Here’s the full list of changes to the Tesla Model 3. Faster, further, and cheaper: time for the competition to panic

    Yesterday, Tesla updated the Model 3 and while new images of the car, along with details in the configurator revealed some changes, we now have the complete official list of changes from Tesla.

    The latest Model 3 now benefits from a series of ongoing quality and efficiency improvements. The most notable of which is the introduction of the Model Y heat pump HVAC system to the latest Model 3 variants.

    This, combined with the updated tyres and other improvements to powertrain and software, causes Model 3 to beat its own record as the world’s most efficient mass-production car. 

    When the Model Y was created, it was designed to use as much as 70% of the same components as the Model 3. This strategy creates a massive volume or orders from suppliers, allowing Tesla to bargain for better price per unit costs. Internally developed items also receive the same cost efficiencies associated with volume production.

    In many ways, the Model Y leapfrogged the Model 3, but those improvements to common components, are now flowing from the mid-sized SUV, back to the sedan.

    Exterior Updates 

    Trim Updates  

    • Satin black side repeaters, door handles and brightwork  

    Wheel/Tire Updates  

    • More efficient tires across the range  
    • Updated 18/19” Sport Wheels  
    • Model 3 Performance with new 20” Uberturbine wheels 

    Power trunk  

    • Opens at the touch of a button on the trunk itself or from the touchscreen or the Tesla app.  

    Interior Updates 

    Updated Trim  

    • Matte black finish replaces the gloss ‘piano’ black finish,  
    • Satin black sill plates 
    • Graphite finish seat controls  
    • Metalised scroll wheels on steering,  


    • Magnetic closure to snap back into place 

    Redesigned centre console  

    • Fixed inductive charging mats for two smartphones 
    • Updated front compartment with sliding lid 

    USB ports  

    • Two additional high-powered USB-C ports for high-speed device charging 
    • Plus an additional USB-A port in the glove compartment to use for storage devices for Sentry Mode and Dash Cam footage 

    Updated Stats  

    Variant  New Range (NEDC)   Old Range (NEDC) 0-100kph   Top Speed  Price (excl. on roads)
    Model 3 Standard Range Plus490km460km5.6225kmph$66,900
    Model 3 Long Range   657km  620km 4.4 s  233kph  $81,900
    Model 3 Performance   628km 560km 3.3 s  261kph  $90,900

    If you’re an auto manufacturer offering a vehicle that competes in the mid-sized premium sedan category, it’s time to be concerned. While brand loyalty can impact buying decisions, if you take into consideration the total cost of ownership, the performance, the features and growing Autopilot/FSD capabilities, the Model 3 is a seriously compelling offer.

    By way of comparison, the 2021 BMW M3 starts at $144,900 plus on road costs. The 2021 Jaguar I-PACE starts at $128,860 plus on road costs. For those prices, you’d really have to be committed to the badge, and hate money, to choose them over the Model 3.

    For those automakers still producing ICE vehicles, you have an increasingly difficult job, with EVs offering lower running costs (recharging less than refueling, service costs a lot less), the total cost of ownership is significantly lower. Tesla continues to turn the knife by adding extra range and features, while also finding cost savings.

    If you work at a legacy automaker, I’d strongly encourage you to have conversations with your management about running, not walking to EVs. We are headed for a point in time where demand for ICE vehicles will fall off a cliff as consumer expectations rapidly shift.

    When a standard vehicle development cycle takes 3-5 years, if you wait until your demand falls away, you’ll have no viable product for years, placing your job and the future of the company in jeopardy. Make no mistake, this transition to electric vehicles do not care about your 100-year+ history.

    While the driveaway purchase price of today’s EVs often mean they land in the premium segment, Tesla revealed a more affordable small car on Battery Day last month. This means Tesla isn’t stopping, they’re not just stealing market share from BMW, Audi and Mercedes, but Mazda, Toyota, Ford and GM should all be on high alert.

    You can see more detail on the Model 3 Design Studio, if you go on to buy, just make sure you use a referral link to get 1,500km of free Supercharging, as you can’t add this after the fact.  

    Jason Cartwright
    Jason Cartwright
    Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021

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