Tesla Model 3 Electric Vehicle

overall rating:

2

planets

AbdulHameed Raji
3/21/2022
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Everyone is turning to electric vehicles to solve one of the major emitters of carbon – road transportation. The Model 3, an electric vehicle from Tesla, is under the global spotlight especially as it has received several reviews. Although electric vehicles may have zero footprint operationally, how well does it pass the embodied emissions test? 

What it's made of:

2.5

The vehicle is made of more than 75% steel and some aluminium for its body parts. This is to make the vehicle lighter than its previous models especially as weight may also affect the range and frequency of charging. The body houses the battery compartment which feeds the electric motors that move the vehicle. It has more glass content as seen from its final looks with its hood made of tempered glass. These three major components are of great concern in terms of carbon emissions. The issue with batteries is that lithium will pose another problem as it approaches end-of-life especially with reuse and recycling. Lithium mining potentially causes water loss, threat to biodiversity, toxic waste and increased salinity of rivers. For steel and tempered glass, the production processes are improving but not yet satisfactory as they require high energy usage. The leather used in the Tesla Model 3 is vegan and made from synthetic materials (i.e. plastic). Overall, most of the parts are recyclable.

How it's made:

1.5

Tesla’s Model 3 is made in Fremont, California serving North American customers with Shanghai's Gigafactory 3 serving Asian and European clients. One impressive process in the production of the Model 3 is in the automation of its assembly and incorporation of renewable energy sources in manufacturing. In addition to this, most of the components used in the vehicle are either produced in the factory or sourced locally reducing the need for complex supply chain and procurement. However, of a greater interest is the distribution of these vehicles to its sales centres especially as the distance from the factory to the point of purchase is quite the distance across international waters and boundaries. Only large vehicles, cargo aeroplanes and ships can perform those operations and they use considerable carbon emitting sources presently. On a lighter note, Tesla has social services for its employees in the factories like training centres, cafeteria, gym, medical centres balancing their work and life. There are plans for the company to build more factories in strategic areas.

Who makes it:

2

Tesla is well known for disrupting the automotive industry with its electric vehicles. According to Statista, in 2021, Tesla had a 13.84% pug-in electric vehicle market share worldwide. Tesla sold 70 thousand more EVs than its closest competition in 2018 and the race for EVs towards 2035 and beyond may require Tesla to release some of its operating conditions. Although charging is a concern for EV owners, Tesla is still ahead in terms of providing supercharging stations for its drivers. Lastly, as an EV company, Tesla is quite conscious of its environmental impact and some of its offerings portray that, from: Vegan Leather seats, the least energy consumed in producing an EV, using wood in the vehicle etc.

 

Caveat: This review is based on the information available in the public domain. This may understate or overstate actual figures and facts of the company’s contributions to greenhouse gas emissions. To make an informed decision for your purchase, kindly acquire more information directly from the company.

Sources:

Are Tesla Seats Real Leather? (Durability Test). https://rechargd.com/are-tesla-seats-real-leather/

CNN – The great electric car race is just beginning. https://edition.cnn.com/interactive/2019/08/business/electric-cars-audi-volkswagen-tesla/

Electrek – Tesla Model 3: here’s the alloy mix of the Model 3 body. https://electrek.co/2017/08/22/tesla-model-3-body-alloy-mix/

Engine Patrol – Where are Tesla Model 3 Made? https://enginepatrol.com/where-are-tesla-model-3-made/

Forbes – How green is Tesla, Really? https://www.forbes.com/sites/timabansal/2021/05/13/how-green-is-tesla-really/?sh=3eff65071576

Statista - Global plug-in electric vehicle market share in 2021, by main producer.  https://www.statista.com/statistics/541390/global-sales-of-plug-in-electric-vehicle-manufacturers/

Tesla – Model 3. https://www.tesla.com/model3

Tesla - 2019 Impact Report. https://www.tesla.com/ns_videos/2019-tesla-impact-report.pdf