Tesla Model 3 earns perfect 5-star NHTSA safety rating

  • The Tesla Model 3 has a flawless score from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
  • The Model 3 has been widely praised by reviewers and earned high marks for safety from other groups.

The Tesla Model 3 has earned a perfect five-star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

This means all of Tesla's production vehicles have received a perfect rating from the agency. Both the larger Tesla Model S sedan and the Model X sport utility vehicle have received five-star ratings from the agency as well.

The Model 3 electric sedan has received some high safety ratings from other groups as well. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the car a "superior" rating in its front crash prevention test.

The car has been widely praised overall, though it had garnered criticism at different points in its brief history. The widely respected group Consumer Reports had at first held back on recommending the car, saying the vehicle had a stopping distance that fell far short of its peers and was more comparable to that of a full-size pickup truck. Tesla fixed the issue with a software update and Consumer Reports finally did recommend the vehicle.

Tesla also has been criticized for its Autopilot driver assistance system, which has been involved in several high-profile crashes. The NHTSA has opened investigations into some of these incidents.

Much has been said about Tesla's "production hell," as CEO Elon Musk has called it. The company has missed targets by several months as it worked to ramp up production. At the end of the second quarter Tesla said it was repeatedly producing 5,000 Model 3 cars per week, a goal it originally aimed to achieve at the end of 2017. As production improves, the company faces other challenges. Recently Musk said in response to a customer complaint on Twitter that Tesla is now going through "delivery logistics hell."

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