|Tesla Model 3|
Tesla Model 3 prototype
|Also called||Code name: BlueStar|
|Assembly||Fremont, California, US|
|Designer||Franz von Holzhausen|
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||4-door fastback sedan|
|Electric motor||Rear motor 258 hp (192 kW), 317 lb·ft (430 N·m) (estimated) 3-phase 6-pole permanent magnet motors|
|Battery||50 or 75 kWh (180 or 270 MJ) Lithium ion|
|Wheelbase||113.2 in (2,880 mm)|
|Length||184.8 in (4,690 mm)|
|Width||76.1 in (1,930 mm)|
|Height||56.8 in (1,440 mm)|
The Tesla Model 3 is a mid-size all-electric four-door luxury sedan manufactured and sold by Tesla, Inc. According to Tesla officials the standard Model 3 delivers an EPA rated all-electric range of 220 miles (350 km) and the long-range model delivers 334 miles (540 km). The Model 3 has a minimalist dashboard with only a center-mounted LCD touchscreen.
Within a week of unveiling the Model 3 in 2016, Tesla said, they had taken 325,000 reservations for the car, more than triple the number of Model S sedans sold by the end of 2015. These reservations represent potential sales of over US$14 billion. By August 2017, there were 455,000 net reservations, and an average of 1,800 reservations were being added per day.
Limited production of the Model 3 began in mid-2017, with the first production vehicle rolling off the assembly line on July 7, 2017, and the official launch and delivery of the first 30 cars on July 28. Tesla officials predicted that monthly production would reach 20,000 vehicles, or about half the line's design capacity, by year's end. Instead, Tesla made just 260 Model 3s during the third quarter of 2017, and the company postponed its target for making 5,000 vehicles per week to March 2018.
Company officials said the base model of the all-electric car will have an estimated EPA rated range of 220 miles (350 km), a five-passenger seating capacity, front and rear trunks, and will be able to accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 5.6 seconds (0 to 100 km/h in 5.8 seconds). Tesla's Model 3 is designed to achieve a "5-Star Safety Rating" and is expected to have a drag coefficient of Cd=0.23. This will be lower than the Tesla Model S drag coefficient of Cd=0.24, which in 2014 was the lowest among current production cars. Tesla CEO Elon Musk said that the rear-wheel-drive base-model would have great traction on ice because of the fast torque response of the electric motor.
As a result of the high demand for Model 3, in May 2016 Tesla announced its decision to advance its 500,000 total-unit build-plan (combined for Model S, Model X, and Model 3) to 2018, two years earlier than previously planned, in order to accelerate its target for Model 3 output. Tesla issued US$2 billion in new shares to the stock market to finance the plan.
The Model 3 was codenamed Tesla BlueStar in the original business plan in 2007. The name Model 3, originally stylized as "Model ☰", was announced on Musk's Twitter account on July 16, 2014, however the intended name was Model E that was abandoned due to Ford's trademark on the name; Musk wanted the three current models to spell SEX, but settled with "S3X". In early 2017, after trademark opposition from Adidas, the triplicate horizontal-bar stylization was abandoned and changed to a numeric "3".
The company plans for the Model 3 are part of Tesla's three-step strategy to start with a high-price vehicle and move progressively towards lower-cost vehicles, while the battery and electric drivetrain were improved and paid for through the sales of the Roadster, Model S and Model X vehicles.
In 2013, design chief Franz von Holzhausen said that the Model 3 will "be an Audi A4, BMW 3 Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class type of vehicle that will offer everything: range, affordability, and performance" that is targeted toward the mass market. While technology from Tesla's Model S will be used in the Model 3, it will be 20% smaller than the Model S and have its own unique design. According to Tesla's CTO, JB Straubel, in October 2015 most Tesla engineers were working on the 3 rather than S or X. Since electric cars have lower cooling needs than combustion cars, the Model 3 does not have a front grille. Musk intended for the final design to be released on June 30, 2016 but when the design was finished July 27 it was not publicly released. After the final design of the first Model 3, any further changes would be included in future versions of the Model 3. The optional glass roof developed by Tesla Glass will be made of the same glass used for roof tiles; a glass roof was introduced on the Model S in late 2016.
In September 2015, Tesla announced that the Model 3 would be unveiled in March 2016. In January 2016, Musk said that the first official pictures of the car will be revealed at the end of March 2016. Delivery would begin in late 2017 first on the US West Coast and then move eastwards. Potential customers were first able to reserve their spot in the queue at Tesla stores or online on March 31 with a refundable deposit. In February 2016, Tesla indicated that the unveiling would be on March 31, 2016. Employees of Tesla and SpaceX were given early access to Model 3 reservation, and about 10,000 signed up without discount, scheduled to receive the first batch of cars. Current owners of Tesla vehicles will get priority sales after employees but before the general public, as a reward for helping pay for the development of the Model 3. Early production is usually more flawed: both the Model S and the Model X had several problems at the start of their production, but have since improved.
On the morning of March 31, 2016, tens of thousands of people waited in lines to place the refundable deposit to reserve a Model 3 for 2017 delivery, even though they had not yet seen the car. Online reservations were opened at 10:23 PM ET, and the Model 3 was unveiled just before midnight ET. During the Model 3 unveil event, it was revealed that over 115,000 people had reserved the Model 3 in less than 24 hours prior to the unveiling event; more cars than Tesla had sold by that time. 24 hours after opening reservations, Tesla had advanced orders for over 180,000 units. Two days later, Tesla said 232,000 reservations that represent potential sales of over US$11.5 billion.
One week after the unveiling, Tesla said it had over 325,000 reservations that corresponded to about US$14 billion in potential sales. Musk said that 5% of reservations correspond to the maximum of two vehicles allowed per customer, "suggesting low levels of speculation", and that 93% of Model 3 reservations are from new buyers who do not currently own a Tesla. Tesla said "this is the single biggest one-week launch of any product ever", however other product sales may eclipse this in terms of units sold (but not price), as the iPhone 6 sold over 4 million units in 24 hours. The previous record was the 1955 Citroën DS that had 80,000 deposits during the ten days of the Paris Auto Show, while the Model 3 had 232,000 reservations in two days.
According to Tesla's global vice-president Robin Ren, China is the second largest market for the Model 3 after the US. Tesla said the number of net reservations totaled about 373,000 as of May 15, 2016[update], after about 8,000 customer cancellations and about 4,200 reservations canceled by the automaker because these appeared to be duplicates from speculators. Upon its release in July 2017, there had been over 500,000 reservations for the Model 3, with Musk later clarifying there were a net of 455,000 reservations outstanding.
A study of potentially self-driving ridesharing Model 3s indicate that around 30,000 Model 3s could supply 10% of car trips around Austin, Texas at a cost equivalent to the price of private ownership, and below that of current ridesourcing.
Tesla, sometime after late 2017, plans to enter the following countries' markets for the first time with the Model 3: India, Brazil, South Africa, South Korea, Singapore, and Ireland.
The Model 3 is mostly steel, with some aluminum. Tesla plans to increase the size of Tesla Factory in Fremont, California to accommodate Model 3 production, viewed as a new and large capability.
Tesla indicated to its suppliers that it intended to double earlier-announced Model 3 production targets to 100,000 in 2017 and 400,000 in 2018 due to demand, which suppliers and some experts viewed as difficult. In the Tesla Factory, paint lines for 500,000 cars were begun in 2015, and some stamping equipment for the Model 3 was operational in August 2016. Tesla's acquisition of Grohmann Engineering, a world leader in highly-automated methods of manufacturing, was completed in January 2017. This acquisition launches Tesla Advanced Automation Germany, which will help Tesla innovate manufacturing processes to be used initially in Model 3 production. According to Tesla in late 2016, the company expected to invest between US$2 billion and US$2.5 billion in capital expenditures ahead of the start of Model 3 production.
After the two Alpha prototypes were shown (silver and black; red was a shell) in April 2016, Tesla finished the design in late July 2016. Tesla ordered parts equivalent to 300 Beta prototypes in August 2016, preparing for development of the assembly line. Once the production line is operational, the factory can make release candidates for testing before actual production begins. Tesla began building Model 3 prototypes in early February 2017 as part of the testing of the vehicle design and manufacturing processes. Tesla said that initial crash test results have been positive.
In October 2016, Tesla said its production timeline was on schedule. Again in February 2017, Tesla said that vehicle development, supply chain and manufacturing are on track to support volume deliveries of the Model 3 in the second half of 2017. Limited vehicle production began in July 2017 and volume production is scheduled to start by September 2017. Tesla plans to ramp up production to exceed 5,000 vehicles per week in Q4 and reach 20,000 vehicles per week by December 2017.
The Gigafactory is intended to produce battery packs for Model 3, but it was announced at the Nevada State of the State Address in January 2017 that Tesla will also manufacture drive units at the Gigafactory. In February 2017, Tesla said that installation of Model 3 manufacturing equipment is underway in the Fremont factory and at Gigafactory 1, where in January, production of battery cells for energy storage products began, which have the same form-factor as the cells that will be used in Model 3.
Model 3 buyers have two options as to the battery pack, one with "just over 50 kWh" providing a range of roughly 354 kilometers (220 miles) and a "long-range" pack with a capacity around 75 kWh which should provide a range of about 499 kilometers (310 miles). The latter is a $9,000 option in the U.S. This vehicle's shorter wheelbase, relative to the larger Model S and Model X, cannot accommodate the larger battery pack of up to 100 kWh used in those cars. The 2170-size lithium-ion cells, exclusive to the Tesla 3 at this time, has a higher energy density than the 18650-size lithium-ion cells used in previous Tesla vehicles by as much as 30%.
The standard Model 3 battery pack is made up of four longitudinal modules each containing the individual battery cells. For the standard range Model 3 there are 2,976 cells arranged in groups of 31 cells. For the long range Model 3 there are 4,416 cells arranged in groups of 46 cells.
In February 2016, Elon Musk said Tesla expected to repeat the delivery schedule of the S and X models, selling the highest-optioned cars, with higher margins, first to help pay for production equipment. In early 2017, Tesla changed its delivery schedule to produce relatively simpler cars initially in order to reduce production risk – a lesson learned from the complicated Model X production. The first mass-produced Model 3 cars are rear-wheel drive with the long-range battery, while the all-wheel drive option will first be available at least six months after launch and the standard battery will be available after the first few months of production. The performance version of the Model 3 will start production no earlier than April 2018. The first delivery was on July 7, 2017 to Musk himself. The first 30 production units were delivered on July 28, 2017.
Tesla's goal was to produce 1,500 units in the third quarter and increasing to 20,000 per month by December 2017. However, only 260 vehicles were manufactured during the third quarter. The company blamed product bottlenecks but said there were "no fundamental issues with the Model 3 production or supply chain" and expressed confidence about its ability to resolve the bottlenecks in the near future.
In early November 2017, Musk told investors that he could not forecast how many Model 3s would be produced by year's end, and that the production delays were due to the tightly integrated automated production line, which is efficient when working, but susceptible to bottlenecks when only one part of the process breaks down. The company was having difficulties with robots on the assembly line at Gigafactory 1, where the primary cause of the delays is a serious issue with Zone 2 (of the four zones) of the battery assembly process, caused by a "systems integration subcontractor", according to Musk. "We had to rewrite all of the software from scratch for the battery module",[clarification needed] he reported. He assured investors that Tesla had "reallocated" top engineers to work on achieving a final solution. By that time, Jon Wagner, director of battery engineering, left the company.
Musk postponed the target date for manufacturing 5,000 of the vehicles per week from December 2017 to March 2018. When asked when the company would reach a production level of 10,000 units per week, he declined to speculate. An analyst with Cowan and Company, a public relations firm, commented that "Elon Musk needs to stop over promising and under delivering".
|Standard battery model||Long-range battery model|
|220 mi (350 km) range||334 mi (540 km) range|
|5.6 second 0–60 mph (0–97 km/h) time||5.1 second 0–60 mph (0–97 km/h) time|
|130 mph (210 km/h) top speed||140 mph (225 km/h) top speed|
|50 kWh (180 MJ) battery||75 kWh (270 MJ) battery|
|Supercharging rate: 130 miles (210 km) range available after 30 minutes||Supercharging rate: 170 miles (270 km) range available after 30 minutes|
|Home charging rate: 30 miles (48 km) range per hour (240V outlet, 32A)||Home charging rate: 37 miles (60 km) range per hour (240V outlet, 40A)|
|Worldwide electrical voltage and amperage charging compatibility|
|Supercharging capability that is pay per use|
|Full self-driving hardware (not yet active), used for standard active safety measures|
|Rear wheel drive|
|Rear 12 cu ft (340 L) and front 3 cu ft (85 L) trunks with 15 cu ft (425 L) total volume|
|60/40 split folding rear seat|
|Center roof panel options: standard metal, glass, roof rack and probably solar|
|Single center mounted 15.4-inch (39 cm) LCD touchscreen in landscape orientation that combines the instrument cluster and infotainment|
|An NFC keycard and Bluetooth smartphone connection for vehicle access|
|Rear roof area is one continuous piece of glass|
|18-inch (460 mm) wheels|
|Enhanced Autopilot's lane keeping, lane changing, and self-parking modes|
|Non-black metallic paint colors|
|19-inch (480 mm) wheels|
|Dual-motor all wheel drive (production begins in second quarter 2018)|
Car design columnist Robert Cumberford said the Model 3 "is an excellent design" and praised the front fascia skin that he thinks is superior to the black plastic simulated grille of the pre-refresh Model S. Motor Trend viewed the nose as intriguing. The Model 3 has been compared to the Ford Model T, for its intended affordability as a volume-produced electric vehicle and for its limited set of options, namely range, wheels and exterior color of which all but black costs extra. Automotive journalist Doug DeMuro said the Model 3 is better than the comparably priced BMW 340i and it is the "coolest car of the year". Alex Roy stated that DeMuro's review had concentrated on hardware details and missed out on the bigger picture.
HTSLV00.0L13 … L: Lithium Ion Battery; 1 ‐ RWD Motor; 3 ‐ Model 3 Line of vehicles … The motor is a 3‐phase AC internal permanent magnet motor utilizing a six‐pole, high‐frequency design with inverter‐controlled magnetic flux.
Tesla Model 3 … Long Range … Rated horsepower: 258; … Curb Weight (lbs): 3837; Equivalent Test Weight (pounds): 4250; … Charge Depleting Range (Actual miles): 495.04 … Average voltage: 351; … Integrated Amp-hours: 222.81; … END-SOC: 78720 wh [sic]
"Now, will we actually be able to achieve volume production on July 1 next year? Of course not. The reason is that even if 99 percent of the internally produced items and supplier items are available on July 1, we still cannot produce the car because you cannot produce a car that is missing 1 percent of its components", Musk said. Under ideal conditions, automakers have launched new assembly lines in 18 months, but they typically take two to three years after the first tooling and supply contracts are signed. Tesla says the Model 3 has 6,000 to 7,000 unique components, fewer than the typical automobile with a combustion engine and the Model S, which has more than 8,000 parts.
over 10,000 reservations were placed by employees
Tesla will start by delivering the vehicles to employees in California (with Tesla and SpaceX it could be up to as many as 10,000 cars)
Musk has said that a full 93% of Model 3 pre-orders are from new buyers who do not currently own a Tesla. [...] employees of both Tesla and SpaceX will get order priority on the Model 3. Also, the company is giving priority to current Tesla owners (of a Model X, Model S, or Roadster) before the general public. [...] new cars (particularly new Teslas) tend to have a few glitches early on in their production cycles.
When a car model is brand new or "completely redesigned," that can mean new parts, new systems—and new problems.
Getting from something like 50,000 to 500,000 units is a big, big step
it has no experience in manufacturing vehicles at the volumes anticipated for the Model 3. [...] will need to develop "efficient, automated, low-cost manufacturing capabilities, processes and supply chains necessary to support such volumes"
July 1st, 2017 "impossible date". someone ordering a Model 3 today would have a chance of having it delivered by the end of 2018.
We continue to forecast a Model 3 launch at the very end of 2018 (more than 1 year later than company target) with 60k units in 2019 and 130k units in 2020.
Timeline is tough but not out of line with what GM did on the Bolt EV
Last year, the company started constructing the new paint shop which could paint 500,000 cars a year
it doesn't mean that the number of parts divided by the number of parts per vehicle necessarily means Tesla will build a fleet of 300 since some of the parts will be used for process validation outside of prototypes and other processes
Once the assembly line is installed following the beta prototype completion, the automaker produces a several "release candidates."
Musk : we're not taking any action that would cause the Model 3 timeline to be extended in any way. : We're still highly confident of reaching volume production in the second half of next year.
Our default plan as we've done in the past is that the initial sales are relatively highly optioned versions of the car, because we've got to pay back the investment of the tooling and everything, so it makes sense to have the higher optioned versions first. That's what we did with the S and obviously again with the X.
DeMuro blew his Model 3 review by ignoring Tesla's biggest secret. … If you want to understand the Model 3, read retired auto exec … Bob Lutz's screed on the future of the auto sector. … The Model 3, both in design and marketing, is beyond genius.
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