Tesla’s Model Y has yet to open preorders in Taiwan, though numerous fanatics have been longing for the model, and some of them have even canceled the Model 3 that they just purchased upon hearing that Model Y may open preorders at the end of the year. What is so fascinating about Model Y?
First things first: if you were disappointed at Model 3, your disappointment will persist for Model Y, since the model does not “resolve” the issues of Model 3, including the assembly, interior texture, and the problem with charging.
Perhaps the only reason that you will fall in love with Model Y is that it provides additional interior spaces compared to Model 3. Let us take a look at the comparison.
▲The Model Y on the left, and the Model 3 on the right, resemble twins of different sizes.
（Source：Tesla Owners Online）
Model Y is measured at 163cm in height, which is about 20cm taller than Model 3.
Both models share 75% of components, and exhibit almost identical design languages, with the only difference seen from the dimension. One simply cannot tell if the vehicle is Model 3 or Model Y just by looking at the interior of the front seat.
▲The front seat of Model Y is almost identical to that of Model 3. （Source：Ryan Shaw）
However, Model Y is categorized as a SUV, and its seat should be elevated alongside the increased height. And how is it elevated by using the same seat as Model 3? It’s simple, add a foundation to it.
▲ The front seat of Model Y is added with an elevator that heightens the vision of the driver’s seat.
（Source：EV Revolution Show）
This simple and slightly rustic solution has allowed Tesla to create a driving sensation of SUV without additional costs, and a look at the actual height during driving indicates an additional degree of safety.
▲The driver’s elbow is almost parallel to the bottom of the windshield when driving Model Y, for which the high angle of vision provides relatively comfortable driving experience for many owners.
The increased body height has resulted in a more comfortable sitting space for Model Y, where the restricted back seat of Model 3 is now added with additional 20cm of space above and in front of the passenger’s head and legs for Model Y, with additional width at the same time. The more important element is the panoramic roof of the vehicle that makes Model 3 owners envious.
▲The panoramic roof of Model Y provides a better travel experience, with better thermal insulation and shading effects than expected.（Source：Ryan Shaw）
According to actual testing, the panoramic roof provides relatively well shading and thermal insulation effects during daytime driving; though it does feel slightly warm when touched by hands, the temperature is tolerable and provides a better reassurance than anticipated.
The most attractive element of Model Y is the enormous trunk it offers due to the adoption of an electric hatchback tailgate. In accordance with the data shown on the owner’s manual, the trunk capacity of Model Y is as high as 68 cubic foot, which is 1,925L, whereas Model 3 only provides 425L of space.
There is a small switch to the side of Model Y’s trunk that allows the backseats to become horizontal, where two 180cm adults can lie flat on the surface. Model Y has also developed a unique “Camping Mode” accordingly, which upon initiation automatically plays the animation of campfire on the screen, where the air conditioner will also remain on, allowing owners to lie inside the vehicle, and look at the stars through the panoramic roof in a soothing setting (air conditioner is automatically turned off when the battery is at 20%).
▲Horizontally placed backseats of Model Y are equivalent of a double bed.
Generally speaking, the 3 crucial features of Model Y are the reasons for refunds of Model 3 from numerous new owners:
- Panoramic roof
- Bigger interior space
- Higher angle of vision
In addition, Model Y has also improved on certain areas compared to Model 3, including the blackened window seals instead of the chromate treatment, standard electric tailgate at the trunk, and additional trailer accessories, as well as backseats that are able to slightly incline to roughly 10° that provide better comfort during long distance travels. Another thing that I personally quite enjoy is the two wireless charging bases at the front seat, as well as the two USB-C ports at the backseats.
The price of Model Y is currently about US$60K (after tax), and the final price in Taiwan is expected to be approximately TWD$2.2 million in accordance with the pricing strategy of Tesla, though prices are subject to change.
There was a rumor that the assembling quality of Model Y is way better than that of Model 3, which shouldn’t be taken seriously as the delivery status of Model Y remains to be flawed. Although Tesla has promised to fix most assembling issues, the waiting time will be long, and it is recommended to stay away from Tesla if you are bothered by chipped paint, loose headlights, and unaligned roof edges on new vehicles.
On the contrary, if you enjoy the performance of electric vehicles and the smart driving experience after seeing the Model 3, then Model Y will be something to look forward to, as the additional interior space and the panoramic roof are definitely worth the price difference.
(Cover photo source: Tesla)