What, you thought Elon Musk wouldn't go hardcore with the aerodynamics of the Tesla Model 3? No, the legendarily detail-oriented car chief is spurring his designers to make the lower-priced Model 3 as wind-cutting as possible. And it's all for the sake of the longest possible single-charge range, according to Electrek.
The Model 3 is expected to be about the size of a BMW 3-series vehicle and boast at least a 200-mile single-charge range. More impressive, still, may be that Musk is pushing for the model to have drag coefficient under .20. That would approach the aerodynamics of a Volkswagen XL1 or an old GM EV1 (pre-crushed, of course), and it would be the lowest of any mass-production vehicle in the world. We imaging driving that thing downhill will be full of coast-y fun.
Tesla spokeswoman Alexis Georgeson wrote in an e-mail to Autoblog that the company doesn't comment on speculation.
This summer, a widescreen shot of a TV broadcast may have revealed a clay version of the Model 3 prototype under a car cover, but there seemed to be more angularity than what a record low drag coefficient would imply. This isn't the only part of the Model 3 puzzle that still needs to be solved. Musk said this summer that the Model 3 would require a "fully operational Gigafactory," referencing Tesla's mammoth battery plant being built out in the Reno, Nevada, hinterlands. That's because such a large scale will be required to cut the battery costs enough to bring down the price of the Model 3. There's still time to solve things, since the slippery model won't be available to the public until at least 2017. We should get our first glimpse of the car in March.