Tesla Model 3 Highland Review: A Closer Look at the Refreshed Model

Tesla Model 3 Highland Review: A Closer Look at the Refreshed Model

Tesla, the pioneer of electric vehicles, continues to redefine the automotive industry. The latest offering in their lineup, the Tesla Model 3 Highland, is nothing short of revolutionary. In this review, we'll delve into the nuances of this vehicle, examining its refreshed features, both inside and out, as well as its remarkable performance.

A Duo of Options: Rear-Wheel Drive and Long-Range All-Wheel Drive

The Tesla Model 3 Highland presents two distinct variants: the Rear-Wheel Drive and the Long-Range All-Wheel Drive. It's worth noting that the high-performance all-wheel-drive "Performance" variant has been replaced by the Long-Range All-Wheel Drive, reflecting Tesla's evolving product strategy.

Exterior Refinement: Sharp and Stylish

The exterior of the Model 3 Highland has undergone significant enhancements. Its previous rounded contours have given way to sharper lines, giving the vehicle a more aggressive and modern aesthetic. The most noticeable changes are upfront, where elongated headlights, accompanied by angular LED daytime running lights, create an imposing presence. Additionally, the front bumper design has been revamped, eschewing fog lights and diverting towards a more minimalistic appearance.

To achieve a comprehensive visual-based autonomous driving system, all radar sensors have been removed from the Model 3 Highland, relying solely on cameras for perception.

While the side profile retains much of its previous design, the wheel designs have been updated. Even though the wheelbase remains unchanged, the new wheel designs contribute to an improved coefficient of drag, reducing energy consumption. The Model 3 Highland also introduces two new exterior paint options, offering customers a wider selection.

The rear of the vehicle showcases a distinctive "C-shaped" taillight design, along with a more simplified emblem. The black lower rear fascia area has also been expanded, and the model badge now includes a "+" symbol, signifying the enhancements made.

Interior Sophistication: Minimalism and Comfort

Entering the cabin reveals Tesla's signature minimalist design, now with an enveloping style. A keen eye will notice the removal of the previous wood trim, replaced by a woven textile material. Coupled with the ambient lighting offering 256 color choices, the overall interior ambiance exudes a heightened sense of luxury.

Furthermore, the steering wheel design has been revamped to feature a simpler logo and, similar to the new Model S, omits traditional gear selectors, integrating these functions onto the steering wheel and central screen.

Driving Comfort and Safety

Although the wheelbase remains unchanged, the Model 3 Highland offers significantly improved comfort. The front seats now feature ventilation, and the windows are equipped with double-layer laminated glass for enhanced insulation. Additionally, an 8-inch control screen has been added in the rear passenger area, allowing rear-seat occupants to control features such as seat heating, adjust airflow, or even play music or videos, providing a similar experience to the Model S.

Tesla has bolstered safety by introducing remote airbags, optimizing side structure, adding interior blind-spot warning lights, and incorporating rear door emergency release handles.

Performance and Efficiency: A Powerhouse of Innovation

Under the hood, the Model 3 Highland boasts a peak power output of 194 kW and peak torque of 340 N·m for the Rear-Wheel Drive variant. The Long-Range All-Wheel Drive variant offers a more robust 331 kW of power and 559 N·m of torque. Reports suggest the battery capacity for the Rear-Wheel Drive has been increased from 60 kWh to 66 kWh, potentially extending its CLTC range to 610 kilometers. Meanwhile, the high-performance variant features a 72 kWh battery, a slight reduction from the current 78.4 kWh capacity. This update might also include a heat pump for the climate control system.

Acceleration figures for the Rear-Wheel Drive and All-Wheel Drive variants stand at 6.1 seconds and 4.4 seconds for 0 to 100 km/h, respectively, with a top speed of 200 km/h, a slight reduction compared to the previous model.

Range considerations also depend on wheel size, with the Rear-Wheel Drive variant achieving a range of 606 kilometers with 18-inch wheels, whereas the 19-inch version provides a range of 567 kilometers. The Long-Range All-Wheel Drive offers an impressive 713 kilometers with 18-inch wheels or 682 kilometers with 19-inch wheels.

The Bottom Line: A Calculated Investment

In conclusion, the Tesla Model 3 Highland represents a marked evolution of an already impressive electric vehicle. The increase in price is primarily justified by improvements in comfort, range, and safety. However, for those who prefer to wait, Tesla's history of price adjustments remains a factor to consider.

Overall, the Model 3 Highland is a testament to Tesla's dedication to innovation and their mission to accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy. With its refined design, enhanced comfort, and impressive performance, it continues to be a frontrunner in the electric vehicle market.

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