The end of 2017 marked a great time for Tesla Model 3 reservations holders in the Los Angeles and San Francisco Bay area, with the carmaker ramping up its non-employee deliveries for the mass market electric car. Among these proud, new Model 3 owners is Mel Herbert of Talking Tesla podcast, who recently uploaded a video on his YouTube channel about his first impressions of the vehicle. Apart from providing a brief walkthrough of some of Model 3’s features, Herbert also gave some useful comparisons between his newly-acquired Tesla and its larger sibling, the Model S.
One thing that immediately struck Herbert was how the Model 3, which is nearly 12″ (304mm) shorter in length than the Model S, has impeccable visibility. According to the Talking Tesla host, Model 3’s lack of an instrument cluster and minimalistic dashboard provides drivers with an excellent view of the road. Coupled with the design of the car’s hood, the Model 3 actually provides better visibility than its larger, more premium siblings — the Model S and the Model X.
“There is so much visibility out of here even compared to the S, and I would say even compared to the X. You can see so much more out of this car because this (the hood) also seems to drop off faster than on the S, so it sort of gets out of the way.”
Talking Tesla’s show host emphasized his point by providing a first-person view from inside both the Model 3 and the Model S. True to his observations; Model 3’s windshield does offer a better view of the road than the Model S’ windshield, which, while far wider, is also significantly narrower.
Apart from Herbert’s observations about the Model 3’s excellent windshield and trunk space that passes the “golf club test”, he also took special notice of the vehicle’s ease of entry. Herbert notes that the vehicle’s open cabin design, which has enough headroom to support a driver as tall as 6’7″, feels easier to enter than the Model S.
The resolution and dynamic range of Model 3’s display is also significantly higher than the screens found in the Model S and Model X, says Herbert. Despite lacking a driver’s instrument cluster, as found in the Model S and Model X, the touchscreen is still easy to see from the driver’s seat. However, Herbert notes that not all areas of the screen are easily visible while driving because of the landscape orientation.
The reason for Model 3’s one-touchscreen-for-all-riders design is likely because the vehicle was built with self-driving in mind. Tesla CEO Elon Musk, for one, has stated that the car would play an important role in the Tesla Network, an upcoming ride-sharing network that would enable commuters to summon a car to pick them up and drop them off at a designated location. According to Musk, Tesla owners would have the option to allow their car to participate in the Tesla Network, enabling their vehicles to pretty much pay for themselves.
Tesla is currently ramping up the production of the Model 3, with new locations such as the Marina Del Rey delivery center starting operations. The carmaker is expecting to hit its target production rate of 5,000 units a week at some point in the first quarter of 2018.