Tesla revamps the Model 3 Performance

Tesla has unveiled the new Model 3 Performance. Since the switch to the revised 'Highland', there has been no Performance version of the Tesla Model 3 - until now. And the most powerful Model 3 now differs noticeably from the basic versions.

Image: Tesla

The Performance version of the Model 3 Highland offers 338 kW of system power, accelerates from 0 to 100 kph in 3.1 seconds and reaches a top speed of 262 kph. However, there are slight differences in the performance data, depending on where the Model 3 Performance was built. In the German press release, Tesla speaks of 460 hp or the equivalent of 338 kW. This output and 723 Nm of maximum torque apply to the Model 3 Performance from Giga Shanghai, where Tesla also builds the cars for Europe. In that case, the vehicle apparently has a 79 kWh battery with cells from LGES.

As the Twitter account TeslaNewswire shows in an overview, the Model 3 Performance built in the US (specifically at the Fremont plant) has an output of 375 kW, a maximum torque of 741 Nm, and uses an 82 kWh battery made from Panasonic round cells. Acceleration in the US version is given as 2.9 seconds – but from a standstill to 60 mph, i.e. only 96 kph. Since acceleration in the US is also often specified as a ‘rolling start’, the two-tenths of a second difference was unsurprising even without the difference in performance.

This article will look at the version from Giga Shanghai, as it is also sold in Germany and other European countries. Tesla specifies the WLTP range here as up to 528 kilometres, i.e. 101 kilometres less than the version “Long Range All-Wheel Drive”. The WLTP range for this version was certified with the 19-inch “Nova” rims; Tesla only states an “estimated” range of 678 kilometres for the 18-inch “Photon” rims.

The hardware changes in the new Model 3 Performance are more extensive than before. That is because some criticised the top-of-the-range model for being too different from the standard versions of the Model 3 – 20-inch rims, different brakes (barely visible), and a carbon rear spoiler were previously the most obvious distinguishing features from the outside – in addition to the slightly lowered sports suspension. All these points have remained the same, but the Model 3 Performance now has a different front apron, for example. The lower air intake was slightly modified, a sporty front splitter was added at the bottom, and – unlike the standard versions – there are air intakes for so-called air curtains on the sides of the bumper, which improve the airflow around the front wheels. In addition to the carbon spoiler at the top, there is now also a diffuser at the bottom of the rear. The interior of the Model 3 Performance now also has a more distinctive look. There is visible carbon on the dashboard and exclusive sports seats at the front, which also feature the new Performance logo.

The new 20-inch rims with Pirelli tyres specially developed for the Model 3 Performance will have a “sharper turning behaviour, better predictability and better traction out of corners”. Also new is the adaptive damping technology, which is fully controlled by Tesla’s in-house software and integrated into the Tesla Vehicle Dynamics Controller (VDC). “This next-generation system enables ultimate driving performance without sacrificing everyday usability,” says Tesla in its German press release. “The latest generation of Track Mode now integrates adaptive chassis control with a performance-optimised powertrain that responds instantly to driver input for maximum control. With the Track Mode activated, you can customise the handling, stability control and regenerative braking system via a completely new user interface.”

Model 3 Performance FremontModel 3 Performance Shanghai
Power375 kW338 kW
Torque741 Nm723 Nm
Acceleration2.9 s (0-60mph)3.1 s
Top speed– kph262 kph
WLTP range– km528 km
Battery capacity82 kWh79 kWh

Deliveries of the new Model 3 Performance will begin in Germany in the second quarter – the Tesla configurator specifically mentions the timeframe from May to June 2024. That means the first Performance models could be delivered in just a few weeks. The starting price is 56,990 euros.

The delivery estimate for other European countries, the US, and Asian countries is also from May to June 2024. In China, it sells from 335,900 yuan ($46,360), making it nearly 45 per cent more expensive than the entry-level version.

In the US, the new Model 3 Performance is available from 52,990 dollars. However, it qualifies for the 7,500 dollar tax credit there, making it less expensive than the Long-Range version. The latter starts at 47,740 dollars – but does not qualify for the US tax credit. Including the EV incentive, the Performance version will be available from $45,490 in the States.

Source: Info via email, tesla.com (configurator UK) twitter.com (differences Fremont/Shanghai), cnevpost.com (China), tesla.com (configurator US), twitter.com (tax credit)


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