Tesla Model 3 vs Model Y: Which one should you buy?

Tesla Model 3 vs Model Y: Which one should you buy?
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Tesla makes by far the best electric vehicles in the market. People who want to buy a reliable electric vehicle with an impressive range have to choose between a Tesla and a Tesla. Of course, other automakers such as Ford, General Motors, and Porsche also offer electric vehicles. But they either lag behind Tesla in terms of range or their reliability isn’t proven yet. If you are in the market for an affordable Tesla EV, you might be wondering whether to go for the mass-market Model 3 or wait for the upcoming Model Y. This Tesla Model 3 vs Model Y comparison could help you decide.

While Tesla has been delivering Model 3 to customers for a while, the Model Y will enter production next year. Model Y is based on the same platform as Model 3. The two vehicles share three-fourths of components, allowing Tesla to speed up the Model Y development and bring it to market at the earliest. But there are still tons of differences between the two vehicles. Let’s check them out.

Model 3 vs Model Y: Design

Both Model 3 and Model Y have a grille-less front. Both vehicles have Tesla’s premium look and feel. Their aerodynamic design helps Tesla boost the range of its vehicle. While Model 3 is a sedan, Model Y is an SUV crossover.

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The Model Y borrows some of its design elements, such as the sloping roofline from the more expensive Model X. Its height is also more than that of Model 3, meaning it would offer a higher driving position and greater road visibility. The Model 3 also provides excellent visibility thanks to its low front hood.

The additional height of Model Y gives it a deep front trunk. The Model Y has an impressive 66 cubic feet of cargo space compared to just 15 cubic feet in Model 3. The Model Y will have room for up to seven adults with an optional third row. In contrast, the Model 3 can seat only five adults.

Both Model Y and Model 3 have a giant 15-inch infotainment screen on the dashboard. It not only enables over-the-air software updates but also replaces most of the buttons and switches you’d find in other cars. The interior of both electric vehicles has a minimalist feel.

Performance & features

Tesla offers Model 3 in different configurations. The base version with rear-wheel drive has a range of 250 miles and goes from 0-60mph in 5.3 seconds. It has a top speed of 140mph. The all-wheel drive (AWD) version has a range of 322 miles, though you’ll have to shell out an additional $9,000 for it. It goes from 0-60mph in just 4.4 seconds.

The top of the line Model 3 Performance has a top speed of 162mph and goes from 0-60mph in just 3.2 seconds. It goes 310 miles on a single charge.

Tesla has listed three different versions of Model Y on its website – Long Range RWD (rear-wheel drive), Long Range AWD (all-wheel drive), and Long Range Performance. The Long Range RWD will have 18- or 19-inch wheels, up to 300 miles of range, and 130mph of top speed. It will go from 0-60mph in 5.5 seconds.

The Long Range AWD will have a slightly lower range of 280 miles but a higher top speed of 135mph. It will go from 0-60mph in 4.8 seconds. The top-of-the-line Long Range Performance will have larger 20-inch Performance Wheels, all-wheel drive, 280 miles range, and a top speed of 150mph. It will go from 0-60mph in just 3.5 seconds.

Remember that these figures for Model Y could change, considering Tesla is still testing and refining the vehicle. Both Model 3 and Model Y have access to Tesla’s 1,600 Supercharger stations as well as public charging stations from EVGo, Electrify America, and ChargePoint.

Both electric vehicles have Tesla’s proprietary Autopilot semi-autonomous driving technology. It allows the car to read speed limit signs, switch lanes, apply the brake if needed, and automatically park itself. But drivers are advised to be alert at all times.

Model 3 vs Model Y: Pricing

The Tesla Model 3 costs $39,490 for the base model. The company has managed to dramatically reduce the waiting time for Model 3 in the last few months. Whichever configuration you order, you can expect delivery within a couple of months. The top of the line Model 3 Performance costs $56,990.

Officially, the Tesla Model Y was unveiled with a starting price of $39,000. But Tesla has been changing the pricing and configurations of Model 3 and Model Y. According to Electrek, the Model Y is expected to start at $43,000 and the Performance version is estimated to cost $61,000. Tesla plans to start deliveries in the summer of 2020.


So, which one is better for you? The Tesla Model 3 is available right now, but you’ll have to wait at least a year for Model Y. Buying Model 3 before Dec. 31, 2019 also means you can take advantage of the federal tax incentives. If you want more cargo space and have no need to buy an EV right now, you might want to wait for Model Y. The two vehicles are similar in terms of performance, top speed, and reliability.

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