As one of the most innovative car companies, Tesla continues to impress with its 2021 lineup. The new model year proves why Tesla is quickly becoming known for building cars super fun to drive. The four 2021 models Consumer Reports road-tested all performed with very good scores. Let’s breakdown how each of the 2021 Tesla models performed on the CR road test.
The Tesla Model S has the highest road test results
As a fully electric car, the Tesla Model S performs remarkably. Its road test score of 97 makes it the top pick by Consumer Reports, which noted that “It’s one of the best cars we’ve ever tested.” Although the overall look of the Model S hasn’t changed drastically since its 2012 inception, Tesla has made numerous upgrades where it counts. These include increased battery capacity, standard AWD, and the new Autopilot technology.
The Tesla Model S offers instant speed that makes it super fun to drive without emissions and low operating costs. Stepping on the throttle brings a silent surge of power that quickly grabs both the driver’s and passengers’ attention. The extensive up to 402-mile range of the least expensive Model S version on a fully charged battery makes the switch to an electric car almost flawless. For an even greater driving distance, the top-of-the-line version has a 520-mile range. The stylish Tesla Model S does not disappoint in appearance or performance.
Road test results for the Model Y
As one of the newer offerings of Tesla’s all-electric lineup, the Model Y is basically an SUV version of the Model 3. The luxury compact SUV received an impressive road test score of 90 from CR.
The Long Range AWD model tested by CR offers a healthy 326-mile driving range on a full charge. While it offers a satisfying off-the-line burst of power and sports-car-like handling, the ride is not so pleasant, noted as “too stiff and choppy” in its CR road test results.
How did the Tesla Model X perform on the CR road test?
Tesla is known for its unique electric lineup but did the 2021 Model X take it too far? While the new Model X has a long list of gizmos and gadgets that are sure to thrill, it seems practicality was sacrificed in the process.
The CR road test is one of the lowest in Tesla’s 2021 lineup at 83. The X’s larger battery in 2021 gives the Long Range Plus version a driving range of 371 miles. The electric SUV offers familiar instant acceleration expected from EVs, and its stable handling is refreshing from the top-heavy feel of some SUVs. However, the uncomfortable ride, unsatisfying wind noise, and lack of usability and utility for the everyday user are huge letdowns for this luxury SUV.
How the Model 3 performed on the road test
As the most affordable version, it’s not surprising that the Tesla Model 3 compact sports car is Tesla’s most popular model. CR scored the Tesla Model 3 with a road test score of 82. Depending on the version, it provides a driving range of 263 to 353 miles, making it a fun car to drive without the worry of getting stranded.
The Model 3’s handling is impressively quick with responsive steering, but it’s at the detriment of the car’s ride comfort. It’s an overly stiff ride that also suffers from wind noise at highway speeds. However, the unique no-key feature of the Model 3 showcases the company’s focus on innovative options. Instead, the owner can download the Tesla app for their smartphone to be used as a key. For those not choosing the app, the manufacturer provides a “key” card that resembles a credit card that can be swiped in two separate, specific locations to unlock and take off in the car.