2018 Tesla Model 3 vs. 2021 Tesla Model 3 (Video Comparison)


Published on November 17th, 2020 |
by Johnna Crider

November 17th, 2020 by  

YouTuber David Narayan recently compared the major differences between the 2021 Tesla Model 3 and the 2018 Tesla Model 3. He and his friend Lucas, whose 2018 Model 3 was featured in the video, covered many different aspects of each vehicle in the exterior and interior. Comparison videos like this one are a great way to show how Tesla is progressing as it continues to make and sell its vehicles.

Aero Wheels and Chrome Delete

Narayan started with the exterior of the cars and with the aero wheels.”They look a little glossier on the 2018 than they do on the 2021. There’s a slight difference in the hole where you put the air in,” Narayan said, adding that for 2021 it’s a small circular hole while 2018 has almost a slot-like appearance.

The exterior chrome delete on the 2021 Model 3 isn’t present on the 2018 version, and Narayan pointed out that his friend, Lucas, is considering having it done on his car. “I like the chrome delete. There are some people who don’t really care for it. It is a satin finish, so just you guys know, that satin finish kind of leave some smudges there. I know the chrome does, too, but I feel like it’s easier to get away with the fingerprints with the chrome, but with the satin, you can kind of see it a little bit more,” Narayan said.

Headlights & Sound

Another thing he noticed was that the headlights look exactly the same. Narayan also compared the sound as the vehicles traveled down the highway and pointed out that they are similar. “To be honest with you, they’re very, very similar. I feel like the sound is very similar even though we have the double-pane. It’s because we also have that heat pump. On the exterior of the car, I told him to turn on the climate controls, and I couldn’t hear anything. As soon as I turned my climate controls on, you can really hear a fan. I think it’s the heat pump making a lot of noise, so that’s probably the biggest difference there.”  Overall, though, he pointed out that he didn’t think there was that big of a difference in terms of sound. “I’m not sure if the double-pane makes a huge difference anymore.”

Steering Wheel

In Lucas’ 2018 Model 3, the steering wheel is made of leather. In 2019, Tesla started using is vegan leather, so Narayan’s Tesla has a faux leather steering wheel. It also has metallic knobs instead of more-plastic knobs. “You can see maybe a little bit has rubbed off (of his). You can see it’s gotten a little bit smoother. For me, obviously, there are more of those metallic knobs on the steering wheel. They’ll last longer — at least that’s the intent.” Narayan also noted that his Model 3’s steering wheel felt different and thicker than Lucas’s 2018 Model 3, implying that it might have heating tech included.

Center Console

Narayan shared that Lucas has been partially wrapping his center console to cover up that glossy piano black material on the center console that Tesla just recently phased out. “I touched it once to open it. My fingerprint immediately shows up, so it is a magnet for dust and fingerprints.” Narayan said he didn’t have that issue in his own car. “You have some dust, you wipe it off, it’s done. Zero fingerprints. I’m loving the new console. I think that’s one of the biggest deals.” Narayan doesn’t think there’s any major difference within the space and the size except for the ports.

“So you’ll notice here that we have two USB-C ports in the front part of the console. These USB-C ports, obviously, that’s the future. He has USB-A and the same space underneath, really.” Lucas also has a third-party external wireless charger that’s he’s been using for his Galaxy Note, whereas the 2021 Model 3 comes with a wireless charger included.

Frunk & Front Vent

Narayan noticed that in his front trunk (frunk) the grocery handles that were in the 2018 model are not there, but the space seems to be larger than in the 2018 model. The top vent in his car, Narayan noticed, is a bit smaller than in the 2018 one. You can watch Narayan’s full video comparison of the two vehicles here


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About the Author

is a Baton Rouge artist, gem, and mineral collector, member of the International Gem Society, and a Tesla shareholder who believes in Elon Musk and Tesla. Elon Musk advised her in 2018 to “Believe in Good.”

Tesla is one of many good things to believe in. You can find Johnna on Twitter

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