A photo of a different-looking Tesla Model 3 has been making the rounds on social media, and some are claiming it could be the new Model 3 Highland refresh project.
Late last year, we started hearing rumors that Tesla was working on a Model 3 refresh that would come in the second half of 2023.
The project would be codenamed “Highland”.
For a few years now, Tesla has been integrating its large molding technology into the Model Y with large single molding parts replacing dozens of parts in the electric SUV.
This new technology has allowed Tesla to significantly improve manufacturing efficiency with the Model Y compared to the Model 3. CEO Elon Musk said that Tesla will eventually bring the same technology to the Model 3, but he could not say exactly when.
The problem is that such a Model 3 update would temporarily slow production, and Tesla couldn’t afford it as it ramped up Model Y production even further. However, Model Y production is now starting to exceed the Model 3 production, and it could be a good time for Tesla to update the Model 3 using the technology.
In December, Model 3 prototype with heavy camo spotted being tested in California.
Another prototype was spotted shortly after because Tesla should be closer to the exit of the vehicle.
With the heavy camouflage on the front and back of these prototypes, it was difficult to identify a specific change to the Model 3.
But now a new image of what some claim is the Tesla Model 3 refresh has circulated and clearly shows the vehicle’s new front end.
The picture was posted on Tesla subreddit without any information on the origin:
At this point, there’s no way to confirm that this is indeed a Tesla prototype for the refresh or a vehicle with a body kit trying to pass as one.
But in any case, the front-end is really interesting, and I personally like it a lot.
The headlights are very different, and it’s unclear if the rest of the front fascia is updated or if it’s just the new headlight and the lack of a Tesla badge giving it a much more aggressive look.
It works for me.
Some have also suggested that zooming inside the cabin might show a curve on the dash indicating an instrument cluster display, but I’m personally not sure I can see that.
I also doubt that Tesla would introduce an additional display inside the Model 3. I think the automaker is trying to cut refresh costs.
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