The 2022 Tesla Model 3 may not be the only entry-luxury electric vehicle (EV) on the market these days. However, the most affordable Tesla is an industry leader when it comes to the performance and technology you get for its price.
The release of the Tesla Model 3 changed the game when it came to EV accessibility for the average American consumer. Its sleek, minimalist design turns eyes—but not ears, thanks to its ultra-quiet electric motor—then zips out of sight in a single blink!
2022 Tesla Model 3 performance review
The Tesla Model 3 is just the type of car we like to see at the dealership. It has three easy
trim level optionsto choose from, and each of them boasts impressive performance stats.
The entry-level 2022 Model 3—simply called the Rear-Wheel Drive trim—starts at $48,440 and features a brand-new battery compared to its 2021 entry-level predecessor, the Model 3 Standard Range. The 2022 Model 3 Long Range is the next trim level up and starts at $59,440, followed by the top-tier Performance trim, which starts at $64,440.
The Model 3 is the most affordable offering in Tesla’s current line-up. While there are plenty of competitors on the road, including the recent
Ford Mustang Mach-E Selectand the budget-friendly
Chevrolet Bolt EV LT, there’s no denying the draw of the Tesla name. Drivers love the Model 3’s blend of cutting-edge technology, crisp handling, and tantalizing performance.
Powertrain options and handling
Each of the Model 3’s three trims has its own powertrain configuration, built around a 350 V lithium-ion battery at its base.
Thanks to the positioning of its battery under the car, every Model 3 carries an incredibly low center of gravity for dynamic and smooth handling. It may feel like you’re driving a
sports car, but rest assured the 2022 Model 3 is a perfect candidate for your daily commute.
Acceleration, 0 to 60, and top speed
Handling isn’t the only thing the Model 3 does well. Compared to its competitors, the Model 3 is one of the fastest EVs you can buy.
While it’s hard to see the difference between the Model 3’s different electric powertrain configurations on paper, it becomes instantly clear once you pull out a stopwatch. Here are the zero-to-60 acceleration times for each of the 2022 model’s three trims:
- Rear-Wheel Drive: 5.8 seconds
- Long Range: 4.2 seconds
- Performance: 3.1 seconds
The Model 3 RWD tops out at 140 mph and the 2022 Model 3 Long Range can push the speedometer to 145 mph. The 2022 Performance model naturally takes the gold with a top speed of 162 mph—perfect for adding a bit of thrill to your weekly grocery run!
Here’s how the speed stats of some of the 2022 Model 3’s top competitors compare:
- 2022 BMW i4 M50: zero-to-60 time of 3.9 seconds; top speed of 140 mph
- 2022 Polestar Polestar 2 AWD:zero-to-60 time of 4.1 seconds; top speed of 125 mph
- 2022 Chevrolet Bolt: zero-to-60 time of 6.5 seconds; top speed of 93 mph
The i4 and Polestar 2 are both relatively new players on the EV field, but as you can see, neither can outdo the comparable Model 3 Performance. It may seem unfair to compare the much less impressive Chevy Bolt, but we want you to see just what the $20,000 price difference is getting you.
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Fuel economy and range
The maximum Tesla Model 3 driving rangeis 353 miles for the Long Range trim—thanks to an extra 32kWh of battery capacity. The Performance model is rated for 315 miles on a single charge and the Model 3 Rear Wheel Drive brings up the rear with a starting range of 272 miles—nine miles more than the previous model year!
You can charge your 2022 Model 3 with Tesla’s network of Superchargers, an onboard DC fast-charging adapter, 240- and 120-volt outlets, and even an at-home charging station. A Tesla Supercharger can recharge your Model 3 with 200 miles worth of driving in just 15 minutes, but other charging times will vary depending on the trim and charging method you use.
A standard 2022 Model 3 Rear Wheel Drive has an EPA rating of 132 MPGe combined. The Long Range and Performance models are rated for 131 and 113 MPGe, so you can see the extra performance costs a slight dip in efficiency. Either way, there’s no denying the fuel costs you’ll save, by going electric with a Tesla Model 3.
Tesla’s reputation is practically built on innovative technology and the Model 3 shows it. The interior isn’t flashy with gadgets—most of its features are displayed and controlled on a single 15-inch touchscreen in the center of the dash. But what meets the eye is very different from what you get once the power’s on.
The Model 3’s cabin is fitted with plenty of luxury touches including heated, power-adjustable bucket seats, a heated steering wheel, Bluetooth connectivity, and wireless smartphone charging. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are surprisingly not offered, but there are plenty of other ways to get the features you would have used these for.
Navigation, maps, and voice commands come standard in the center dash’s infotainment features, but you can upgrade to Premium connectivity which adds the following:
- Live-traffic and satellite-view maps and navigation
- A web browser
- Music streaming and video streaming platforms (for while you wait during a charge-up)
- Tesla’s Caraoke feature
The Tesla Model 3’s expansive suite of driver-assistance features—called Autopilot (somewhat confusingly)—is also controlled through the center console and includes the following:
- Automated emergency braking
- Lane departure warning
- Blind-spot monitoring
- Adaptivecruise control
- Automatic lane change and parking assistance
Thanks to this technology, the 2022 Tesla Model 3 earned a Top Safety Pick+ from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and a perfect five-star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (
How to save on Tesla Model 3 insurance
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