Test: rather the cheapest Tesla Model 3 than the most expensive Volkswagen ID.3

We compare the Model 3 Standard Range Plus with 55 kWh and the Volkswagen ID.3 Max with 58 kWh. In this summary of the extensive test in the magazine, we focus on the range, the interior space and the equipment.

Range: the economical Model 3 goes further komt

We test the power consumption with an outside temperature of 5 degrees. Electric cars don’t like cold. That is why the Volkswagen ID.3 scored lower consumption than 21.0 kWh/100 km during an earlier test with warmer weather. The Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus is just as cold, but does its job more efficiently and settles for 16.8 kWh/100 km.

This results in a range of 276 kilometers for the Volkswagen ID.3 with 58 kWh and a driving range of 327 kilometers for the Model 3 with ‘only’ 55 kWh.

Not only does the Model 3’s battery drain more slowly so you can get further, it also recharges faster. The entry-level Model 3 can fast charge with 170 kW, while the ID.3 supports a charging capacity of 100 kW.

Interior space: the high ID.3 against the low Model 3

The ID.3 is a car in the Golf class, but as soon as you put it next to the Model 3, you notice that it is very high for a hatchback. The Tesla Model 3 is long and low: it is 43 centimeters in length and 14 centimeters in height.

Inside, a few things stand out. In the Tesla you are eleven centimeters closer to the asphalt than in the Volkswagen. The Model 3’s wider cab gives you more room for your shoulders and elbows, while the ID.3’s narrow center tunnel provides more legroom. Passengers taller than six feet are seated in both rear seats for headroom. As for the legroom in the back, the Volkswagen has our slight preference.

When you lift the large tailgate of the ID.3, you can load 385 to 1267 liters of luggage. The Model 3 is not a hatchback but a sedan and offers space for 542 liters: 486 liters in the back and 56 liters in the ‘frunk’ under the front cover.

Equipment: Volkswagen offers extra comfort

The cheapest Volkswagen ID.3 with 58 kWh costs 36,890 euros. The ID.3 Max is the top model and costs no less than 47,690 euros. Add to that the additional cost of 1141 euros for the 20-inch wheels of the test car and you have a car that is almost as expensive as the cheapest Tesla. Then you get the extra comfort of the Ergo-Active seats and the adaptive shock absorbers. In our previous test you can read how well they liked it.

The entry-level Model 3 may have average seats and conventional shock absorbers, but the 15-inch touchscreen that doubles as an instrument panel looks slick and works smoothly.


It feels good that Volkswagen uses the most comfortable front seats and the smoothest shock absorbers for its best customers. Because when you spend 50 grand, you still want to be pampered a bit. Tesla doesn’t do that anyway, regardless of what the car costs. In terms of interior space, they don’t differ much from each other.

On the other hand, the Model 3 Standard Range Plus has the largest range and can charge faster than the ID.3. Those are significant pluses. So heavy, in fact, that we prefer the entry-level Model 3 over the top ID.3.

Curious about all the reasons to choose the Tesla Model 3? Read the full test from Auto Review 6/2021! Buy the magazine in the store or order Auto Review 6 in our webshop.

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