Tesla Model 3 reliability & safety
The Tesla Model 3 sets the benchmark for active safety features, earning the top five-star NCAP safety rating
|Euro NCAP||Adult protection||Child protection||Safety assist|
|5 stars (2019)||96%||86%||94%|
It’s hard to comment on reliability yet as the Tesla Model 3 is so new. Electric motors have far fewer components that can go wrong than a petrol or diesel car, although glitches have been reported with the cruise control. Safety is hard to fault given that Tesla leads the industry for standard semi-autonomous driver aids.
Tesla Model 3 reliability & problems
Some American owners have reported worrying issues with the car accelerating independently when cruise control is active, but otherwise there are no other significant recurring issues with the Model 3.
The Tesla Model 3 comes with the maximum five-star safety rating from Euro NCAP. The company leads the industry for semi-autonomous driving systems, so it's no surprise that its score of 94% in the Safety Assist category is an all-time record.
All versions come as standard with lane keep assist, parking aids, traffic sign recognition and a full suite of airbags, but the semi-autonomous mode that will see the car change lane for you and even leave a slip road off a motorway (and more) is a £5,800 option.
It's worth noting that Autopilot didn't contribute to the Model 3's Euro NCAP rating, as it's classified as a "comfort driving feature" for now. Euro NCAP will start assessing it in 2020, when it rolls out a new programme of safety tests.
An update was rolled out in 2019 that added semi-autonomous city driving, including responding automatically to road traffic signs. All of these systems are semi-autonomous, not fully autonomous, meaning that the driver must still be actively paying attention and in control. Sadly, there’s no spare wheel – not even a space-saver.
In This Review
- 1VerdictThe Tesla Model 3 is one of the best electric cars on sale, delivering great real-world range, tidy dynamics and a tech-filled interior
- 2Range, battery & chargingAs the name suggests, the Tesla Model 3 Long Range boasts one of the longest ranges of any electric car on sale
- 3Running costsThe Tesla Model 3 looks expensive, but it’s cheaper to own than most alternatives after factoring in the performance and fuel costs
- 4Electric motor, drive & performanceThe Tesla Model 3 is anything but slow, even in entry-level spec, although it’s no sports car in corners
- 5Interior & comfortThe Tesla Model 3 has the most minimalist interior going, complete with class-leading touchscreen technology
- 6Practicality & boot spaceThe Tesla Model 3 is not the roomiest of cars, particularly for rear passengers, but it is adequate for small families
- 7Reliability & safety - currently readingThe Tesla Model 3 sets the benchmark for active safety features, earning the top five-star NCAP safety rating