Tesla Model Y rear-wheel-drive review: price, specifications, driving impressions

Tesla has been under fire recently: price cuts, falling sales and shipyards allegedly full of cars that can’t be moved.

Add to that an owner who has an incredible talent for rubbing people the wrong way, and it looks like a perfect storm.

But none of this changes the uncomfortable truth for Musk/Tesla haters – the Model Y is the best electric car on sale.

Here are five things you need to know about the popular SUV.

The price is right, unless you bought it two months ago

Tesla has dropped the price of its most affordable and popular rear-wheel-drive Model Y by nearly $10,000 over the past two months, which is great news for those who want an EV, and really bad news for those who have made the decision. before. Depreciation is the single largest cost of car ownership, and you don’t need to be a math genius to figure out what these kinds of discounts do to the price of a used Tesla. There are Tesla owners who paid about $17,000 more for their Model Y two years ago. Ouch! At about $61,000 drive away, the Model Y is a steal, especially when you consider that the second best electric vehicle on sale, the Hyundai Ioniq 5, costs about $12,000 more. It also costs a little to run a Tesla. The most you’ll pay to fill up is about $40 at the charger. Charging at home costs half as much, while Origin Energy customers can pay just $5 to charge. Unlike its rivals, Tesla also has a dedicated charging network, eliminating range concerns during road trips.

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It’s a lot of fun to drive

Tesla’s advantage over the rest of the auto industry is primarily in electric vehicle technology, but the company knows the fundamentals of automotive engineering and design very well. The rear-wheel-drive model delivers strong, silent and smooth acceleration off-target, reaching 100 km/h in a brisk 6.9 seconds. It backs this up with impressive composure, sitting flat in corners and disguising its weight well when asked to change direction in a hurry. There’s plenty of grip, the steering is sharp and precise, and it settles into center bumps better than most EVs. But it’s not perfect. The brakes lack feel and the ride can be jerky on rough roads at low speeds.

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There is a lot of space inside

Tesla’s cabin is a cavity. Second-row passengers have plenty of legroom, and the flat bottom means they can fit three people comfortably. The seats themselves aren’t the ultimate in comfort – you sit on them rather than sink into them – but they’re all heated. Tesla’s biggest asset is its ability to swallow luggage. The rear boot is plenty big, but there’s more storage under the floor and the trunk – the front trunk – is under the bonnet, which is lined with plastic, making it ideal for storing wet, gritty towels. Toyota’s best-selling SUV, the RAV4, has 542 liters of boot space, while the Y model has 971 litres.

It’s safe as houses, but a little annoying

Tesla is one of the safest cars on the road. In 2022, it passed physical crash barrier tests and scored 98 percent for its crash avoidance technology. Its lane-keeping assist and radar cruise control are better calibrated than most, but it lacks rear cross-traffic alert, which is handy for pulling out of driveways. For some reason, our test vehicle didn’t like tunnels. It slowed dramatically several times for no apparent reason. It’s easy to override, but annoying nonetheless.

You will either love technology or hate it

Everything in the Model Y is accessible via the iPad-like center screen. And when we say it all, we mean it – if you want to open the drawer, you have to do it via the center screen. The speedo is also located on the center screen and takes some getting used to. Instead of Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, Tesla lets you log into your Spotify account if you have one. It’s worth the effort because the sound system is the real deal. You can also watch Netflix and play arcade games while waiting for a charge.

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