Tesla Model 3 due to complete production and begin delivery in late 2017 or early 2018. (Photo by Tesla)
Elon Musk must be smiling from ear to ear right about now. His companies launch of the Tesla Model 3 last has already been a huge success.
The interest for the Model 3 has resulted in more than 325,000 people who have already put down $1,000 to secure a reservation for the car. Not a bad total considering your car doesn’t even start delivery until late 2017 or early 2018.
Obviously interest is high and while the company has promised more announcements about the Model 3 before its release, and as pointed out by Yoni Heisler in this article, there’s one unique aspect of the Model 3 that, for whatever reason, hasn’t really attracted that much attention. Put simply, the Model 3 lacks an instrument panel (or instrument cluster as it’s called in the industry), a fixture of nearly every car that has ever existed.
As you can tell from the photos below, the only source of information about speed, range and other pertinent vehicle information is on the Model 3’s 15-inch center display.
Up close shot of the Model 3’s center display used for all vehicle information. (Photo by Tesla)
If you want to see how fast you’re going, you can’t quickly glance straight ahead like you’re accustomed to. Rather, you have to look a bit to your right and to the upper left hand corner of the display where a dedicated area will inform you as to your current speed.
There a few reasons we could mention as to why they didn’t include this normally important feature in their car, but ultimately it looks like Tesla is just trying to innovate where they can.
When asked the following question in the video below: “So do you think the fact that there’s no instrument cluster is actually going to make it to the production model?”
The Tesla rep then responds emphatically: “Yes. This is not a show car, this is an engineering prototype. This is our first engineering validation car that we’re working on. We’re actually doing drag testing with it, and we really wanted to make it production representative so it was useful… we don’t have time, it’s only a year and a half, we have to go with this.
All the same, some have also speculated that Tesla might make a HUD option available as an add-on by the time the Model 3 begins to ship.
We shall see what happens. In the meantime since almost no one is talking about this, check out the video below for more information.
Watch a test ride below: