Tesla’s most affordable model to-date has finally arrived in Australia, ending reservation holders’ 3 year wait and an equally long hype cycle. Today on the JET Charge blog we’ve collected the information you’ll need to decide if the Model 3 is the EV for you.
There’s really no overstating the anticipation going in to the Model 3’s Australian release. Ever since it dropped for US customers in 2017, Aussie EV enthusiasts have been scratching at Tesla’s door for our chance to join the fun.
The first of the new Model 3s are already on our shores for showrooms and reviews, with customers’ vehicles expected for delivery in early September. Securing a Model 3 is as easy as visiting Tesla’s online ordering system.
ANCAP certainly got theirs on time. The Australian New Car Assessment Program gave the Model 3 a straight 5 stars for safety with a 96% adult and 87% child occupant protection score.
These scores are valid for all three of the variants offered to Aussie customers: the Standard Range Plus (SR+), Long Range, and Performance. Each can be purchased at prices between $68,118 (for an ACT-registered SR+) and $121,816 driveaway (for a decked-out Performance model registered in WA).
So what does that hefty price tag get you? The Performance Model 3 clocks an impressive 3.4 second 0-100 and a 261 km/h top speed. This isn’t quite the “ludicrous speed” of the top-of-the-range Model S, but it’s no slouch and a clear winner against the rival BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C Class.
More important to us, however, is range. Tesla uses the outdated NEDC cycle to rate the range on the Model 3, promising 460 km for the SR+, 560 for the Performance, and 620 km for the Long Range. European WLTP figures, considered more realistic for everyday driving, put the variants at 409 km, 530 km, and 560 km respectively (you might have to manually change your country on the Tesla site to view these stats).
Optional extras for the Model 3 include a premium black/white interior for $1,400 (Performance model only), a selection of exterior colours ranging between $1,050 for black and $2,800 for red multi-coat. Only pearl white comes at no extra cost.
And while it doesn’t count for much today, full self-driving capability can be added to a Model 3 order for $8,500, with the promise of a software update sometime in the future. Tesla have long claimed that their vehicles are ready for autonomous driving and they’re just waiting on software to catch up. For a better look at Tesla’s autonomy plan, see our article on Autopilot, Robotaxis and “The Network”.
Notably missing from Tesla’s Australian online store is the option for a towbar. Europeans have been able to add towing to their Model 3s since May, and we know they’re planning on adding it to Aussie variants since they got the Model 3 rated for towing up to 910 kgs for braked trailers.
First impressions will be crucial for the Model 3 when they start appearing on our roads next month. As Tesla’s national recommended charging installer, we’re excited to help more Aussies get their Model 3s on the road. For more on home and portable charging for your Tesla, visit our services page.