31 Aug Tesla Model 3 Smart Air Suspension is coming in six months, says Elon Musk
Aug 31, 2017 | by Iqtidar Ali
Elon Musk announced on Twitter that Tesla Model 3 Smart Air Suspension will be coming in the next 6 months or so and the release of this feature is linked to the availability of the dual motor configuration.
Both Model 3 Standard and Long-Range versions currently in production queue have the basic coil-suspension with twin-tube shock absorbers (comparison video of both suspension types at the end of the article).
Let’s look at Elon Musk’s tweet from about an hour ago.
Tesla’s proprietary Smart Air Suspension offers the owner to customize the feel of the suspension according to their taste and road conditions. Smart Air Suspension can be customized via settings available on the center-screen.
Tesla describes Smart Air Suspension in these words:
Much more than a great ride and handling package, the Smart Air Suspension combines automatic advantages with on-demand features. As Model S accelerates, it lowers the vehicle for optimized aerodynamics and increased range. Use the touchscreen to raise or lower Model S when traversing thick snow or pulling into steep driveways.
From the sound of Elon Musk’s tweet it looks like that the air suspension will only be available with the All-Wheel-Drive (dual motor) Tesla Model 3 configuration.
Earlier this year Tesla included the advanced air suspension in base price for all Model S and X vehicles, single motor and dual motors alike but previously it costed as a separate option for additional $3,000.
If the air suspension is tied to the dual motor config, this is going to increase the Model 3 price in two ways — one for the dual motor and additional cost for the Smart Air Suspension. Ultimately Tesla will make air suspension available for both single and dual motor versions but at a time when they have crossed much of the ‘production hell’ — which is unlikely to happen before 2019.
Comparing Coil Suspension and the Smart Air Suspension
While looking for more information on the web for Tesla’s Smart Air Suspension I came across a few resources that will help you decide which suspension is best for you, if you want the advanced suspension or stick with the traditional coil suspension with shock absorbers. This thread on the Tesla Motors Club has some great info and first hand experiences of the air suspension that can help.
Also DÆrik from Tesla Inventory tested two Model S cars side by side (video below) to evaluate the differences between the two suspension types, I think this video will further help you decide if you want to spend a couple thousand dollars extra or not.