Why You Should And Shouldn't Buy The Tesla Model Y

Almost every single car has certain positive and negative attributes. Electric cars are no different in that regard. Therefore, we decided to assemble a series of articles focused on the pros and cons of numerous popular EVs that are sold in the U.S.

Tesla is currently the EV sales leader in the United States. In Q1 2022, Tesla delivered 113,882 cars in the US, resulting in a 75% EV market share. In fact, every one of Tesla’s models made it to the top 10 list of EVs sold here.

However, with more affordable and newer entries heading to the market, the Tesla Model Y faces more competition than ever, so is it worth it in 2022? What are the main reasons to buy or not to buy the crossover electric Tesla Model Y? Let’s lay it all out.

Pro: Range

While Teslas are notorious for not achieving their EPA ranges in real-world highway tests, the Model Y still has plenty of range for most daily driving and even road trips.

The EPA rates the 2022 Tesla Model Y Long Range at 330 miles and the Performance at 303 miles. With our calculations from previous tests, we think it’s fair to see around 290 miles in the Long Range and 265 in the Performance for 70-mph highway driving. Still, 290 miles can get you from Orlando to Miami with over 50 miles to spare.

  • Hyundai IONIQ 5 Range: 220 to 303 miles
  • Ford Mustang Mach-E Range: 224 to 314 miles
  • Kia EV6 Range: 232 to 310 miles
  • Volkswagen ID.4: 240 to 260 miles

Pro: Software and OTA Updates

Unlike other legacy automakers hoping to be masters of software, Tesla seems to be one of just a few that can pull software updates off well. Tesla regularly releases updates, nearly on a monthly basis, providing an array of new features and goodies. For instance, Tesla has updated its vehicles to include convenient features like cabin overheat protection and better traffic and environment visualizations for Autopilot.

Pro: Supercharging Network

Possibly Tesla’s strongest attribute is its excellent charging network. Superchargers are incredibly reliable, intuitive, and relatively inexpensive. Tesla has over 1,400 stations around the United States, and each is home to a few or dozens (some sites have over 50, but the average is 10.2 per site) of charging stalls.

Tesla has also almost flawlessly integrated the Supercharging network into the on-screen infotainment, and it can plan routes that save time. Besides showing drivers how many individual chargers are active, the system can also incorporate the duration at each station, as hopping to chargers at lower battery percentages is more advantageous than just staying at one. 

The Electrify America network (the second largest in the U.S.) continues its rapid growth and in about three and a half years had 800 charging stations and roughly 3,500 individual ultra-fast chargers open or with construction completed as of Q1 2022. Those numbers are higher now, but still short of Tesla’s count. However, Electrify America has high marks when it comes to its network too.

Pro: Performance

The Tesla Model Y Dual Motor Long Range can accelerate to sixty in 4.8 seconds, and the Performance version can reach the mark in just 3.5 seconds, according to Tesla. Those figures place the Model Y near the lead in the electric SUV category. Tesla’s traction control is solid, so it can easily handle wet and snowy roads.

Some competitive models are listed below (note: 0-60 mph times vary based on trims):

  • Hyundai IONIQ 5 0-60 MPH: 5 – ~ 8 seconds
  • Ford Mustang Mach-E 0-60 MPH: 3.5 – 6.1 seconds
  • Kia EV6 0-60 MPH: 5.1 – 8.0 seconds
  • Volkswagen ID.4: 5.7 – 7.8 seconds

Pro: Safety

While Tesla’s Full-Self Driving isn’t really ‘full-self driving,’ the Texas-based OEM still offers an exceptional array of safety features. Sure, some features like Summon seem a bit glitchy or even half-baked, but the base Autopilot system is an essential feature for reduced stress driving. Plus, with Tesla’s incredible vehicular structure safety ratings, the Model Y can likely stay better intact in rollover scenarios versus similar vehicles.

Con: Recent Price Increases

Since the $39,990 Model Y Standard Range RWD was discontinued, the new ‘entry-level’ model is the Long Range Dual Motor AWD*. It now starts at $65,990, a $17,000 premium over the Dual Motor’s price around a year and a half ago. The Performance’s pricing has also increased to $69,990 from $59,990. These are massive price increases for what are the same cars. Elon Musk even considers these prices to be embarrassing and notes that prices may decrease once inflation subsides, so maybe now is not the time to buy a Model Y.

Additionally, the Model Y is not eligible for the $7,500 federal tax credit, while the vehicles listed below still are.

  • Hyundai IONIQ 5 pricing: $39,700 – $54,500
  • Ford Mustang Mach-E pricing: 43,895 – $67,995
  • Kia EV6 pricing: $40,900 – $58,500
  • Volkswagen ID.4 pricing: $40,760 – $48,940

Con: Lengthy Lead Times

Due to increased demand and some supply chain issues, the Model Y’s lead times are pretty long. Buyers opting in for the base Long Range AWD model should expect a delivery time of April through July of 2023. Upgrade to the 20″ wheels, and the delivery date shortens to January through April 2023.

If you want to take delivery of a Model Y this year, buyers should order the Performance variant as that will guarantee a delivery date of 1 to 3 months. 

We should note that several other popular electric vehicles are sold out for all of 2022 too and that there are notable production constraints affecting other EVs that are in the same class as the Model Y.

*The Made-in-Texas Standard Range Dual Motor is not yet widely available. 

Stick with us as this is an ongoing series in which we will highlight the pros and cons of a wide variety of popular electric vehicles.

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