What makes the Tesla Model 3 the UK’s Car of the Year 2019

Rhys Adams
8 min readJul 26, 2019


The Tesla Model 3 hasn’t been available for long in the UK, but it doesn’t stop the massive hype and with winning Auto Express’ car of the year 2019 along with its 5 star safety rating from Euro NCAP, the Tesla Model 3 is going to be an extremely popular car.

I’m going to go into a few areas where I feel that the Tesla Model 3 is better than any other car on the road in the UK, those may argue with regards to how gas guzzlers still rule or that you suffer from range anxiety, but when Tesla give you the opportunity to have over 300 miles worth of range from a charge, there shouldn’t be any reason not to consider it.

Tesla Model 3 is great for company car users

At the moment, if you owned a Tesla Model 3, HMRC have a benefit-in-kind tax of 16%, this at the time of writing is the lowest rate available by the taxman in the UK. In the tax year 20/21 both new and existing Tesla cars will be liable for 0%! Yes, Zero!

This does increase in 2021/2022 to 1%, then 2022/2023 to 2% but its worth taking a serious look at the Tesla Model 3 range, the saving on a company car user and even a business owner is huge.

On top of this companies purchasing a Tesla get a 100% First Year Allowance, it is applicable to a new (not used) Tesla Model 3, although cars still considered new include ex-demonstrators, cars used as courtesy cars, etc.

Its no wonder our short term car leasing enquiries are up, awaiting for the drop in company car tax until their new electric cars have been delivered!

Credit: Tesla.com

Live in Scotland and want an Interest Free Loan to buy a Tesla Model 3?

Yes you’ve read it right! If you live in Scotland, you can apply to Transport Scotland and they will fund up to £35,000 for purchases of a new plug-in electric vehicle for personal use. If you own a business, this is up to £120,000.

Upgradable Cars

Usually, you go to a dealer and purchase that expensive German brand, drive off the forecourt and apart from a few map updates to a Satellite Navigation system thats already causing you issues, thats it.

They don’t take the car back after a few months and give you any upgrades or performance upgrades, they may fix a few bugs but thats it. They very rarely even clean your car nowadays.

But with Tesla’s and not just the Model 3, updates are provided over the air! Thats right, imagine this situation… You’re just about to go to bed, your car is sat on the driveway on charge. Whilst you’re counting sheep, the car is most probably updating its software/firmware to give you additional feature.

More recently this is has included activating the Tesla Dashcam, Sentry Mode and even performance and range improvements. This hasn’t just been applied to the latest cars, even cars on older reg plates have had some serious upgrades. This really is the future of motoring.

Charging the Tesla Model 3

This is where you get the majority of haters, when it comes to any EV cars, not just the Tesla Model 3. Charging! So last night, it took me 10 minutes to put 74 litres of fuel into my wife’s car, on that tank she has done close to 600 miles and its lasted 3 weeks.

The Tesla we have on order would give us 348 miles based on WLTP figures, if we went for a run and needed a supercharger spot, to add 100 miles, this would take us approx. at 10.6 miles per minute, it would take roughly 10 minutes, whilst its not the 600 miles that the fuel gave me, its a lot cheaper at 24p per kwh.

Plus, the car would have probably been charged at home over night to say 80% (recommended charge capacity for a Tesla Model 3), so that would just really be a top up. Plus we have lots of Costa Coffee stops, so we could integrate the charge with a coffee.

And of course, if you use and refer a Tesla Referral Code, you could bag 1,000 miles each and every time somebody orders one. If you are wondering, we have included a Tesla referral code at the bottom of this story.

The Tesla Model 3 is one of the safest cars on the road

We are currently really lucky that we currently run a car thats been awarded a high rating on the Euro NCAP safety tests, but the Tesla Model 3 has surpassed the marks. With Euro NCAP going as far as awarding 96% for its Adult Occupant score and 94% for its Safety Assist which covers the Tesla’s Lane Departure Avoidance, Emergency Lane Departure Avoidance.

The safety equipment on board really is amazing and it gets improved with time thanks to the over-the-air software upgrades. To find out how safe a Tesla is, just go on to YouTube and search for Tesla crash avoidance.

Low price of the Tesla Model 3

Ok, so the Tesla Model 3 isn’t in the reach of everyone at the moment, but with the Standard Range Plus model starting at £36,490 after the government grant, compared to its German equivalents, this car is a real bargain.

You get 254 miles of range (WLTP figures) and a lot of kit including Heated Front Seats, 12 way adjustable seats, Upgraded Audio system with immersive sound and that amazing touchscreen experience with no lag.

A lot of the standard features of even the Standard Range Plus, are optional on quite a few of the German marks, go for the Long Range or Premium and you add much more including heated rear seats, premium connectivity, LED fog lights and much more.

On top of that specification, you get that gorgeous panoramic glass roof ultraviolet and infrared protection.

Work out the figures including running costs of an equivalent Audi A4, Mercedes C Class or BMW 3 series and you’ll soon be ordering the Tesla Model 3.

Tesla Model 3 Performance

For those who do want to splash out on their next Tesla Model 3, then they may opt for the Performance model! Not only does this give you a range of 329 miles and a top speed of 162 mph (where permit able) but it also gives you a 0–60 of 3.2 seconds, that is seriously quick.

On top of the performance figures, it has upgraded Alloy Whees to 20", Performance Brakes, Carbon Fibre Spoiler, Lowered Suspension and Track Mode. If you go for standard colour, standard interior and leave out the self driving option, it can be yours for £49,140. Bargain in my eyes.

The future is Electric Cars

Whilst many may disagree due to the poor infrastructure of the UK and lack of charging points, Electric cars look to be the future for a long while to come. Yes we’ve got Hydrogen cars on the road, but who wants to drive a mini-Zeppelin around the streets of London.

Our Government and Boris Johnson really need to improve the reachability of running electric cars in the United Kingdom, we need to bring down the VAT on Solar Panels, install charging points into lamp posts and make the whole system easier to use.

We need grants for companies like Tesco’s, INTU, Westfield, Sainsbury’s to install more charges in more spaces and subsidise the use of energy with Solar power on their huge supermarket/mall roofs.

Re-introduce the scrappage scheme to get diesel and petrol cars off the road and get people into plugin hybrids and electric cars, support third world countries by exporting some of these vehicles in exchange for something else.

Conclusion of the Tesla Model 3 Car of The Year 2019

So I have covered a few points myself on why the Tesla Model 3 deserves Auto Express’ car of the year 2019, I myself cannot wait to get my hands on one and it will be a long time coming. Elon Musk has really made a dint in the automotive industry that we knew, and it was overdue.

Finally car firms such as BMW, Land Rover, Aston Martin, Lotus are waking up and realising that they need to pull their finger out and get developing the next generation of car firms.

Batteries will be the area that hold the vehicles back, but with more and more companies spending billions on R&D for batteries, we may have more of a solution in the next decade.

The Tesla Model 3 is in my eyes a bargain, I do hope to see as many on the road as Cortina’s and Mondeo’s in the 80’s and 90’s.

What are your thoughts on the Tesla Model 3?

What are your thoughts on the Tesla Model 3 winning car of the year 2019 with Auto Express? Do you think it’s well deserved? Is there a car that they have missed? Let me know below in the comments.

Tesla Model 3 UK Referral Code

If you are looking to order a Tesla Model 3 and want to receive 1,000 supercharger miles, then please use my code below. I will also receive 1,000 miles by you using my code.

Referral Link: https://ts.la/rhys58317

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Rhys Adams

I live in a beautiful town called Belper on the edge of the Peak District with my wife Rebecca. I enjoy writing, photography and gadgets.