One of the first Tesla Model 3 owners crash-tested the car before the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) got its hands on it. He’s alive and well, and it sounds like he’d give Tesla’s long-awaited entry-level model a five-star safety rating, but he made important suggestions Tesla quickly promised to implement.
Reddit user Model_3_Crash_Dummy posted several photos of a totaled Model 3 beached across a median, surrounded by debris, after a high-speed accident. The circumstances leading to the crash remain vague. The Redditor explained he can’t provide too many details because he is still working on a settlement with the insurance company.
Leftlane News reports the Model 3 slammed into a parked car at about 60 mph. We believe it. The impact left the car’s front end mangled beyond recognition, pushing parts of the body normally found right behind the front bumper into the wheelbase area. Surprisingly, and to Tesla’s credit, the cabin looks intact. The a-pillars didn’t buckle and the doors still open.
The driver and the front passenger escaped with minor injuries. In the original post, Model_3_Crash_Dummy wrote his right ankle began swelling after his foot hit the accelerator pedal. His passenger suffered bad cuts on her arm when the massive screen on the Model 3’s dashboard shattered. The Model 3 performed well, all things considered, but the accident brought safety hazards to light.
Step inside a Model 3 and you’ll notice the television-sized screen replaces every button, switch, dial, and knob normally found in a car’s cabin – including the glove box latch. With the unit broken, the owner couldn’t open the glove box to retrieve the car’s registration and insurance information. He also argued the cut on his passenger’s arm could have been avoided. Tesla CEO Elon Musk has already promised a fix.
“Adding software feature to open glove box automatically when car comes to a stop after a crash. Will look at bonding a thin plastic sheet to the front or back of screen,” he wrote on Twitter. Tesla can likely activate the first feature via an over-the-air software update.
“I love Tesla and already ordered a Model 3. Had this been a different car I would more than likely be dead,” the Redditor concluded. It’s unclear whether Tesla will give him preferential treatment and replace the car in a timely manner or send him to the back of the line.
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