Tesla Model 3 Won’t Get Consumer Reports Recommendation

(Photo by Harold Cunningham/Getty Images)
(Photo by Harold Cunningham/Getty Images) /

The Tesla Model 3 has been one of the brand’s most anticipated models. In the first week, it had almost 400,000 pre-orders. The car also has a ton of hype to live up to, but as reviews roll in, will it actually perform?

Some initial reviews are starting to roll in on the Tesla Model 3. This car has been billed by Tesla as one of, if not the most, influential new cars of the decade. The car meets or exceeds the performance of an average sedan, at a very similar price, all while using electric power.

The car itself is not without controversy. There have been massive production delays and quality issues on top of the other controversies that have found Tesla lately, battery fires and AutoPilot crashes have been top news for the company as of recent time.

More bad PR for Tesla.

As we are seeing the news stories covering AutoPilot crashes and production issues, Consumer Reports has given the company another blow. The new Model 3 will not be accompanied by a Consumer Reports Recommended seal.

Most buyers use Consumer Reports as something of a car buying Bible; recommended vehicles come with an extra bit of peace of mind with their recommendation. My parents live and die by the small “recommended” notation on a cars page in their magazines.

Why did the car miss on the rating?

Consumer Reports cites long braking distances and extreme difficulty in using controls as the primary reasons.

Tesla’s Model 3 was noted to have extremely inconsistent braking distances, so much so that Consumer Reports sourced a second Model 3 to ensure the results from the first car. Over the average of all the emergency stop test runs, the Model 3 stops from 60mph in 152 feet. This doesn’t seem too bad until you know the average in the class is 21 feet shorter, a big difference in an emergency situation.

Tesla says they will address the issue with an over-the-air update to the vehicle’s software. It is over my head how they can do that though.

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Difficult controls also contribute.

The Model 3’s controls are all centrally located on a massive touchscreen in the center. There is no traditional dash, this makes for complex menus to get to basic car functions. This is actually the reason my boss is selling his Model 3, he had preordered before it was confirmed that there would not be a traditional dash.

In the end, we will have to wait and see if the big gamble of a cheap car by Tesla pays off. What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comment section below.