Tesla has an impressive selection of electric vehicles, but only two models can comfortably house a family of seven. The Tesla Model X SUV is the older one of the two, first released for the 2016 model year. The Model Y first released with the ability to seat five and promise for upcoming seating for seven. The Model X has already received a styling update, plus improved mileage on Long Range variants and speed on the Plaid models.
More importantly, customer satisfaction is at an all-time high. According to Consumer Reports, the Tesla Model X is one of the five most satisfying three-row SUVs. CR awards this title to cars so good that customers love it regardless of its flaws.
What do drivers love the most about the Tesla Model X?
Surveys showed that drivers were highly impressed with the Tesla Model X’s performance. The Long Range model has two electric motors paired with AWD, producing 670 hp. The Model X Plaid has three motors, capable of 1020 hp with a reported 0-60 mph time of 2.5 seconds.
In the Long Range model tested by CR, it still got a reasonably quick time of 4.9 seconds. It feels lithe around corners and doesn’t exhibit any noticeable body roll. For 2021, the Long Range model can be driven for up to 360 miles on a single charge. The range on the Plaid models is also still impressive at 340 miles.
Unfortunately, ride quality is compromised by the Model X’s overwhelmingly stiff suspension. CR was impressed with the Model X’s braking performance but determined that the Autopilot feature needs some fine-tuning. The Model X can also tow up to 5,000 pounds, but doing so will likely decrease its range.
Does the Model X have a nice interior?
The Tesla Model X’s interior also got a high score on owner surveys, but CR was less enthusiastic. While aesthetically pleasing, testers found it to have a more artificial quality compared to others in the segment. Still, it’s hard not to be impressed with the huge center touchscreen, inviting wood-clad dashboard, and plush door panels.
The seats are also quite comfortable, with mostly good visibility for the driver. The Model X is available in multiple seating configurations, as many as seven or as few as five. The seven-seater has generous seating in the first two rows, but CR cautions that the third row is only kid-friendly.
CR was also unimpressed by the second-row captain’s chairs, which can’t be folded. The motorized gull-wing doors seem like they would make second-row access easier, but CR hated them. They open too slowly and the sensors can be easily confused by inanimate obstacles.
The Tesla Model X’s weak spots
Only 27 percent of drivers felt that the Tesla Model X was worth the price they paid for it. A Long Range model retails for $84,690 and the Plaid models cost an extra $30,000. At those prices, drivers might be disappointed with no common smartphone integration and a blind-spot monitoring system that proves more distracting than useful.
CR also doesn’t think that the wind noise present inside the Model X is befitting of a luxury vehicle. The lack of utility from the cumbersome second row and the uncomfortable ride both also reduce the Model X’s value.
While an improvement compared to earlier years, the 2021 Tesla Model X also has a below-average reliability score. Owners reported body rattling, water leaking from the doors, and peeling exterior tape on the 2019 model. Some drivers also had problems with severe vibration while driving or towing a trailer.
Despite these offenses, even the 2019 Tesla Model X has a near-perfect owner satisfaction rating. This EV definitely has some issues, but owners are willing to forgive it for its unrivaled performance and styling.