Refreshed Tesla Model 3 ‘Project Highland’ Caught Ahead Of Launch Later This Year


Tesla is hard at work preparing an update for the popular Model 3 sedan, and new photos of the car, which is reportedly carries the internal codename ‘Project Highland’, have surfaced on social media. Sporting camouflage front and back, the images offer a hint as to what the automaker is planning for the future of its entry level vehicle.

As is common for mid-cycle refreshes, the prototype Tesla Model 3 spied testing here has only limited camouflage, suggesting that the car will not change fundamentally in terms of design. Sections at the front and the back, though, are likely to be updated, as previous photos also suggest.

How apparent the new design will be to onlookers remains a matter of intrigue, but Tesla is expected to make the car’s body work simpler. Using its so-called “giga presses,” the automaker has been able to reduce the number of body panels on its vehicles, thus simplifying the assembly process.

Read: Facelifted 2024 Tesla Model 3 Spied Testing On The Streets Of California

That aspiration may be at odds with consumers’ desires to have vehicles that are easier to live with, though. Recent reports suggest that vehicles like the Model Y, which use the larger body panels, are more expensive to insure because even small amounts of damage are expensive to repair, something CEO Elon Musk has vowed to improve.

It will be interesting, therefore, to see how the new design balances these seemingly conflicting needs. Reports also suggest that new sensor hardware for the Model 3’s advanced driver assistance systems may be incorporated into the new front and back ends.

Although no photos of the interior were taken, Tesla is expected to further simplify the already spartan cabin. That should once again help it save on production costs (an important consideration given the looming EV price wars), though the automaker is said to be working to improve the areas with which occupants interact the most, namely the infotainment screen.

The EV maker will put the updated Model 3 into production in the third quarter of this year at its factory in Shanghai, with production also expected to start in California at the same time.

Photo The Kilowatts/Twitter


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