Tesla Model 3 Performance first drive: The best Tesla yet?

I drove the regular, 271-hp, rear-wheel-drive Tesla Model 3 a few months ago and liked it. It was pretty quick and seemed to handle well enough. But I didn’t walk away from it thinking, “Gosh, if only it had more performance.” Well, Tesla has given the Model 3 more performance anyway -- quite a bit more, dubbing the new trim level, creatively, the “Model 3 Performance.” I would have named it Squealing Weasel, or Tiger of Torque, or Da Angry Badger or something. But Tesla is a Silicon Valley tech company, so I guess “Performance” is acceptable for a trim level name.

The new model promises a top speed of 155 mph and a 0-60 time of just 3.5 seconds, both on the same 75-kWh battery that gives the same 310-mile EPA range as the other Model 3s. So it’s better before it even gets off the spec sheet. Compare those numbers to the non-Performance Dual Motor All-Wheel Drive Model 3, which tops out at “only” 145 mph and takes a full 4.5 seconds to get to 60; and the Rear-Wheel Drive Model 3 I drove seven months ago that hits a paltry 140 mph tops and gets to 60 in a leisurely 5.1 seconds. Read more...

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12 Oct 2018