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Living with…The truly tremendous Tesla Model 3 Long Range

Jamie Walkinshaw, an ‘EV Guru’ from the EV Experience Centre in Milton Keynes, talks to EV Powered about his Tesla Model 3 and what makes it so special.

Tell us about your EV?

I drive a 2020 Tesla Model 3 Long Range, the final revision before the 2021 refresh. A remarkably short-run batch that switched all internal USBs to USB-c, and included wireless charging for the first time.

What do you like about the exterior of your car?

The exterior of the Model 3 is what first drew me to it, as the body styling captured everything I liked about my previous ICE saloons but with Tesla’s trademark minimalism. I would also be remiss if I did not mention my Model 3 is Tesla’s range-topping Multi-Coat Red, standing out among it’s far more ordinary peers. The featureless nose on the 3 results in it looking like an imaginary Porsche competitor to the Mercedes C-class.

What about the inside?

The internal design appealed to the ex-BMW i3 owner in me, as someone that doesn’t enjoy having a road atlas to navigate my dashboard, the Model 3’s layout (or lack thereof) is a welcome breath of fresh air. I also adore the Wonka Elevator-esque glasshouse that the Model 3 houses you in, meaning that the interior never feels cramped or dark, making it feel as though I have double the space to play with.

The movement of all relevant information to the centre screen also helps with the airy feeling of the cabin, meaning that your view beyond the steering wheel is nothing but road, which while this adds to the beauty of driving, it also makes parking a doddle!

What do other people think of your car?

The cliche response everyone gives to experiencing a Tesla for the first time is their look of wonder, confusion, and then inevitably the question “is this the fast one?” I have yet to be met with a negative response to my Model 3, apart from that it is not entirely friendly to those over 6ft tall! Something I have rapidly come to realise however is that the Model 3 is far from intuitive! It has become something of a rite of passage for passengers to figure out the door handles before being able to enter, and the fun doesn’t stop there. With the Model 3’s absence of interior door handles most first-timers will find themselves trapped until they inevitably find their way to the exit buttons, often finding the emergency exit latch long before the intended one!

What do you like most about it?

My favourite thing about my Model 3 is how confident I feel when driving it. With all-wheel-drive electric traction control, it has handled weather that would stimy any other vehicle I have driven, couple that together with its instant (and slightly excessive) power, and you get a machine that does it all: Transports you and your loved ones from A to B in utmost comfort, with the power to take any emerge/roundabout gap with ease, while also allowing you to cut loose on the weekend like it’s a sports car half it’s size.

Is there anything you don’t like?

Aside from buying it 3 months before the model refresh!? My only dislike is the wheels, in that there genuinely seem to be zero attractive options. The 19″ alloys are a silvered ordinary, while the 18″ Aero Wheels issued as standard are currently occupying a begrudging ‘it’ll do’ space in my mind until the funds are available to move to something a little more adventurous.

If you could go back to the time, you bought it, would you go for something different?

Absolutely not. I suppose my only regret is not waiting for the refresh, but who was to know?

While there is an infinite number of ICE vehicles I could have stepped into that could race harder, or allow for more space/adventurous interiors, there is nothing on the market that offers the package that the Model 3 does. I would be choosing a ‘racey’ two-door space-less coupe, or a wafty executive saloon, buying a Tesla allows you to say: “Why choose?”

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