Should I get the Tesla Model S 75D or the Model 3 Performance?

Upon first glance at the stats of the performance Model 3, it seems like it handily beats the Model S 75D in terms of speed and range, and they cost almost exactly the same (~$75,000 without AutoPilot).


Other answers are very good. Not too much to add, so I will distill it for simplicity.

Model S 75D

You can get it now
Twice the cubic volume for luggage (30 cuft vs. 15 cuft, roughly)
Optional opening pano roof
Optional air suspension - smoother ride
Arguably plusher interior
2 screens and slightly more ergonomic hand controls
It's the flagship sedan

Model 3 PLRD (or P70D, technically)

The wait will be 3 months if you are a the top of the list, otherwise ???
More of a driver's car
Firmer suspension - more connected to the road
Quicker off the line and to 60 (likely will beat specs)
Newer battery and motor technology
Longer range on a full charge
Easier to park and maneuver in urban settings.
Less ostentatious

It comes down to, do you want a bigger, more prestegious body or do you want more performance and handling.

Same choice of BMW 7 series basic vs. BMW M3 loaded.


I drive a Model S 75 (not D) and have a Model 3 on order.

The fact that the question says "performance" somewhat disqualifies me from answering since I am not a performance driver. The 4.5 second 0–60 mph acceleration of my S 75 is more performance that I've ever needed. The Model 3 Performance model is supposed to do that in 3.5.

So let me throw out a few random things to think about:

  • If you buy the Model S, you will get free supercharging for as long as you own the car (requires buying with a customer referral which any owner will gleefully give you).
  • The Model S is a big car. Depending on your garage, it might be a little too big. Think of narrow streets and tight parking places.
  • The Model S has roughly twice as much cargo space as the Model 3. The Model S is a hatchback that allows taller items to be carried.
  • The long-range version of the Model 3 has a range of 310 miles while the Model S 75D is about 249. More range is always better.
  • You can get a Model S now, but you will have a long wait for the Model 3 Performance, maybe a year or more.

Questions that come to mind:

  • How much of a performance nut are you?
  • How big is your budget, really?
  • How big a car do you really want?
  • Is seating 5 something you're going to do often?

I've been a "enthusiast", and had commuter cars. I ruled out the S as too freaking big and expensive, period, and waited for the 3. In April, I had to decide whether to get the "commuter" 3 (last week) or wait until July or August for a D or P, I decided I didn't want to afford the 10–20k extra.

The 3 seats 4 quite comfortably. If you don't really need 5, I can't think of a reason to get an S.


For me, I think the decision would pivot on size and handling. The Model S is a much larger car, which can cut both ways-might need the space or might be more can than you need or can fit in your garage. The other is handling. While the S has remarkable handling, its still a 6000 lbs car and is still bound by the laws of physics. I would imagine near-S levels of performance in a much smaller and lighter car would be a blast to drive.


Model S with referral gets you free supercharging while you own the car

More storage in the model S

Model S has the bugs worked out (presently Tesla has acknowledged braking improvements coming on model 3)

Model S better finishing touches

Model S offers panoramic sunroof option

Model 3 quicker performance

Model 3 longer range (310 vs 259)

Model 3 uses newer battery technology


What are some mind-blowing facts about genius and geniuses?

When Mr. John Nash(the character played by Russell Crowe in A Beautiful Mind) applied to Princeton University one of his letter of recommendations read like this, it is one of the shortest and yet possibly one of the greatest letter of recommendations that could ever be written

Why are so many people against Tesla or electric vehicles?

I don't know anyone who's against them as such.But Tesla in particular is expensive, they generally have a limited range, access to charge stations is equally limited, charging takes longer than refueling, what'll happen to them on the used market is anybody's guess.