Since its massive worldwide debut, which saw hundreds of thousands of people throw down $1,000 reservations, the Tesla Model 3 has been compared to the BMW 3 Series. Questions of whether or not the Tesla Model 3 could compare to cars like the 3 Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class and Audi A4 have been swirling around it since test drives started happening almost a year ago. So can it really beat the BMW 3 Series, the car that started the segment? Autocar finds out in this new video.
Autocar’s Matt Prior is not a particular Tesla fanboy and reviews it as objectively as possible. He drives the Model 3 on some of California’s twistier roads to see how it would fare on roads about similar as he could find to a British B-road. And he finds that the Model 3 is a very good car that he enjoyed driving. But is it as good as the 3 Series and C-Class? He’s not so sure. But one thing I think we’ve all learned is this — it doesn’t matter. Tesla fans are going to say that the Model 3 blows the doors off of a 3 Series no matter what. And Tesla haters are going to argue the contrary, regardless of how good the Tesla is.
But for those that have no brand affiliation, who look at the Model 3 and 3 Series alike with an open mind, it’s really going to come down to what you want in a car. If you want comfortable, smooth and quiet transportation with the latest tech possible, the Tesla Model 3 is probably your best bet. If you want something with proper driving dynamics and something that’s a little bit more fun, than the BMW 3 Series is probably better for you.
However, if Tesla wants the Model 3 to beat the best-selling car in the segment, it’s going to have to offer an experience that’s far superior and we’re not so sure it is. Prior says that it drives fine and is decently fun to drive. That’s not exactly glowing praise but it isn’t harsh criticism either. The Model 3 seems to be an interesting alternative to the 3 Series, something you buy if you’re interested in electric mobility and want something that offers a new perspective on the segment. But it doesn’t something that’s going to pull a lot of 3 Series/C-Class/A4 buyers over.
So, can it beat the 3 Series? In terms of the way it drives and performs, probably not. But if you want something that’s different, if you want to try an electric car that offers a similar experience to the cars in that segment, than the Model 3 could be a very good car for you. That is, if you can actually get one.