Tesla Model 3 Performance Gets Official EPA Range Estimate, and It's Better Than Expected

Tesla Model 3 Performance 7 photos
Photo: Tesla
Tesla Model 3 PerformanceTesla Model 3 PerformanceTesla Model 3 PerformanceTesla Model 3 PerformanceTesla Model 3 PerformanceTesla Model 3 Performance
Tesla delayed the Model 3 Performance deliveries because the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) needed more time to issue the final approval. It turned out the move was beneficial for Tesla because the final EPA range estimate was higher than Tesla's initial estimate.
Tesla revealed the refreshed Model 3 Performance on April 23, just in time for the first-quarter earnings call. The reception from the Tesla community was enthusiastic, especially as the Performance model turned out even cheaper than the Model 3 Long Range AWD. That's because the sportiest Model 3 is the only variant that qualifies for the $7,500 federal tax credit.

However, there's a caveat: adding even the cheapest extra option to the Model 3 Performance configuration will make it ineligible for the tax credit. This includes any paint color except Stealth Grey. That's because Tesla hiked the price by $1,000 just before the deliveries started, to $54,990. That's slightly under the $55,000 IRA threshold for electric sedans. Unless Tesla lowers the price back, we should see a lot of grey Tesla Model 3 Performance. Thankfully, Tesla made the white interior a free option.

Deliveries were scheduled to debut in mid-May, and the vehicles arrived at delivery centers in time to meet this deadline. However, on May 16, Tesla notified buyers to reschedule the delivery appointments because the carmaker needed more time to get EPA approval. It turned out it was just bureaucracy because deliveries started two days later. Tesla has now published the official EPA range estimates, and the new owners were pleasantly surprised by the results.

Instead of the initial range estimate of 296 miles (476 km), the Tesla Model 3 Performance was certified for 303 miles (488 km). Seven miles is not a huge leap, but it's just enough to cross the "psychological threshold," which for most people is 300 miles. Despite being more powerful, the Model 3 Performance is only 38 miles (61 km) shy of the Long Range variant. This speaks volumes about its efficiency, owing to a new generation of the Performance rear motor.

The new range certification puts the refreshed Model 3 Performance at an apparent disadvantage compared to the old model. According to the EPA's latest data, the legacy Model 3 Performance had 315 miles (507 km) of range. However, it should be noted that the new model was tested according to the updated EPA rules, which saw the EPA ratings degraded for all electric vehicles.

The agency changed the EV testing procedure for the 2024 model year. In January, this led to the Tesla Model Y losing 20 miles of range. If tested according to last year's rules, the refreshed Model 3 Performance could've been certified for 323 miles (520 km) of range, give or take. This is another effect of the impressive efficiency Tesla pulled off with the revamped Model 3 Performance.

The 2024 Tesla Model 3 Performance EPA information is still not listed on the agency's website but will probably appear soon. The new range estimate appears on Tesla's website on the Model 3 Performance landing page and in the design studio.
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About the author: Cristian Agatie
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After his childhood dream of becoming a "tractor operator" didn't pan out, Cristian turned to journalism, first in print and later moving to online media. His top interests are electric vehicles and new energy solutions.
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