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2021 Tesla Model 3

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Model 3
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Used Car Price Range
$18,991 - $33,800
$18,991 $33,800
Select a Trim
Select a Trim
2021 Standard Range Plus 4dr Rear-Wheel Drive Sedan
most popular
Price:   -  From $44,990
2021 Long Range 4dr All-Wheel Drive Sedan Price:   -  From $50,990
2021 Performance 4dr All-Wheel Drive Sedan Price:   -  From $58,990
Expert Rating
3.8 (Good)

Our expert ratings are based on seven comprehensive criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

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What's New

The 2021 Model 3 has no major changes. Tesla, which operates more like its Silicon Valley brethren than a traditional automaker, eschews model years for rolling changes. As developments arise, they go into production. Over-the-air software update beams these updates direct to your car, so you don't need to upgrade to the latest model for the latest features.

The latest changes to the Model 3, however, are more than software: the 2021s get larger, slightly more efficient batteries that result in another 13 to 31 miles of range depending on trim. All versions also feature some cosmetic enhancement inside and out. Rounding out the changes is a redesigned center console that can now hold and wirelessly charge two devices.

Choosing Your Tesla Model 3

The 2021 Model 3 is divvied up into three trims, each differing by range and performance. The cheapest starts under $40,000; the priciest reaches just over $56,000.

Although the Model 3 no longer qualifies for a $7,500 federal tax credit like other EVs, it remains eligible for incentives like the $1,500 Clean Fuel Reward and $2,000 Clean Vehicle Rebate in California.

Engine Choices

The Model 3 features two all-electric powertrains. The entry-level model uses a single electric motor that drives just the rear wheels, while the upper two trims mount an additional motor on the front axle for a twin-motor, all-wheel-drive design. All versions use a single-speed transmission.

ModelEngine TypeRange0-60 mph TimeMPGe (city/highway)
Standard Range PlusElectric motor263 miles5.3 seconds118/107
Long RangeDual electric motors353 miles4.4 seconds141/127
PerformanceDual electric motors315 miles3.1 seconds148/132

Charging at home via a 120-volt plug is possible, but we wouldn't recommend it: it only provides about 3 miles of range per hour of charging. Tesla's 240-volt wall chargers offer up to 44 miles of range per hour, which is good enough for most commuters to recharge the battery sufficiently overnight.

The public Tesla supercharging stations remain the best bet for juicing up, as they can recharge up to 172 miles in 15 minutes. Currently, 20,000 such supercharging stations are scattered throughout the country, primarily along major highways.

Passenger and Cargo Capacity

The Model 3 is a five-seater with 35 inches of second-row legroom. The cargo area is spread across a small front trunk as well as a traditional rear trunk. Between the two, buyers will find 15 cubic feet of cargo area.

Tesla Model 3

Safety Features

Every Model 3 comes with Tesla's comprehensive array of safety gear, including automatic emergency braking, forward collision warning, blind-spot monitors, adaptive cruise control, and active lane control.

If that isn't enough, Tesla also offers a $10,000 upgrade promising full self-driving capability. That five-figure price buys Tesla's Autopilot feature, which allows for semi-autonomous highway navigation, as well as automatic parking and automatic lane changes. A summon feature is included as well that lets the car autonomously navigate to you in a parking lot.

The Model 3 passed with flying colors all crash tests levied against it by the NHTSA and IIHS.


The heart of the Model 3 isn't its electric motors; it's the massive 15-inch touchscreen residing in the dashboard. Within that screen lies nearly all controls the driver might need to access.

It comes standard with navigation, wifi hotspot compatibility, and a host of other functions, but oddly enough lacks Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability. You also can't get AM radio or SiriusXM radio.

Tesla Model 3

Standard Range Plus - From $39,190

The cheapest Model 3 is rear-wheel drive and has just one electric motor; it's rated by Tesla for 263 miles or range. It rolls on 18-inch wheels, wears body-color trim, and features a massive panoramic glass roof.

Interior amenities include a 14-speaker audio system, a Sentry Mode alarm system, and remote access to the car via a mobile app. 12-way power heated seats, eco-friendly upholstery, and real wood trim decorate the cabin.

Aside from the $10,000 Self Driving option, buyers can upgrade to 19-inch wheels for $1,500. An all-black interior is standard, but a contrasting black and white color scheme is available for $1,000.

Long Range - From $48,190

Moving into the Long Range buys more battery, another electric motor, all-wheel drive, and nearly 100 additional miles of range. Heated rear seats and a year of complimentary online services are standard, but otherwise the list of amenities matches that of the base car.

Performance - From $56,190

The hallmark of the performance trim is a blistering 3.1-second 0-60 mph time, which is in line with bonafide supercars.

Accompanying the enhanced acceleration are upgraded brakes, 20-inch wheels, a lowered suspension, and a carbon fiber spoiler.

Compare Model 3 Trims Side-By-Side

CarsDirect Tip

We're salivating for the Performance model, but the truth is that the Long Range trim is likely the best bet for most buyers. Its excellent 353-mile range not only quells charging anxiety - it also puts this flavor of Model 3 ahead of every other EV currently on the market. In our eyes, that's well worth the $47,000 asking price.

author image
Automotive Editor
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Expert Review

  • Stellar range
  • As efficient as it gets
  • Fast and fun
  • Latest and greatest tech
  • Sub-par materials and build quality
  • Screen-only interface
  • RWD-only base model
Expert Rating
3.8 (Good)

Our expert ratings are based on seven comprehensive criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

author image
Automotive Editor

A top performer. Electric cars are quickly gaining mainstream acceptance, but the 2021 Tesla Model 3 remains at the forefront. We wouldn’t quite call it affordable, but it’s the closest you’ll get to an everyman’s Tesla.

The Model 3’s greatest virtues are its range and efficiency. 2021 brings a range upgrade to the whole lineup, which means that even the base model can now cruise for 263 miles on a charge. Bump up to the Long Range version, and you’ll unlock a class-leading 353 miles. Tesla’s network of charging stations is another major perk, although the competing electric infrastructure is starting to catch up.

The Model 3 isn’t just about efficiency — it’s fast, too. Power ranges from 283 to 450 horsepower, but boatloads of instantaneous electric torque make the 3 quick off the line. Steering is precise, and the suspension strikes an admirable balance between comfort and responsiveness.

Attractive...from afar. The 2021 Model 3 sees a few minor styling updates, most of which come from dialing down the chrome on the exterior. It isn’t quite as attractive as the Model S, but the Model 3’s smooth roofline and the flush door handles are appealing enough. The Model 3 lacks any imitation of a grille, and its blank nose will ensure that the world knows you’re driving an electric.

If possible, the interior looks even more modern. All the conventional dials and switchgear — including the driver’s gauge cluster — are absent, replaced by a single 15-inch touchscreen. It’s either minimalist or monotonous, depending on your preferences.

Up close in the cabin, the Tesla isn’t as modern or as premium as the price tag would suggest. Fabrics and panels feel cheap, and it’s clear where Tesla had to cut corners to make the Model 3 more affordable than the Model S. Even without the din of a combustion engine, road noise is intrusive.

Futuristic to a fault. The Model 3 benefits from Tesla’s impressive array of safety tech, including standard features like adaptive cruise control. The most sophisticated autonomous features still cost extra (a lot extra, in some cases), but they add nifty perks like the ability to summon your Tesla in a parking lot.

The central touchscreen is more polarizing. It’s bright and responsive, and the menu system is intuitive enough. Voice commands work fairly well, too.

But while the technology is impressive, it sometimes feels like a bit much. Checking the screen for your speed takes getting used to, and using it for functions like mirror adjustment seems silly at times. The system isn’t compatible with either Android Auto or Apple CarPlay, either.

Tesla Model 3

A car for all seasons. The Model 3 lineup covers a variety of bases, depending on your climate and range needs. The Long Range and Performance models both come with all-wheel drive and do an admirable job living up to their badges. With a good set of tires, Tesla’s all-wheel-drive system performs well in inclement weather.

If you can live without all-wheel drive, though, the base Standard Range Plus is the best value. Standard features are impressive, including navigation and heated seats. With the newly extended range, it’s more versatile than ever.

The Standard Range Plus remains the most efficient electric car on the market, earning an astonishing rating of 141 MPGe from the EPA. Plus, it gets one of Tesla’s best features: a 4-year/50,000-mile warranty, which extends double for the batteries.

Final thoughts. The Tesla Model 3 still feels like the car of the future. It looks the part, it’s overflowing with tech, and its range continues to improve. The biggest downside is the build quality, which remains poorer than we’d like for the price. All the same, the Model 3 is a remarkably capable and versatile car — and the reasons not to buy an electric are dwindling.

Check prices for the 2021 Tesla Model 3 »

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Specs & Features

Overall Crash Safety Rating
Not Available
Engine - Horsepower/Torque
271 HP / 310 ft.lbs.
1-spd auto
Drive Type
Fuel Economy - City/Highway/Combined
150 / 133 / 142 Mpge
Passenger Capacity
Bumper to Bumper Warranty
48 Months / 50,000 Miles
Mechanical Specs
Engine - Horsepower/Torque
271 HP / 310 ft.lbs.
Drive Type
150 / 133 / 142 Mpge
4-wheel Disc
Front Suspension
Double Wishbone
Rear Suspension
Independent Multi-link
Spare Tire And Wheel
Fuel Tank
Recommended Fuel Type
Average Cost To Fill Tank
Dimensions & Capabilities
Maximum Cargo Volume
Passenger Volume
97 Cu.ft.
Exterior Length
184.8 "
Exterior Width
72.8 "
Exterior Height
56.8 "
Front Headroom
40.3 "
Rear Headroom
37.7 "
Front Legroom
42.7 "
Rear Legroom
35.2 "
Front Shoulder Room
56.3 "
Rear Shoulder Room
54.0 "
Front Hip Room
Rear Hip Room
Curb Weight
3,648 Lbs.
Wheel Base
113 "
Turning Radius
19.4 '
Exterior Features
Door Count
4 Doors
18.0 " Gray Aluminum / 19.0 " Silver Aluminum
Clearcoat Monotone / Metallic Monotone
Exterior Mirrors
Dual Power Remote W/tilt Down Heated
Grille Moldings
Rear Spoiler
Interior Features
Passenger Capacity
Seat Trim
Front Seat Type
Heated Front Seats
Driver And Front Passenger Heated-cushion, Heated-seatback
Front Driver Seat Direction Controls
(8-way Power)
Front Passenger Seat Direction Controls
(8-way Power)
Front Armrests
(8-way Power)
Rear Armrests
Rear Seats
60-40 Bench
Radio & Infotainment
Fm/hd, Fm/hd, Seek-scan
Radio Steering Wheel Controls
Apple Car Play
Android Auto
Bluetooth w/ Hands-Free Connectivity
Convenience Features
Steering Wheel Type
Power Telescopic Tilt
Climate Control
Automatic Air Conditioning
Cruise Control
With Steering Wheel Controls
Sun Roof
Rearview Mirror
Auto-dimming Day-night
One Touch Open Window
Front And Rear
Tinted Windows
Vanity Mirrors
Dual Illuminated
Remote Keyless Entry
Smart Device-as-key
Power Outlets
Safety Features
Overall Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Overall Front Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Overall Side Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Rollover Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Front Impact Airbags
Driver And Passenger
Driver Side Impact Airbags
Seat Mounted
Knee Airbag
Driver And Passenger
Passenger Side Impact Airbag
Seat Mounted
Rear Side Airbag
Seatbelt Pretensioners
Front And Rear
Anti-Lock Brakes
4-wheel Anti-lock Brakes (abs)
Forward Collision Warning
Forward Collision Mitigation
Blind Spot Sensor
Blind Spot
Lane Departure Warning
Lane Departure
Autonomous Cruise Control
Autosteer W/auto Lane Change Hands-on (with Lane Change) Steering Assist
Pedestrian Detection
Front Pedestrian Detection Prevention
Driver Attention Alert
Driver Attention
Daytime Running Lights
Auto High Beams
Auto High-beam
Adaptive Headlights
Parking Sensors
Front And Rear / Autopark Automated
Security Systems
Security System
Panic Alarm
Ignition Disable
Bumper To Bumper Months Miles
48 Months / 50,000 Miles
Major Components Months
96 Months / 100,000 Miles
Included Maintenance Months
Roadside Assistance Months
48 Months / 50,000 Miles
Corrosion Perforation
144 Months / Unlimited Miles
Accessories Months

Used 2021 Tesla Model 3 for Sale

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