Electric vehicles are a new thing on the market. Demand in Malta for electric vehicles is still very low despite various government grants incentivising the use of electric vehicles, such as the car scrappage scheme, and the possibility to use priority lanes. The reality is that electric vehicles are still expensive to buy when compared to their petrol/diesel counterparts. Tesla has already tried changing that with the release of the Tesla Model S and the Tesla Model X. However, these cars are considered premium luxury cars and are expensive to buy. Now, Tesla has released the Model 3 which promises to be an affordable electric vehicle. Yet offer autonomous driving and other premium features.
The new Tesla Model 3 has its batteries stored at the bottom of the car. This makes it handle very well in corners, as the weight is all placed at the bottom of the car. The downside is that this also makes the car feel heavier on the road.
The Model 3 is not a small car, measuring 184.8 inches in length. This can make it a bit frustrating to park in busy areas such as Sliema. Due to its length, it can seat 5 passengers easily. There is plenty of luggage space, as the front where the engine usually is, can be used as storage since there is no engine, together with the luggage booth.
The Model 3 is also one of the safest cars, even more secure than the new Volvo models, which are touted to be the safest cars on the road.
Prices in the United States for a new Tesla Model 3 start from $35,000 without any incentives. Thus, expect the price to get one in Malta to be around 40,000 Euro. This is not cheap by any means, considering that a new Range Rover Evoque starts at around 39,000 Euro and a specced out VW Golf Highline can be bought for around 30,000 Euro. But the Model 3 might then pay off later on, as no petrol/diesel is needed to run it. The batteries have an 8 year or 100,000 mile warranty, thus expect them to last around 8 years.
Servicing the car will prove to be the biggest headache, as there are no Tesla dealers in Malta, and not many car garages are knowledgeable nor equipped to service an electric car.
There are various spots around Malta where one can plug-in their car for free. Expect more charging points to be added soon, as electric cars become more prevalent on the Maltese Islands. The Model 3 will be able to do 220 miles on a single charge, thus requiring an average commuter to charge the car once or twice every week.
The new Tesla Model 3 is indeed a game changer, making electric cars more appealing and cheaper to own. For the Maltese however, the Model 3 is difficult to buy and might be a nuisance to run over time. As automotive companies start to shift towards electric cars by 2020, such as VW, BMW, and Ford, electric cars will become more accessible for us living in Malta. Until then, electric cars are still a dream which might someday become a reality.
The Tesla Model 3
Model 3 is a smaller, simpler and a more affordable electric car. Designed and built as the world’s first mass-market electric vehicle, it is a critical step in Tesla’s mission to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.
Like every Tesla vehicle, Model 3 combines range, performance, safety and technology. Intelligent design maximizes interior space to comfortably fit five adults and all of their gear. The high-efficiency powertrain provides zero to 60 mph acceleration in as little as 5.1 seconds.
Model 3 is designed to achieve the highest safety ratings in every category. Combined with 220* to 310 miles of range and a starting price of $35,000 before incentives, Model 3 is Tesla’s most affordable vehicle yet.
Model 3 is currently in production, and deliveries to employee reservation holders began on July 28, 2017 at the Tesla Factory in Fremont, CA. Reservations for Model 3 first opened on March 31, 2016 and remain available today.
Price – $35,000
- Range: 220 miles (EPA estimated)
- Supercharging rate: 130 miles of range per 30 minutes
- Home charging rate: 30 miles of range per hour (240V outlet, 32A)
- Deliveries begin: Fall 2017
- 0-60 mph: 5.6 seconds
- Top speed: 130 mph
- 15” touchscreen display
- Dual zone climate control system
- FM/Internet streaming radio
- Textile seating
- Front center console with open storage and two USB ports
- Onboard maps and navigation
- Wi-Fi and LTE internet connectivity
- Keyless entry and remote climate control using the Tesla app
- Voice activated controls
- Bluetooth hands-free calling and media streaming
- 60/40 split folding rear seat to maximize cargo options
- Back-up camera
- Auto dimming rear-view mirror
- One-touch power windows throughout
- Power-adjustable side mirrors
- 12-volt power outlet
- Full LED exterior lighting
- Eight cameras, forward radar and twelve ultrasonic sensors enabling active safety technologies including collision avoidance and automatic emergency braking
- Six front row and two side curtain airbags
- Three-point safety belts with belt-reminders for driver and four passengers
- Two LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) attachments in second row
- Electronic stability and traction control
- Four-wheel antilock disc brakes with electronic parking brake
- Child safety locks
- Anti-theft alarm system
- Tire pressure monitoring system
- Vehicle: 4 year, 50,000 mile limited warranty
- Battery warranty: 8 year, 100,000 mile (120,000 mile with Long Range Battery)
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