Tesla Model 3: range, battery & charging
Not only does the Tesla Model 3 offer superb range, but full access to the amazing Supercharger network
Wallbox charge time
Rapid charge time
9hrs 15mins (0-100%, 7.4kW)
25mins (10-80%, 170kW)
12hrs (0-100%, 7.4kW)
27mins (10-80%, 250kW)
Range anxiety is slowly becoming less and less of a concern in the world of EVs, with the longest range electric cars able to travel over 400 miles on a single charge. Thanks to a recent update, the Tesla Model 3 now also falls into this illustrious category, with the Long Range model now capable of up to 421 miles on a charge.
What really sets the Tesla apart from its competitors, however, is its full access to the brand’s extensive Supercharger network. While this is slowly being opened up to the general public at a higher cost, Superchargers are amongst the fastest public chargers out there and are incredibly easy to use. All your payment data is stored in your Tesla’s infotainment system, meaning all you need to do is pull up, plug-in and charge away.
Tesla Model 3 range
No matter which version of the Tesla Model 3 you choose, all offer over 300 miles of range on the combined WLTP tests. The base Model 3, with its 344-mile estimate, should have legs long enough for most buyers – especially given the average daily mileage is supposedly around 20 miles. In fact, during our test drive, the Model 3’s central display indicated an average efficiency of 4.1 miles per kilowatt-hour, resulting in a real-world range of 240ish miles – quite a bit less than Tesla’s claimed figure, but strong nonetheless.
Tesla says the Model 3 Long Range can do up to 421 miles on a single charge, provided you stick with the standard-fit 18-inch alloys, and we’ve got reason to believe that. During our winter tests of the pre-facelift car, we easily managed to average efficiency of around 4.4 miles per kWh; taking into account the old Long Range’s battery size of around 70kWh, this results in a range of 308 miles. With a light right foot and warmer weather, we suspect drivers should easily be able to do 350 miles of driving before needing to plug-in.
The now-discontinued top-of-the-range Tesla Model 3 Performance models had a reduced maximum range of 340 miles; of course, it goes without saying that making use of the insane power and acceleration that’s on offer will quickly have a negative impact on your maximum range.
Plug the Model 3 into a V3 or V4 Tesla Supercharger you can charge from 10-80% capacity in under 30 minutes. Of course, because the Model 3 features a CCS charging port you can use any other public rapid and ultra-rapid chargers, too.
If you're topping up the Model 3 from a standard 7.4kW home wallbox it'll take a little over nine hours to fully charge the base model or 12 hours for a Long Range or Performance version. As with most electric cars, a three-pin cable is supplied more as an emergency backup than as a routine charging solution. It’ll take a couple of days to fully charge the Model 3 from a domestic socket – giving you around 10 miles of range per hour. Charging in this way is clearly not a long-term solution, but can still be useful in a pinch.
In This Review
- 1VerdictA recent facelift has cemented the Model 3’s position at the top of its class, with the baby Tesla offering everything you could possibly need from an electric family car
- 2Range, battery & charging - currently readingNot only does the Tesla Model 3 offer superb range, but full access to the amazing Supercharger network
- 3Running costs & insuranceThe Model 3 is generally affordable to buy and run, but it’ll cost an arm and a leg to insure
- 4Performance, motor & driveAside from point and squirt performance, the Model 3 offers little in the way of driver engagement
- 5Interior, dashboard & comfortThe Model 3’s interior does feel pretty plush in places and boasts the latest tech, but ultimately feels a little ‘form over function’
- 6Boot space, seating & practicalityThough spacious for a small saloon, we wish the Model 3 had a hatchback bootlid – the Model Y is even roomier
- 7Reliability & safety ratingIt may be one of the safest EVs you can buy, but Tesla’s reliability record leaves a lot to be desired