When the Tesla Model Y was unveiled last year skepticism quickly grew regarding its seating arrangement. It was neat to watch seven people come out of a Model Y on stage but how usable was the space? How could a third row fit in a slightly larger Model 3?
The Model Y began deliveries quicker than expected with a hoard of them hitting the roads last month. Tesla’s first electric crossover is finally here, but there’s just one catch. The third row variant wont be made available until next year.
Photos of the third row from the unveiling event quickly took over the web. They looked small, tight, and as uncomfortable as could be.
Popular Tesla focused YouTuber, DÆrik, put them to the test. With a spare set of Model X seats he had lying around (as one does) he attempted to install them himself in his new Model Y.
DÆrik noted that due to the Model Y’s flooring (and a potential parts underneath) they would have to attempt their DIY install rear-facing. While Tesla’s display of the third row showcased it traditionally, rear facing seats is nothing new from the company. The Model S was one of the first sedans to offer such a feature. Although now discontinued, the company plans to bring them back with their upcoming Plaid Model S.
Of course, the Model X seats used were just a bit too large to fit comfortably but the two were able to get a good sense of judgement regarding the space. They stated that the current floor board used is plastic and too flimsy to hold too much weight. Tesla would have to swap that part out or risk damages. Using the rear-facing method your legs are also within the Model Y’s crumple zone leaving you liable to injury in an accident. Tesla would also have to reinforce the rear to keep things safe for everyone.
Due to the lack of leg room, both DÆrik and Sandy Munro agree, rear-facing seats just make more sense. The larger Model X is already not known for having the most spacious third row. I remain skeptical on how Tesla will accomplish seven adults seating comfortably in this vehicle, as they stated.