One of Tesla’s most minor Model 3 updates proves Elon Musk’s long game—and how skeptics miss the point

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By Simon Alvarez

Posted on November 22, 2020

Back when the Model 3 was unveiled, Tesla immediately attracted a good amount of criticism over the vehicle’s design. Arguments against the all-electric sedan were many, with arguments being presented against its utilization of a single 15” center display and its hyper-minimalistic interior. The vehicle’s glovebox, which could only be opened through the touchscreen, also attracted its own fair share of eyebrows. 

‘Crazy’ and ‘Impractical’ Ideas

To a good number of car enthusiasts, the idea of a glovebox that can’t even be opened manually was insane. Practically all vehicles in the market, from affordable econoboxes from Japan to luxury cars from Germany employ a manual latch for the glovebox, after all. It was something that was so simple, so traditional, and here Tesla was stubbornly refusing to follow along. 

It would be pretty easy to put a manual latch on the glovebox, so Tesla’s insistence on an electronically-operated mechanism seemed almost like hubris on the EV maker’s part. Tesla did roll out changes to the Model 3’s glovebox, such as a feature that automatically opens the storage area in the event of a crash. This was rolled out following an incident …

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