What do our experts think of the 2023 Tesla Model Y? We look at powertrain, interior options, trim levels, and more. Find out our thoughts here.

What’s New for the 2023 Tesla Model Y?

Introduced in 2020, the 2023 Tesla Model Y quickly vaulted to the top of the global EV sales chart thanks to ample cabin space, strong driving range, and reasonable pricing. That pricing has continued to come down with the new-for-2023 base “Model Y All-Wheel-Drive” stickering for under $50,000 thanks to the revised federal EV tax credit structure. Changes from the 2022 Model Y that we review here include the aforementioned new base model that runs on so-called “4680 battery cells”, which have also helped to drive consumer costs down.

2023 Tesla Model Y - tesla.com

2023 Tesla Model Y – tesla.com |  Shop 2023 Tesla Model Y on Carsforsale.com

Body Style

Starting Price

MSRP $49,130





Fuel Economy

129 City / 116 Hwy (MPGe)

Number of Seats


Seats 5 or 7

The Breakdown

Lower pricing

Ample range

Hot rod power

Boring design

One screen to rule them all

No smartphone mirroring

A bland but capable EV

2023 Model Y Specs

Trims & Pricing

Base - $49,130
Long Range - $52,130
Performance - $56,130

2023 Tesla Model Y Powertrain

2023 Tesla Model Y - tesla.com
2023 Tesla Model Y - tesla.com

Tesla doesn’t publish battery or output figures, but we know that every 2023 Model Y has a pair of electric motors powered by an estimated 75-kWh battery pack that spins all four wheels through a single-speed fixed-gear transmission. The automaker does, however, publish acceleration numbers. In base form, the 0-60 mph sprint takes 5.0 seconds with the estimated 380 combined horsepower. Stepping up the similarly powered Long Range model drops that time to 4.8 seconds.

Speed freaks will appreciate the roughly 450 hp Performance variant that has a higher top speed of 155 mph and can hit 60 mph in 3.5 seconds. That puts the quickest Model Y right in line with the top-spec Ford Mustang Mach-E, which we compare to the Telsa here, from an acceleration perspective. All Model Y’s sit on a fully independent suspension, but the Performance setup sits lower and has thicker brakes than the other two trims.

Like all EVs, the 2023 Tesla Model Y employs regenerative braking to reroute otherwise lost kinetic energy into the batteries, allowing for almost exclusively one-pedal driving.

Towing & Payload

2023 Tesla Model Y - tesla.com
2023 Tesla Model Y - tesla.com

The base 2023 Tesla Model Y can tow 3,500 pounds with caveats. That rating applies to Model Y’s with any of the three available tire sizes and three occupants, or up to five occupants on size 19- or 21-inch wheels. Tow capacity drops to 2,300 pounds on 20-inch wheels with four or five passengers and 2,000 pounds on 19-inch wheels with six or seven occupants. If your Model Y has 20-inch wheels and six or seven passengers, towing is “not permitted”.

2023 Tesla Model Y Battery Range

In base form, the 2023 Tesla Model has a range of 279 miles and a combined fuel efficiency rating of 123 MPGe. Long Range models live up to the name with a 330-mile range and 122 MPGe combined rating. Opting for the Model Y Performance nets a range of 303 miles and a combined efficiency rating of 111 MPGe. Every Model Y can add about 160 miles of driving range in 15 minutes using one of Tesla’s Supercharger stations, a topic you can learn more about here.

Interior, Comfort, & Cargo Space

As part of its sustainability ethos, Tesla uses only a custom-engineered vegan leather-like upholstery in the Model Y. Black is standard though there is an optional white-and-black two-tone design that looks sharp and incredibly kid-unfriendly. Every Model Y has a heated steering wheel and seats – front and back – along with automatic conditioning systems that do away with ripping hot cabins in the summer and frigid interiors in the winter.

Both the base and Performance models of the Y seat five people, but the Long Range variant can stuff two small humans into a third-row bench for an extra $3,000. Fold all the seats flat to open up 72 cubic feet of cargo space or keep the second row upright for 26 cubes of storage. That max figure smokes the Kia EV6, which we look at here, and its 50 cubic foot cargo hold.

The Model Y also has a small front trunk that measures four cubic feet to hold briefcases and the like. And forget about panoramic moonroofs, the entire roof in the Y is made of glass that Tesla notes has embedded UV and infrared protection to avoid roasting occupants on a hot sunny day.

Entertainment & Technology

2023 Tesla Model Y - tesla.com
2023 Tesla Model Y - tesla.com

Along with displaying the speedometer and climate controls, the 15-inch central touchscreen in the 2023 Model Y manages the built-in navigation system, 14-speaker stereo, and Bluetooth smartphone connection as Tesla does not offer Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.

The Model Y also includes a “Toybox” mode when your Model Y is parked which includes a suite of playful features to entertain (or annoy) passengers or passersby.

The Tesla Mobile App enables a robust suite of features including Phone Key functionality, remote climate control, and the ability to summon your car.

Safety Features

Tesla’s well-known Autopilot semi-autonomous driving system is standard on the Model Y. It combines adaptive cruise control and the lane-keeping system to allow for nearly hands-free driving. Other standard driver aids include forward collision mitigation, side collision warning, and blind-spot monitoring.

Tesla touts its safety standards, which is fair as the Model Y earns a Top Safety Pick+ nod from the IIHS and a 5-Star overall award from the NHTSA – both of which are the highest possible ratings.

2023 Tesla Model Y Trims & Pricing

2023 Tesla Model Y Wireless Charging - tesla.com
2023 Tesla Model Y Wireless Charging - tesla.com

Base – $49,130

Technically named the Model Y All-Wheel-Drive, this base trim line comes with 19-inch wheels, LED fog lamps, and side mirrors with power-folding, auto-dimming, and heating functionality. The cabin features HEPA air filtration, dual-zone automatic climate control, and power-adjustable front seats. Wireless charging for two devices is on hand as are four USB ports, a surround-view monitoring system, and a 15-inch touchscreen to control the infotainment and most vehicle systems.

2023 Tesla Model Y 3rd Row Seating - tesla.com
2023 Tesla Model Y 3rd Row Seating - tesla.com

Long Range – $52,130

Long Range Model Ys can be upgraded with 20-inch rims for an extra $2,000 and a third-row seat for $3,000 which is exclusively available on this trim line. That third row comes with a dedicated USB port and like the rest of the lineup, the Long Range model has a 14-speaker stereo system, driver memory settings, and a 30-day trial of premium infotainment connectivity that enables live traffic visualization, video streaming, and Caraoke.

2023 Tesla Model Y Uberturbine Wheels - tesla.com
2023 Tesla Model Y Uberturbine Wheels - tesla.com

Performance – $56,130

Along with serious accelerative abilities, the Model Y Performance has 21-inch “Uberturbine” wheels, a carbon fiber rear spoiler, and sporty aluminum alloy pedals. And as with the other two trim lines, the Performance model can be optioned with Enhanced Autopilot. This $6,000 system adds automatic lane changing, automatic parking, and a summoning system. For $15,000, owners can have the Full Self-Driving computer installed and the promise of true automated driving – maybe.


Tesla’s warranty includes bumper-to-bumper coverage for four years or 50,000 miles, while the battery and drive unit is under warranty for eight years or 120,000 miles. Unlike Hyundai and Toyota, Tesla does not offer any complimentary maintenance.

What we think

2023 Tesla Model Y - tesla.com

2023 Tesla Model Y – tesla.com |  Shop 2023 Tesla Model Y on Carsforsale.com

The 2023 Tesla Model Y does a lot of EV things right – over 300 miles of driving range, the option to enjoy adrenaline-pumping torque on demand, plenty of standard amenities, and solid tech systems. The Long Range model is the sweet spot as it has all the standard lineup content along with a 50-mile range advantage over the base model. That being said, the typical Tesla styling is getting a bit staid in the face of eye-catching competition like the Kia EV6 and Cadillac Lyriq, so be sure to cross-shop before committing.

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Niel Stender

Niel Stender grew up doing replacement work on his 1990 Cherokee and 1989 Starion, so it’s not surprising that he would put his mechanical engineering degree from the University of New Hampshire to use in the car world as a vehicle dynamics engineer. Now engineering sentence structures, his writing infuses his auto experience with his time in marketing and his sales experience. Writing about cars for close to a decade now, he focuses on some of the more technical mechanical systems that are found under the hood and throughout a vehicle.

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