2021 Tesla Model 3 electric

MSRP $39,990 - $56,990

Ranked #8 in Sedan

7.9

Overall Rating

FILTER BY YEAR

FILTER BY STYLE

2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Price, Review, Ratings and Pictures

Updated on: July 9, 2021

Nathan Dyer's image
Nathan Dyer 

Senior Editor


Tesla is truly the gold standard when it comes to EVs in general. The Tesla Model 3 is the most affordable proposition and it doesn’t fail to impress. The 2021 Tesla Model 3 comes with some upgrades while being a carryover model that was part of the first generation introduced in 2017. For 2021 the Model 3’s exterior, as well as the interior, has been reworked with new trims on offer along with improvements in range and fuel economy. The new Tesla Model 3 is powered by single/dual electric motors putting out the best-in-class power and torque.

See detailed review »

Pros

Impressive range

Roomy interior and comfortable seats

Superb infotainment unit

Cons

No Apple CarPlay or Android Auto integration

The touchscreen can be distracting at times

Looks too simple and plain

What's New?

Increased range and fuel efficiency

New interior and exterior trim

Standard Wireless Charging


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$39990

bodystyle

4dr Sedan

passenger capacity

5

top speed

140 mph

drivetrain

rear wheel drive

engine type

horsepower

258 hp

torque

317 lb.-ft.

transmission

1 speed automatic

chassis

brake rotors (f/r)

12.6/13.2 in.

dimensions

wheelbase

113.2 in.

length

184.8 in.

width

72.8 in.

height

56.8 in.

curb weight

3648 lbs.

ground clearance

5.5 in.

capacity

passenger volume

97 cu ft.

cargo volume

84.3 cu ft.

towing capacity

3500 lbs.

payload capacity

1595 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

5.3 sec.

zero to 100 mph

13.6 sec.

standing 1/4-mile

13.8 sec.

braking (70-0 mph)

176 ft.

warranty

basic warranty

3 yr./ 36000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

5 yr./ 60000 mi.

powertrain warranty

8 yr./100000 mi.

corrosion warranty

5 yr./ unlimited mi.

roadside assistance

Yes

ev battery warranty

8 yr./ 100000 mi.


Pictures & Videos


Trims

Standard Plus$39,990 onwards

Long Range$48,990 onwards

Performance$56,990 onwards

Colors and Styles

2021 Tesla Model 3 electric in Red Multi-Coat color
Red Multi-Coat

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Pricing and Features

8.9

Engine and Performance

8.3

Fuel Economy

9.5

Interior

8.0

Exterior

8.0

Safety

8.5

Competition

8.1

7.9

OVERALL RATING

Expert Review, Pricing Analysis and Buying Guide

7.9

Overall Rating


The base variant comes in an RWD drivetrain while the higher trims feature an AWD drivetrain. Pricing starts at $39,990 and goes up to more than $56,990 for the top-end Performance trim. The Model 3 is available in three trim options at varying price points. The 2021 Tesla Model 3 competes with the 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E, 2021 Hyundai Kona Electric, and the 2021 Kia Niro EV. Let’s see if it’s still the king in the segment, now that new EV competition has popped up. 

2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Sedan front view
2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Sedan rear view

8.3/10
Engine and Performance

9.5/10
Fuel Economy

8.0/10
Interior

8.0/10
Exterior

8.5/10
Safety

8.1/10
Competition


2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Features

The new Tesla Model 3 is available in three distinct trim lines. The base variant is the Standard Range Plus which comes with a single motor RWD setup that reaches 0 to 60mph in 5.3 seconds and has a range of 263 miles while the top speed is limited to 140mph. The other two variants are powered by a dual-motor setup along with an AWD drivetrain. The mid-level Long Range variant upgrades the performance figures by reaching 60mph in 4.2 seconds and lifting the top speed limit to 145mph. 

The range is also extended to 353 miles which is the highest range provided by any Model 3 trim. The Performance trim as the name suggests is the fastest and most powerful one that gains a speed of 60mph in 3.1 seconds while the top speed is limited at 162mph and the range goes down to 315 miles. The following table shows the detailed list and differences of features of each trim of the 2021 Tesla Model 3.

Trims

Standard Range Plus

Long Range

Performance 

MSRP

$39,990

$46,990

$56,990

Key Features

7.6-kW onboard charger

11.5-kW onboard charger

Track-oriented driving mode

 

170 kW max Supercharging

250 kW max Supercharging

Aluminum pedals

 

Custom audio system with immersive sound

Premium audio with 14 speakers, 1 subwoofer, 2amps, and immersive sound

20’’ Überturbine Wheels

 

Heated front seats

Interior Floor Mats

Performance Brakes

 

Tinted glass roof with ultraviolet and infrared protection

Heating for all 5 seats with individual controls

Carbon fiber spoiler

 

Blind-spot monitoring

Heated steering wheel

Aluminum alloy pedals

 

Front collision warning

Lowered suspension

 

Side collision warning

We Recommend

The mid-level Long Range trim would be the ideal option in the Tesla Model 3 lineup. This trim gets a lot more features and luxury compared to the base trim along with faster charging and a faster onboard charger. The Long Range as the name suggests is the one with the longest available range among all of the trims. It is a major advantage as a longer range is very important for an EV.

2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Engine and Performance

8.3/10

The powertrain of the 2021 Tesla Model 3 consists of a single electric motor setup mated to the rear wheels in the base Standard Range Plus trim while both of the higher trims feature a dual-electric motor setup powering all four wheels. All trims are mated to the same 1-speed direct-drive transmission which is standard among EVs. The RWD Standard Range Plus trim outputs 266 hp which gets upgraded to 346 hp in the Long Range trim and to an even increased 430 hp in the Performance trim. 

We have discussed the acceleration figures of the different trims of the Model 3 earlier. However, even the RWD base model is among the fastest in the competition. And also about the competition, the Model 3 is a sedan, but there are no worthy sedan competitors for the Model 3 in the price range. The Model 3 has phenomenal acceleration and in the higher models with the added grip and stability of the AWD drivetrain is a superb machine offering blistering acceleration. 

Models

2021 Tesla Model 3 Long Range

2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E Select AWD

2021 Hyundai Kona Electric Ultimate

2021 Kia Niro EV EX Premium

MSRP

$48,990

$46,595

$45,600

$44,650

Engine

Dual Electric motor setup

Single/Dual Electric motor setup

Single Electric Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motor (PMSM)

Single Electric Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motor (PMSM)

Drivetrain

AWD

RWD/AWD

FWD

FWD

Transmission

1-speed direct drive

1-speed direct drive

1-speed direct drive

1-speed direct drive

Power (hp @ rpm)

346 hp

266 hp

201 hp

201 hp

Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)

389 lb-ft

317 lb-ft.

291 lb-ft

291 lb-ft

0-60 mph (sec)

4.0

5.8

6.4

6.5

Quarter Mile (sec)

11.7

14.0

15.0

14.8

Top Speed (mph)

145

N/A

N/A

N/A

The 2021 Tesla Model 3 absolutely dominates all of the competition in terms of performance. It is the fastest accelerating and the most powerful one among the competitors. The competition here is a mixed bag, as there are no electric sedans in the price range that are comparable to the Tesla Model 3. Hence we have taken the base variant of the Ford Mustang Mach-E, and the top-end trims of the Hyundai Kona and Kia Niro EX twins. The is a capable contender against the Model even though it is not as fast as the Tesla. However, the Model 3 wrecks both the other vehicles and keeps the speed crown for itself in this model year also.

How well does the 2021 Tesla Model 3 Drive and Handle?

The 2021 Tesla Model 3 is an amazing performer offering impressive handling and corner-carving abilities. The battery pack placed under the floor provides the car with an extremely low center of gravity resulting in immense grip and stability. The Model 3 tackles corners aggressively and blasts out of them with exquisite grace and control. The steering is also well-weighted and precise. 

2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Sedan ride and handling

The Model 3 also comes with a great ride quality that will keep you and all other occupants comfortable. The suspension is set on the firmer side for enhanced performance but Tesla has done this without compromising ride quality. The Tesla is undoubtedly the best handling machine in the segment offering the most engaging driving experience. The Mustang Mach-E follows it in terms of drivability and driving dynamics. 

How efficient is the braking performance of the 2021 Tesla Model 3? 

The 2021 Tesla Model 3 is equipped with a set of strong brakes, but its functionality is questionable. The car comes with 13.2-inch rotors in the front and 12.6-inch ones in the rear. These seem to be larger units but they do not perform efficiently in bringing the vehicle to a stop. The 2021 Tesla Model 3 stops at a distance of 152 ft which is the worst in the segment and that can be said without much research. 

Model

2021 Tesla Model 3 Long Range

2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E Select AWD

2021 Hyundai Kona Electric Ultimate

2021 Kia Niro EV EX Premium

Brake Rotors Front

12.6

N/A

12.0

11.0

Brake Rotors Rear

13.2

N/A

11.8

10.3

Curb Weight

4,250

4,394

3,836

3,854

Braking Distance 60-0 (ft.)

152

109

N/A

N/A

The Mustang Mach-E is the best performer in the braking department. It stops at a distance of 109ft from a speed of 60mph. The Mach-E’s regenerative braking technology is also the best in the game which can even bring the vehicle to a complete stop just by taking your foot off the accelerator pedal. The Tesla is a bad machine considering its worst braking performance and it is disappointing considering that it is the fastest and most powerful one. 

2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Fuel Economy

9.5/10

The 2021 Tesla Model 3 is equipped with an 82kWh battery pack that helps it to achieve a maximum range of 353 miles which is an impressive distance an EV can cover in a single charge. The eMPG figures of the Long Range model are really good. The Model 3 delivers fuel efficiency of 134 empg in the city, 141 on the highway, and a combined range of 127empg. The Model 3 takes less than an hour to supercharge while the provided home charger takes more than 11 hours to fully charge the car. Tesla warrants the Model 3’s battery for 8 years or 120,000 miles, whichever comes first.

Models 

2021 Tesla Model 3 Long Range

2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E Select AWD

2021 Hyundai Kona Electric Ultimate

2021 Kia Niro EV EX Premium

eMPG (City)

134

105

132

123

eMPG (Highway)

141

93

120

102

eMPG (Combined)

127

100

108

112

Battery Capacity (KWh)

82

75.7

39.2

39.2

AC Charging Time (hours)

11.2

8.8

9.0

9.5

Range ( Miles)

353

230

258

239

The Model 3 beats all of the competition in terms of fuel economy and range. The increase in fuel economy is drastic compared to the competition and that makes it worth every penny paid extra. The battery pack inside the Model 3 is also the largest and the Tesla supercharger network as we know is spread wide across the country and that is also a major advantage. The Model 3 remains the undefeated champion in terms of range and efficiency also and we can expect it to increase again in future models.

2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Interior

8.0/10

The Tesla Model 3 features an all-black interior as standard while a black and white themed interior is optional. The Model 3 further comes with an all-vegan interior that supports an eco-friendly movement to eliminate the usage of leather. The interior is in typical Tesla design which is in the usual simple manner which some people might find to be interesting while others would just hate it. 

​  2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Sedan dashboard

The interior is spacious and is roomy to accommodate five people comfortably. The interior design is the most modern and all of the controls of the car collaborated into the central touchscreen which is futuristic but sometimes does feel cluttered. This is especially evident when the climate controls of the car need to be adjusted as they have also been baked into the touchscreen. The Model 3 also comes with a 15.0 cargo capacity which is not very much. 

​  2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Sedan front seats

Models

2021 Tesla Model 3 Long Range

2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E Select AWD

2021 Hyundai Kona Electric Ultimate

2021 Kia Niro EV EX Premium

Seating Capacity

5

5

5

5

Front Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Leg Room, in inches)

40.3/56.3/42.7

38.9/7.6/41.7

38.0/55.5/41.5

40.1/56.0/41.7

Rear Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Leg Room, in inches)

37.7/54.0/35.2

38.3/55.9/38.1

37.7/54.5/33.4

37.7/55.1/36.0

Cargo Capacity

15.0

29.7

19.2

18.5

The 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E comes with the most beautiful interior among all of these machines. The Tesla also has a premium interior, but the Mach-E has a more elegant cabin that is very much as futuristic as the Tesla. The Mustang Mach-E is also the most spacious among the competition providing superb legroom measuring 38.1 inches in the second row. The Mustang also offers more customization options on the interior with much more color themes and materials to choose from. The following are some of the most important features inside the cabin of the 2021 Tesla Model 3-

  • Heated steering wheel
  • Heated seats
  • Power adjustable front seats
  • Heated front and rear seats
  • Heated steering wheel
  • Tinted glass roof with ultraviolet and infrared protection
  • Interior floor mats

How intuitive is the 2021 Tesla Model 3’s infotainment unit?

The 2021 Tesla Model 3 features a 15-inch touchscreen unit that is the heart of the machine and controls the whole functioning of the car. The infotainment system and the touchscreen unit are one of the best in the business right now. It comes with timely updates and controls the whole functioning of the vehicle. 

​  2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Sedan infotainment screen

The infotainment unit also features video streaming functionality allowing access to content from streaming websites including Netflix, Hulu, Youtube, Twitch, and much more. The audio unit is a 14-speaker surround system that comes as standard in the mid-spec and higher-spec trims. The following are some of the most important infotainment features in the Model 3- 

  • Premium audio with 14 speakers, 1 subwoofer, 2amplifiers, and immersive sound
  • The 15-inch touchscreen infotainment unit
  • Wireless charger 
  • USB-A port in the glovebox with a 128GB portable storage device included
  • Live traffic visualization
  • Satellite-View Maps
  • Video Streaming 

2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Exterior

8.0/10

The 2021 Tesla Model 3 is available in 5 color options which are not many, but plenty enough though. The Tesla Model 3 on the exterior also sticks to the simplistic design language which through my eyes is a bit too simplistic and too plain. However, it does have grace and certain aerodynamics that make it stand out from the usual crowd. The design language is all around sleek and fluidic delivering a flowing ambiance while the Model 3 is on the move.

​  2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Sedan 

The wheels on the Model 3 are 18-inch Aero alloy wheels as standard while 19’-inch Sport wheels are an available option. The Performance trim, however, features a more sporty appearance featuring exclusive 20’’ Uberturbine alloy wheels and a carbon fiber spoiler. The Model 3 cannot be considered the most beautiful machine in the segment, but it does have a specific look that differentiates it from the others. 

Models

2021 Tesla Model 3 Long Range

2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E Select AWD

2021 Hyundai Kona Electric Ultimate

2021 Kia Niro EV EX Premium

Curb Weight (lbs)

4,250

4,394

3,836

3,854

Length (inches)

184.8

185.6

164.6

172.2

Width (inches)

72.8

74.1

70.9

71.1

Height (inches)

56.8

64.0

61.2

61.8

Ground Clearance (inches)

5.5

5.7

6.2

6.1

Wheelbase (inches)

113.2

117.5

102.4

106.3

The Ford is the heaviest among the competition while the Tesla follows with a slightly lower weight. The Tesla, however, has the longest wheelbase while the Mustang Mach-E is larger in all dimensions. The Mach-E and the Model 3 are the most beautiful machines in this comparison and a choice to be made on exterior appearance would be subjective. The following are some of the standout safety features of the Tesla Model 3-

  • Tinted glass roof with ultraviolet and infrared protection
  • LED fog lamps
  • Power folding, auto-dimming, heated side mirrors
  • 18’’ Aero Wheels
  • Available 19’’ Sport Wheels

2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Safety

8.5/10

The new Tesla Model 3 comes equipped with a lot of safety and driver assistance features including Autopark and Summon which are features that help the owner to park the machine automatically and also bring the vehicle to the user automatically. The Tesla Model 3 also gets the absolute best safety ratings from both NHTSA as well as IIHS. The safety ratings consist of 5-star ratings under all parameters from NHTSA and the Top Safety Pick+ award from IIHS. This assures that the 2021 Tesla Model 3 is an amazingly safe machine and one of the safest vehicles in the world. The following are some of its standout safety features-

  • Automatic emergency braking
  • Blind-spot monitoring
  • Front collision warning
  • Side collision warning
  • Emergency lane departure avoidance and correction
  • Obstacle aware acceleration
  • Cabin Overheat Protection

2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Competition

8.1/10

2021 Tesla Model 3 vs 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E

The Ford Mustang Mach-E is the more spacious option among both and it is also the better looking one on the inside as well as from the exterior. Tesla, however, is the faster, more powerful machine offering more range and fuel efficiency. As these vehicles belong different body styles and structures, the choice is subjective, the Tesla Model 3 is the more planted and better-handling machine whereas the Mach-E is the more practical and spacious machine of

2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E

2021 Tesla Model 3 vs 2021 Hyundai Kona Electric

The Hyundai Kona electric only has a price advantage over the Model 3. The Tesla Model 3 dominates the Kona under almost all criteria. It is the more powerful and faster vehicle offering a better range and fuel efficiency. The Kona electric is a more affordable option compared to the Tesla, but the Tesla Model 3 is worth every extra penny paid. 

2021 Hyundai Kona Electric

2021 Tesla Model 3 vs 2021 Kia Niro EV

The Kia Niro EV is very similar and mostly identical to the Hyundai Kona electric. So that also means that Tesla dominates the Niro also in terms of performance, range as well as space. The Tesla is the best option unless you want a much cheaper option with a capable powertrain and a respectable range. Otherwise, the Model 3 would be the best option.

2021 Kia Niro EV

 

2021 Tesla Model 3 electric Final Verdict

The 2021 Tesla Model 3 remains to be the undefeated champion in the segment and the price range. It is the fastest and most powerful option for the price paid while also delivering the most range and fuel economy. The design might seem skeptical for some eyes, but it is actually pretty nice. The interior is also spacious and features a luxurious but simple cabin with all the needed features. The central touchscreen unit is the best one in any vehicle of the price range and works very well in controlling the whole machine. Overall, the 2021 Tesla Model 3 is a superb electric car. 

Similar Cars

2021 Honda Accord hybrid Sedan
2021 Honda Accord hybrid Sedan

MSRP: $25,620- $27,920

8.2/10
2021 Toyota Mirai electric
7.7/10