latest facelifted and upgraded iteration, I'm here to try and change your opinion and mine about this vehicle. Because who knows, maybe I'll be joined by a robot companion next time.

Lately, I've been distracted by the press talking enthusiastically about the launch of the Hyundai Ioniq N5, because this car hums like a real car and simulates a honking. Journalists who have worked in the automotive industry all their lives still do not understand the benefits of electric vehicles. Tesla will never have the sound that some manufacturers who don't understand e-mobility are trying to simulate. Tesla will never simulate shifting. Why would she even do this and what is the purpose of it?

Tesla Model 3
Photo: Tesla

What's new in the Tesla Model 3?

The Model 3 has seen some visual changes with Tesla's latest operating system. Although these changes are subtle, they are significant. The front headlights are slimmer and sleeker, and the front bumper is a bit too smooth – reminiscent of a certain Ken from our nursery. The taillights are slightly more refined and have a wrap-around feature, and the Tesla T on the rear has replaced the lettering. The whole thing looks like the car James Bond would drive if he were a member of Greenpeace.

Inside, everything is old fashioned, which means typical minimalist Scandinavian style with few buttons and no clutter. The Tesla Model 3 has been on the market for a few months now, so there's probably nothing new to tell you that you don't already know. But for those of you who still doubt whether a Tesla can change your mind, there are three very important features it must have. I will explain them later.

Photo: Tesla

Technical data and capabilities

The model I tested is a rear-wheel drive model. When I received the key card, I did not get accurate information about the battery capacity. Tesla does not state the capacity of the battery, but the range, which is 514 kilometers (319 miles). In practice, however, the car only offers around 386 kilometers (240 miles) of range, which is 80 kilometers (50 miles) less than promised. So if you're planning a trip from Ljubljana to Pula, make sure you have a plan B - like visiting a friend in between for a coffee and a recharge. Of course, Tesla charging stations will help you with this, but still, the real range on highways is under 400 kilometers.

The rear-wheel drive Tesla Model 3 accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 5.8 seconds, which is more than enough for everyday driving. Pricing for the model starts at around 46,000 euros and can go up to 69,000 euros depending on additional equipment such as advanced autopilot, fully automatic driving, a choice of premium colors and larger wheels. Yes, that's right, you can add features like on your smartphone if you have enough money. But the choice is limited. The next step? Probably buying extra lives like in video games.

Photo: Tesla

Usage experience

One of the interesting functions is the Sentry mode, which allows access to the vehicle's cameras via a mobile phone. Using the Tesla app, you can monitor what's happening around the vehicle, even when you're not nearby. With Camp mode, Arcade and Theater, Tesla makes longer stops fun. Who wouldn't want to play video games while charging? I think this is close to a dream scenario for anyone who has ever dreamed of owning their own Batmobile.

With the Tesla Model 3, everything is almost ready for future upgrades. This means that you can upgrade the basic model with additional functions right through the app, for example adding advanced autopilot or fully automatic driving. What is particularly interesting is the possibility of remote software upgrades, which is a rarity in the world of cars. This way, you can acquire new functions overnight - as if the car wanted to wish you a "Happy New Year" with a software upgrade.

Ergonomics and interior

Tesla has removed most of the physical switches – practically all switches, and all functions have been moved to the steering wheel or the central touchscreen. On the steering wheel you can find turn signals, volume adjustment, control of headlights and wipers, and access to the 360-degree camera. While this may seem overly complex at first, it turns out to be very intuitive over time. As intuitive as it is to know that the sun will shine after the rain - or you will be surprised by the rain while charging the battery.

Photo: Tesla

When driving for a long time, however, the minimalism of the interior can become problematic, as you have to look at the screen several times to access certain functions, which distracts from the road. Fortunately, the screen is very responsive and clear, making it easy to operate while driving. So, if you like challenges like playing console games, driving a Tesla Model 3 might just be for you.

Driving opinion

Driving the Tesla Model 3 is comfortable and quiet, as the electric drive does not make noise like traditional engines. The one-pedal driving system, which allows acceleration and braking with one pedal, is very intuitive and quickly becomes a natural way of driving. It also impresses with the spaciousness of the trunk. With a design that makes use of every centimeter of space, you'll always find enough space for your luggage. Added value is also the thoughtful design of interior details, such as the upgraded sun visor. When you finally find a place for all your luggage, you'll think you could travel to space.

Photo: Tesla

Concluding thought

The Tesla Model 3 is a car that's hard to hate if you give it a chance. While I can understand why traditionalists are skeptical because the Tesla doesn't offer the same drama and sound as gasoline cars, it is, on the other hand, very enjoyable to drive. Model 3 stands out with advanced technological solutions that no other manufacturer offers. With each passing day with the Model 3, it's harder to deny that it's the car of the future—and no, I'm not just talking about the future of your wallet.

In the electrical world, three elements are key: authenticity, suitability for use and orientation to the future. The Tesla Model 3 combines these elements in a way that sets new standards in the automotive industry. So if you are looking for a car, which is always one step ahead of the competition, the Tesla Model 3 is definitely the right choice. Just like choosing ice cream in a cone instead of a pot - simply a better choice.

With you since 2004

From 2004 we research urban trends and inform our community of followers daily about the latest in lifestyle, travel, style and products that inspire with passion. From 2023, we offer content in major global languages.