24th March 2019 by Kyle Field
The Tesla Model Y was launched last week at an event in Hawthorne, California, at the Tesla Design Studio. The event was perhaps one of the most anticipated events of the year as it is expected that the electric compact commercial vehicle will sell more than all three of Tesla's current vehicles overall and become one of the world's best-selling passenger cars.
] CleanTechnica was present at the event and was able to get into the Model Y for one of the passengers in the vehicle. Since two of us were three Tesla Model 3 owners, we also had a good natural ability to compare the Y to the 3.
The first thing I noticed when getting into the rear of the vehicle was that the seats were slightly higher than the model 3. The construction of the fabric base and the back felt the same as in the 3, and that makes sense, since the model Y uses the same seats as the model 3. The lower stroke of the model 3, which also extends into the model Y, feels even deeper and opens the view to the outside even more than in the 3.
A glance at the third row of seats shows tiny jump seats that were very similar to those of the aircraft crew you see in planes. Two tiny seats seemed to sit on the floor of the back and had little to no legroom. This is probably something that Tesla still fine tunes, because it's hard to imagine someone sitting back there for a while and feeling well. I do not expect them to feel comfortable with my 6 "2" frame, but I expect my 7- and 9-year-old sons to sit comfortably in the third row.
Looking Except for the front seats, the 15-inch landscape touchscreen that debuted in the Model 3 is a familiar face, as is much of the frontal landscape. A center console sweeps forward to the low dashboard, the steering wheel has the same known buttons. Expect Tesla to introduce the standard interior options that were recently introduced in Model 3 to the Model Y when the first standard-range vehicles are delivered to customers.
All the Glass
Looking up Glass panel that covered the cabin kept calling me. That surprised me because it was night and there was not much to see, but it did the same. The Model Y differs from the Model 3 with its roof construction, opting instead for a single pane of glass from the back of the windshield to the top of the tailgate.
The change leads to a wide-open feeling in the cab that you simply can not get into the 3. The model 3 has a single pane of glass over the driver and the front passenger, with another large disc that bounces right in front of the rear passengers way back to the rear of the car. I prefer the feel of the Y and tailgate design, as it's so much more functional.
No one outside the inner circle of Tesla could drive the Model Y (this was also the case when the Model 3 was first shown on March 31, 2016), but that for ours Car-competent Tesla crew member took us on the standard route from the Design Studio on the road to make a quick round. The acceleration on the way was impressive, but not ridiculous . The driver confirmed that we were not in a Performance Spec Model Y. Nevertheless, he maintained a sound clip that threw the driver and four passengers back into our seats. Good luck finding a faster crossover.
After making a quick lap, we sprinted back with a bit of dodge and snaked along the road to demonstrate the car's sprightly handling. It was not a tight slalom at full load, but the car performed well despite being fully loaded with minimal roll. Overall, the model Y felt much the same as the model 3, but with the added height, which has essentially no effect on the driving characteristics of the car. This is an impressive performance for a car that offers 66 cubic feet of storage space!