Tesla has given its strong-selling Model 3 electric sedan a nip-and-tuck for 2021.
The 2021 Tesla Model 3 gets a revised interior design and new wheel designs, in keeping with reports from the USA last week.
The updates are live on the Tesla Australia configurator, with orders currently scheduled to arrive in the next four to eight weeks.
Outside, there’s a new alloy wheel design for the base Model 3 Standard Range Plus, with a more stylish take on the aerodynamic covers previously applied to the base wheels.
The top-end Model 3 Performance also gets new turbine-style wheels. Gone is the chrome trim around the windows across the range, replaced by a new blacked-out finish. Tesla has also given the Model 3 a powered tailgate.
Inside, there’s a new design for the transmission tunnel – or what would be in an internal-combustion car.
Gone is the gloss black finish of the existing Model 3, replaced with a matte black finish. There’s also a new storage space under the infotainment screen and a smaller covered storage space ahead of the cupholders.
There’s wireless charging for two phones under the touchscreen, two extra USB-C high-speed charge ports, and an extra USB-A port in the glovebox for sentry mode or dash cam footage.
- 2021 Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus RWD: $66,900 (-$6000)
- 2021 Tesla Model 3 Long Range AWD: $81,900 (-$9287)
- 2021 Tesla Model 3 Performance AWD: $90,900 (-$10,114)
All prices exclude on-road costs
Given the Model 3 is a pure-electric vehicle, there’s no engine to speak of here. Instead, the car is offered with a choice of single- or dual-motor powertrain.
Tesla has updated the Model 3 with the more efficient heat pump developed for the Model Y, for more efficient heating and air conditioning of the cabin.
The single-motor rear-wheel drive Standard Range Plus has 211kW of power and has a 54kWh battery pack good for 490km of range on the NEDC test cycle.
The Long Range AWD has 188kW from its rear motor and 147kW from the front motor, fed by a 79.5kWh battery pack. Range is 657km on the NEDC test cycle.
The range-topping Performance AWD offers 147kW from its front motor and 211kW from the one on the rear axle, mated with a 79.5kWh battery pack good for 628km on the NEDC test.
The Model 3 has a five-star safety rating from ANCAP, and has been lauded in the USA for its impressive crash performance.
Standard equipment on the Model 3 Standard Range Plus includes:
- 18-inch alloy wheels
- 12-way power adjustable front seats
- Heated front seats
- Tinted glass roof
- Upgraded audio
- Power folding mirrors
- 15-inch touchscreen
- Satellite navigation
- Adaptive cruise control
- Lane-keeping assist
- Autonomous emergency braking
- Reversing camera
- Parking sensors
Moving to the Long Range AWD adds:
- 19-inch alloy wheels
- Heated rear seats
- Premium audio
- Live traffic updates
- In-car music/media streaming
- LED fog lights
- Interior floor mats
The Model 3 Performance is fitted with:
- 20-inch alloy wheels
- Performance brakes
- Carbon fibre spoiler
- Lowered suspension
- Track mode
Given it has very few moving parts, there isn’t much maintenance required on the Model 3. Tesla recommends having the air-conditioning filters changed every two years, and checking the tyre tread, balance, and rotation every 20,000km.
Thanks to regenerative braking, the brake pads and discs require work less frequently than in internal-combustion vehicles. However the Model 3 will need to have brake fluid checked every two years, and the pads and discs lubricated every 12 months in colder climes.