tesla model 3 interior review
Blog Car Guide

Inside the Tesla Model 3 : Interior Features to Know About

When the Tesla Model 3 hit the Canadian market back in 2018, it arrived with an entirely re-imagined dashboard design. Highly controversial, it quickly influenced the cabins of more mainstream carmakers.

Let’s look back at this interior as we underline all the neat features you should know about inside a Tesla Model 3.

If you happen to be shopping for a Tesla now, view all our used Tesla cars and SUVs here.

Goodbye gauges and…air vents?

Today, it’s common for modern automobiles to throw away the traditional gauge cluster in favor of a fully digital display, but Tesla is among the pioneers in that field. The Model 3 goes a step further by completely deleting the traditional gauge pod, leading to an empty area behind the steering wheel. All of the car’s crucial information, like speed, mileage and range are regrouped within the car’s central command screen.

When Tesla’s engineers were busy turning the Model 3’s dashboard from design to reality, Elon Musk – Tesla’s CEO – was hammering them on the head with silly ergonomic requests. For instance, he insisted that there be only one screen to group all of the car’s controls and information. He also wanted no visible air vents. 

Model 3 interior | Photo: Tesla 

Say what? That’s right: the air vents, used to cool down or warm up the Model 3’s interior, aren’t visible at all, meaning you’ll never see where the air is coming from.

The car is always watching you

The Model 3 already knows you’re on your way. Thanks to an app on your smartphone, the car detects the driver as he or she approaches the car. The Model 3 unlocks its doors and turns on the moment you sit inside the driver’s seat. All that’s left for you to do is put the car in the D position thanks to the stalk located on the right-hand side of the steering column, and you’re off.

Skip the Tesla app with the guest key card

Let’s say you need to lend your car to a friend or a family member. They don’t necessarily have the Tesla app. In these cases, the Model 3 comes with a guest key card, like in a hotel. The user simply taps the card onto the car’s B pillar (towards the right-hand side of the driver’s door) to unlock the doors. Once inside, your guest needs to place the card onto the center console, and the Model 3 fires up. Meanwhile, you can monitor their every move via the Tesla app on your phone. You can even unlock the doors for them this way, a handy feature if they’re hands are full.

Model 3 interior | Photo: Tesla 

Oh, and one last thing: the Model 3 is constantly checking its surroundings thanks to cameras located on the car’s fenders, doors and even inside the cabin. That cabin camera, by the way, is watching you while you drive. Creepy! 

The Screen Controls Everything

We’ve already established that the Tesla Model 3’s infotainment screen houses most of the car’s vital information, but that’s also where most of the car’s controls are stored. Need to adjust the mirrors or the steering wheel? You’ll need to first activate the function from the infotainment screen, then operate them via two steering wheel-mounted rotary knobs. Headlights and wipers are also activated via the car’s central command screen.

Speaking of steering wheels, the 1,020 hp, $170,000 Tesla Model S Plaid we reviewed here sports a very distinct yoke-style steering wheel reminiscent of the car KITT from Knight Rider. We’re going to guess Elon is a Michael Knight fan, and we can’t blame him. 

Back to the Model 3 interior, that screen allows the driver to access a wide range of information and features. For instance, Tesla modeled its own version of Google Maps for navigation. It’s also handy to locate the supercharger network. And if Earth is too boring for you, the map will even show you the surface of the planet Mars:

The Model 3 is constantly connected to the internet (a data subscription service may be required), so it knows if nearby supercharger stations are available or not. This also allows the system to continuously improve thanks to over-the-air updates, a technology Tesla also pioneered.

Once you’re parked and waiting for the car to charge, you can download apps and games to help pass the time. It’s even possible to install YouTube or Netflix on that screen and indulge in your favorite TV series or online video. If you’re curious how long it takes to charge a Model 3, read our Charging a Tesla resource here.

Looking for a bit of a laugh? The Model 3 allows you to change the car’s blinker tone into fart noises. You can even activate a whoopee cushion feature to surprise your passengers as they enter the car. Downloadable apps and features mean your Model 3 is constantly changing over time.

Spacious Cabin, Lots of Cargo Space

Since electric vehicles don’t need as much mechanical hardware as gasoline ones, they tend to have more passenger and cargo room for a similar size point. Tesla proves this with the Model 3 by manufacturing a compact sport sedan that’s about the same size as a BMW 3 Series, but considerably more spacious inside.

Up front, the Model 3’s clean dashboard design, massive windshield and polarized glass roof lead to a vast, well-lit and airy feeling, with near perfect all around visibility.

Model 3 interior | Photo: Tesla 

Rear leg and head room in a Model 3 are also class-leading, notably thanks to a completely flat floor. For cargo space, the Model 3 splits the storage space into two compartments. There’s a traditional trunk out the rear, and a frunk (front trunk) in the front of the car where the internal combustion engine would normally be. 

Combined, these two compartments total 649 liters of available cargo space, which is considerably more than a BMW 3 Series (481 liters).

Pros and Cons of the Tesla Model 3 Interior


  • Glass roof, uncluttered dashboard, and large windshield lead to a well-lit, airy, and spacious feeling.
  • The central command screen is easy to comprehend, well-laid out and loaded with neat features and technology.
  • No need to fiddle with a key fob or a starter button, the car senses you’re close by and turns on automatically.


  • Steering wheel and mirror adjustment buttons deserve simple, physical controls.
  • The absence of a conventional gauge pod takes some getting used to.
  • That inboard camera is creepy, and Tesla keeps the contents of what it records for itself. 

Shop our EVs and used Tesla models here.

Model 3 interior | Photo: Tesla 

Tesla Model 3 Key Interior Specifications

Passenger/Seating Capacity

5 Adults

Total Passenger Volume

2,746 L

Front Head Room

1,016 mm

Front Leg Room

1, 067 mm

Front Shoulder Room

1,422 mm

Front Hip Room

1,346 mm

Second Row Head Room

940 mm

Second Row Leg Room

889 mm

Second Row Shoulder Room

1,372 mm

Second Row Hip Room

1,321 mm

Front Trunk (Frunk) Cargo Space

88 L

Rear Trunk Cargo Space

561 L

Total Cargo Space

649 L


Buy Your Next Used Car Online

Browse by Category

Research Categories
We Want Your Car

The Easiest Way to Buy or Sell a Car