While the new Tesla Model 3 has a slight facelift and redesigned interior, it remains just as powerful as the first-generation vehicle. Mat Watson from Carwow Put that to the test by having a drag race between new and old models.
These two vehicles tip the scales at 4,065 pounds (1,844 kilograms) while producing 457 horsepower (341 kilowatts) and 487 pound-feet (660 newton-meters) of torque. Before you convince you that Mat has totally lost the plot, there are a few distinct differences between the two when it comes to tires and batteries – rumor has it that the new model has a bigger battery.
Differences aside, the old model – with Mat at the helm – is victorious in the first race from a standing start. Even after changing lanes, the Gen-One Model 3 still took an early lead and held up against the competition. It’s unclear whether the results were due to reaction time or a tire advantage, but the old car is a clear winner when standing still.
Things get a little different in the rolling race where the new car takes a very close victory. It looked like Mat was winning slightly over him, but he didn’t have enough room to capitalize on such a small advantage.
While disappointing to some, these results are actually quite predictable as the changes for Gen 2 were mostly cosmetic. The fun mode is a great party trick, but Tesla is also focusing on the efficiency of its vehicles. Unlike many automakers entering the EV arena, Tesla has discovered the secret sauce for going fast and being able to go the distance.