July 21, 2024

Review: Tesla Model Y Faces Competition in the Electric SUV Market | Autoblog

Advantages: 300+ mile range available; rapid acceleration; abundant interior space; easy and expansive Supercharger network

Disadvantages: Steep learning curve for infotainment system; lack of common features; stiff ride; questionable build quality; fluctuating prices affecting resale value; ‘Full-Self Driving’ feature potential safety concerns

The Tesla Model Y offers a compelling package as a compact SUV, with its strengths and weaknesses. Purchasing a Tesla means entering a unique ecosystem, with the major benefit being the extensive Supercharger network for long-distance travel and seamless software integration. The Model Y’s interior features a large 15-inch touchscreen that controls almost all aspects of the car, with no support for Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. While the minimalist design may appeal to some, others may find it lacking in character.

Driving the Model Y, especially the Performance version, provides exhilarating acceleration and impressive handling capabilities. However, the ride quality is firm and noisy compared to its competitors, with reports of build quality issues and suspension noises. The range of the Model Y is competitive, ranging from 279-320 miles depending on the configuration, and the fast charging capabilities make road trips convenient.

We recently recognized the Model Y as the best EV in its price range, but it faces competition from other electric SUVs like the Chevrolet Equinox EV, VW ID.4, Nissan Ariya, Hyundai Ioniq 5, and Kia EV6. Potential buyers should consider all options when shopping in this growing segment.

Interior & Technology | Passenger & Cargo Space | Performance & Fuel Economy

Driving Experience | Pricing & Trim Levels | Safety Ratings & Features


What is the interior and in-car technology of the Model Y like?

The Model Y features a minimalist interior centered around a 15-inch touchscreen, with no physical buttons or knobs. The lack of an instrument panel in front of the driver may take some getting used to, as most controls and settings are accessed through the touchscreen. The seats are firm, and the interior offers ample space for both passengers and cargo. The absence of traditional controls may be challenging for some users, requiring a learning curve to navigate the various functions. The navigation system is powered by Google and lacks Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration.

How spacious is the Model Y?

The Model Y, classified as a compact SUV, offers generous interior space despite its similar size to the Model 3. The increased height of the Model Y compared to the Model 3 results in more headroom and cargo capacity. The optional third row provides additional seating, although it is best suited for children. The Model Y’s cargo space is ample, with practical under-floor storage options. The overall dimensions make it a versatile and practical choice in the compact SUV segment.

What are the range and performance specs of the Model Y?

The Model Y lineup includes Long Range RWD, Long Range AWD, and Performance models, each offering varying ranges and performance levels. The Model Y’s acceleration and handling are impressive, with the Performance model delivering exhilarating speed. Range figures vary between 279-320 miles depending on the configuration, with fast charging capabilities up to 250 kilowatts. The Model Y provides a dynamic driving experience typical of electric vehicles.

Tesla Model Y

What is the driving experience of the Model Y like?

The Model Y offers swift acceleration and smooth driving characteristics typical of electric vehicles. The weight distribution and low center of gravity contribute to its agile handling, especially in the Performance model. However, the ride quality is firmer than expected, with potential noise and comfort issues. The Model Y’s interior may develop creaks and squeaks over time, affecting overall refinement.

For more detailed Model Y reviews, you can explore:

Electric Crossover Comparison Test: Tesla Model Y vs. VW ID.4, Kia Niro, Hyundai Kona Electric

Comparing the Model Y with its electric SUV competitors in the $45,000 price range.

Tesla Model Y First Drive | One of a kind

Initial impressions of the Model Y from its first drive experience back in July 2020, highlighting its unique features and performance characteristics.

What is the pricing of the Model Y?

The Model Y’s pricing structure differs from traditional car purchases, with online ordering and potential savings displayed on the Tesla website. The base prices for the Model Y models are listed below, with additional costs for options like paint colors, wheels, and interior upgrades. The Full-Self Driving package is available for an additional fee, but caution is advised regarding its functionality.

Prices for Model Y models:

Model Y Long-Range RWD: $46,630
Model Y Long-Range AWD: $49,630
Model Y Performance: $53,130

What are the safety ratings and driver assistance features of the Model Y?

The Model Y comes equipped with standard safety features like forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, and lane-keeping assist. Tesla’s Full-Self Driving package offers additional advanced driving aids, although caution is advised as the system may have limitations and safety concerns. The Model Y has received top safety ratings from both the NHTSA and IIHS, earning recognition for its crashworthiness and safety features.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Is the Tesla Model Y a good choice for families?

A: The Model Y offers ample interior space and practicality, making it suitable for families. However, the limited third-row seating may not be ideal for larger families.

Q: How does the Model Y compare to other electric SUVs in its price range?

A: The Model Y stands out for its performance, range, and charging infrastructure compared to competitors, but potential buyers should also consider alternative options for value and features.

Q: What are the common issues reported with the Model Y?

A: Some common issues include build quality inconsistencies, noise complaints, and software glitches. It’s advisable to research and test drive the Model Y before making a purchase decision.


The Tesla Model Y offers a compelling package with its blend of performance, range, and technology. While it has its drawbacks, such as ride quality and interior noise, the Model Y remains a top contender in the electric SUV market. Potential buyers should weigh the pros and cons carefully and consider their specific needs before deciding on the Model Y as their next vehicle.

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