TESLA either hasn’t heard of camouflage or doesn’t mind the publicity that comes with leaked images, though the apparent ease with which one Reddit user was able to snap pics of the Model 3’s previously unseen interior makes us suspect the latter.
The 29 images, posted by Reddit user inamachineshop, show three of the new mid-sized, ‘affordable’ EVs that appear close to production-ready, judging by panel gaps tighter than earlier prototypes.
Like the Tesla Model S, the smaller car’s dashboard is void of buttons. However, a large 17-inch touchscreen in the centre is landscape-orientated rather that portrait. Also, there is no gauge cluster or a visible head-up-display meaning driver has to look sideways at the screen to read their speed, though it’s not known if this will be the case with the production models.
Another feature unique to the Model 3 is the lack of a separate stalk to control the autopilot function, which appears to be controlled by a stylish gear lever on the steering wheel.
Other visible interior features include leather seats, stitched leather armrests, wood-trimmed dash and metal brightwork that give a premium feel befitting of a car that’s expected to retail for around $65,000 in Australia – about half the price of the entry-level Model S 75.
Images posted by another Reddit user show the rear seats will fold to provide more cargo space to the relatively small 400-litre boot, which is hampered by the mass of lithium-ion batteries along the floor.
With no engine there is also luggage space available up front, though previous pics have shown this won’t hold much more than a small suitcase.
According to Tesla, its most affordable model yet will have a 346km range, is “designed to attain the highest safety ratings in every category” and will accelerate from 0-100km/h in less than 6.0 seconds.
The Tesla Model 3 is expected to start production at the company’s in Fremont, California within weeks.
Tesla is accepting a reserve deposits of $1500 for Australian Model 3 orders, which people have gladly paid despite the prospect of minimum 12-month wait.