With the addition of the Model Y Standard Range variant, would-be owners are questioning which version is right for them. Let’s break down the key differences in Tesla’s popular compact SUV configuration. What makes the most sense for your application and needs?
UPDATE: Tesla Updaes the Model Y Standard Range!
In February 2021, Tesla cancelled the Standard Range variant and then quietly brought it back in early 2023. The new Tesla Model Y Standard Range
- Built at the Texas Gigafactory in Austin Only
- Built with Gigacastings and 4680 battery pack
- All Wheel Drive (AWD)
- Range of 279 mi. (or 269 mi. with turbine wheels)
- Previous Tesla Model Y Standard Range was much cheaper with less range and RWD only.
- Currently only available as inventory cars and not an option on Tesla’s site. With Tesla though, this can always change.
The rest of this post is based off of the original Tesla Model Y Standard Range version. The principles are still the same in the decision factors however make sure to check out Tesla’s official site for the latest specs on range and price before making up your minfd.
First up on this list of differences between the Model Y Standard Range and Long Range is, of course, how far you can drive it on a single charge. It should come as no surprise that the most significant difference is the range. I mean, it’s right there in the name.
The Model Y Standard Range is rated for 393 km (244 miles) and the Long Range gets a whopping 525 km (326 miles). This, of course, is under perfect driving conditions. Factors such as speed, elevation, and weather all play a role in actuals. That said, depending on your situation and needs, this may not be a factor for you.
If your main need is for a daily commuter, the Tesla Model Y Standard Range is a great choice. Chances are your vehicle will be charged at home every night and range only comes into play on road trips. The added range will make your trips quicker in that you won’t need to stop and charge as frequently. That said, the difference really isn’t that much. As I found on my cross-Canada trip in my Long Range Model Y I would stop around the 300 km mark most days. Still, the added range is a nice buffer and worth the price difference for me.
RWD vs. AWD
The other major difference between the Model Y Standard Range and Long Range is the fact that the Standard Range is rear-wheel drive and the long-range is all-wheel drive. Again, depending on where you live and what your needs are, this is may not be a factor.
All-wheel drive is very much a good thing to have in locations where winter driving conditions come into play. Since all for tires are powered, traction much better. If you strictly drive in warm climates and stick to the cities and highways, AWD is overkill.
That said, the AWD does offer quicker acceleration (0-100 km/h in 5.0 seconds vs 5.6). This is actually pretty significant. Still, the RWD model still has more than enough pep for your day-to-day drive.
Although I live in Vancouver and only see a couple of days of snow a year, AWD is a must to leave the city.
Model Y Standard Range vs Long Range Cost
Beyond the added range and all-wheel drive, the Long Range version is no different than the Model Y Standard Range. They both have the exact same interior fit-up and overall dimensions. So if you are on the fence, the difference comes down to price.
The base model for the Model Y Standard Range is $56,290 CAD ( $39,990 USD) and the Long Range is $69,990 ($49,990 USD). The difference, depending on your situation, is a lot for an extra 132 km in range and AWD.
*The Standard Range model received a US price drop of $2,000 making the choice a little harder/easier.
That said, in the EV world, the more range the better, especially if you are thinking about resale. With battery technology getting better and better, the value of lower range vehicles are sure to drop over time. Keep this in mind.
So, Which Model Y Version Is for You?
At the end of the day, the decision between the Model Y Standard Range and Long Range comes down to your intended use and where you are located. If you are a city commuter in warm climates, chances are you will be very happy with the Model Y Standard Range. You will need to stop a little bit more on any extensive road trip and won’t have the added traction for winter conditions however you will be just fine commuting around town.
If you are like me and want to take your Model Y on cross-country road trips, the Long Range is a no-brainer. Add to that the fact that you also get AWD and your resale should be better, and the price difference is more than worth it.
David ButtFebruary 19, 2021 at 4:12 pm
“ Although I live in Vancouver and only see a couple of days of snow a year, AWD is a must to leave the city.”
You should take the time to learn how to drive in winter conditions. An immense number of two wheel drive vehicles are safely used in parts of the country with snow covered roads. AWD is not a necessity, and may cause you to be overconfident, overdriving your tires.