When starting my own business I knew that I was going to invest a lot of time and effort in building this up, growing a mission and working towards a future vision. Therefore, I also wanted to include one of my dreams that was perfectly aligned with that innovative and digitized feeling that I want to express to my partners, customers and potential co-workers: an electric vehicle!
Why a Tesla Model 3?
Funny enough, it feels like everyone always has an opinion that he or she needs to express when talking about Tesla. For me personally, I just love the technology in a car. I'm not a mechanic engineer, I am a software engineer and I guess that's why I don't give a damn about the "missing" noise of a "real" engine. Of course, I will turn my head for the sound of a passing sports car but I can also just enjoy the silence, elegance and the simplicity of my Tesla Model 3 Performance.
I've considered and tested also other brands like Audi and Polestar but in the end I believe that Tesla is leading the EV market with better autonomy and technology that dares to go off the usual stuff that traditional car manufacturers have been copying for a long time.
In this blog I want to share my experience with some of the features that might help you to make up your mind if you're also looking for an Electric Vehicle (EV).
To be honest, sometimes you just have to follow your gut feeling and do things just for fun. I took the Performance version of the Tesla Model 3 (TM3) - and it's absolutely not necessary. You get a WLTP range of 567 km compared to the 614 km of a Long Range version and 448 km of a Standard Range version. Furthermore, you will receive the 20" Überturbine wheels, red Performance brakes, carbon fiber spoiler, aluminium alloy pedals and lowered suspension. Personally, I just love the wheels and couldn't resist going for this version. The range is still sufficient with a realistic range of 500 km on a 100% charge. Of course, your real autonomy will depend on weather conditions, driving style and trip. For long journeys on a highway, without regenerative braking, it will be more like a range of 400 km but that's still fine for me considering the amount of chargers. Apart from that, you have a car with incredible driving experience. I put him in Comfort mode for daily use but also like to put the horses to good use occasionally. With 3.3 s to 100 km there isn't much competition on the road I can tell you. I believe the TM3P is the perfect combination of comfort and sport. Finally, I want to add just one thing about driving experience; regenerative braking. This technology gains energy from braking and makes your car stop automatically when you lift your foot from the "gas" pedal. It's a bit tricky to get used to in the beginning and you can configure it not to do this - but once you get the hang of it then driving becomes even more fun because you will only need one pedal 99% of the time.
Full Self-Driving Capability
A Tesla without an Autopilot wouldn't be a Tesla, right? What I didn't know is that Autopilot actually comes standard on a Tesla and is more of a different name for advanced cruise-control and lane-keep assist combined. However, if you go one step up then you can take the Enhanced Autopilot package including automatic parking, Auto Lange Change, summoning your car and navigating with autopilot on highways - yes, it really takes turns for you! The full package is named the Full Self-Driving capability (FSD) and adds to the Enhanced Autopilot package traffic light & stop sign recognition, plus navigation with autopilot within cities (not yet available in Belgium). Looking at my usage, I believe that Enhanced Autopilot would have been enough. However, Mister Green Lease offers some great deal where you pay only for the features that are available already in your region. This makes the FSD still an affordable & future-proof option.
Driving my TM3 now for bit more than a month with 3.500 km on the counter, I can really say
that Autopilot is becoming extremely comfortable. I feel less exhausted and more safe since the car is actually taking over most of the time. It's a learning process and I guess some people get used to it faster than others but just enabling the FSD visualization already helps a great deal. You'll see that the system recognizes almost everything, from cars to cones to even recognizing the size of the things you are passing. I would advise you to take it step wise. First enable speed control and adjust your distance to cars in front. When you're comfortable with that, just try to enable automatic steering and you'll see that it's really good and easy to use. Finally, after configuring your navigation to a destination; just put him in automatic navigation mode and you'll see that he starts suggesting overtaking slower cars or automatically starts taking exits. Amazing technology if you ask me! Two downsides I've noticed so far, roundabouts don't work and he struggles a bit with lanes that suddenly split. Still, I'm looking forward to try out more of the features to come in order to become fully autonomous. A message for skeptical people; please remember that without innovation we could've also stuck with horse and carriage - just do it.
Pearl White Multi-Coat
My previous car was black and I'm really not such a fan of colors like red or blue for my car. Therefore I was left with the decision between grey or white and eventually I just went for the white color. Until today, I'm still super happy with that choice. It's not a regular white but a Pearl White that shines just beautiful in any light. Also, the 2021 models now come with black accents and the contrasts makes some parts even more beautiful in my opinion. If you hear people complaining about the build quality of a TM3, please ask them if it was a 2021 model because I've compared the two and the differences are unbelievable in my opinion. The latest upgrades have really made this car a worthy competitor in the market. Unfortunately, the white is not a good option for bugs. When making long trips on the highway a graveyard of dead bugs can be observed on the nose of the car. I'm considering to apply some wax but I'm not sure this will solve my problem.
All Black Interior
I've chosen for the all black interior. While white was also an option, I'm still too concerned about stains from clothing or other colorful things. Furthermore, the TM3 also provides a convenient dual phone holder with wireless charging functionality. Unfortunately, charging doesn't seem strong enough to really charge my phone. It just keeps the battery on the same level and while driving my phone often blinks that it started charging again. However, the materials used inside the car with the combination of wood and soft leather is great in my opinion. You have large storage spaces and the seats are amazingly comfortable with electronic control and automatic saving to your driving profile. One surprising fact is also that all five seats have seat heating and air conditioning doesn't have those silly fans but one elegant horizontal line that does a great job controlling temperature. Finally, you get of course the insanely large touch screen everyone is talking about. So yes, you don't have a dashboard in front of you with the instrument meters but do you really care that much about these traditional over-sized controls to indicate your speed, temperature, fuel, etc. Just let go of that feeling that you need it because you really don't. The large display is functional and puts everything you need on one display. I wouldn't like it any different anymore.
I must admit that I never expected this to be such a great feature - the large panoramic roof that extends all the way back. Although you can't open the roof, it offers so much light inside your cabin. People sitting in the back have a clear view and a UV protection is applied so you're not bothered by too much sun. Good to know - this feature is standard and doesn't cost you extra.
While driving a Tesla is great, leaving it behind on a public parking kinda felt uncomfortable in the beginning. Certainly since I didn't have a private charging station first and I had to leave it in a public space by night. When I discovered the Sentry Mode my mind was blown away. With Sentry Mode enabled, anything that comes close to your car is recorded and a message is displayed when you enter the car so that you can replay it. When there is actual impact on your car, you will even receive a notification on your phone and the car will also make a sound that warns nearby passengers. I've configured the Sentry Mode to be enabled wherever I park my car. It does take some energy from the battery but it's not considerable and most of the time my car is charging when it's parked for a longer period.
I am incredibly happy with my TM3 after one month of driving it. I feel like it strips down a car to the basics - no distractions and a fantastic driving experience - while also adding so much features and technology that really contribute to the usefulness of the car. While it's also very spacious, the next challenge will be to use it with our little pup arriving this weekend. His crate fit's perfectly on a collapsed seat and the Dog Mode will also be very convenient I guess. I wouldn't swap my Tesla with any other car so far!
Mister Green Lease
Finally, I want to thank Mister Green Lease for the great partnership. While I've been in touch with numerous traditional leasing companies, Mister Green Lease really stands out with the service they are providing. First of all because of the digitalization in their processes. Getting a no-bullshit quote was as easy as going to their website and configuring the car with a few clicks. Afterwards, a very personal approach was given by their Belgian Country Manager, Frédéric Jacoby. Together with his support team, he made the leasing of my TM3 a smooth and hassle-free process. Kudos to you and your team for this!
Pictures by Bram Goetry.
Earn 2.000 km with my Mister Green referral link: https://mstr.gr/math756850
Earn 1.500 km with my Tesla referral link: http://ts.la/mathias46441