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The Mirai’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Model 3 doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
For enhanced safety, the front shoulder belts of the Toyota Mirai are height-adjustable, and the rear seat shoulder belts have child comfort guides to move the belt to properly fit children. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages children to buckle up. The Tesla Model 3 has only front height-adjustable seat belts.
To help make backing safer, the Mirai’s cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The Model 3 doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.
The Mirai’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Model 3 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
The Mirai has standard Safety Connect™, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Model 3 doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.
Both the Mirai and the Model 3 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front and rear seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rearview cameras.
Toyota’s powertrain warranty covers the Mirai 2 years longer than Tesla covers the Model 3. Any repair needed on the motor, fuel cell, transmission, axles or joints is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the Model 3 ends after only 8 years.
The Mirai’s corrosion warranty is 1 year and unlimited miles longer than the Model 3’s (5/unlimited vs. 4/50,000).
Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Mirai for 3 years and 35000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Tesla doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Model 3.
There are almost 20 times as many Toyota dealers as there are Tesla dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Mirai’s warranty.
A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Mirai’s reliability 21 points higher than the Model 3.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Tesla vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. Tesla is ranked 27th.
The Mirai’s maximum driving range in pure electric mode is 312 miles, 41% further than the Model 3’s standard 220-mile range and 2 miles further than the Model 3 Long Range’s 310-mile range. After it exhausts its hydrogen, the Mirai can refuel in minutes at a hydrogen dueling station, while the Model 3 has to recharge for 8 hours and 30 minutes for only a 45% charge at a specially configured quick charge station not available in most areas.
In an emergency stopping situation, many drivers don’t press the brakes with enough force to stop the vehicle in the shortest distance. The Mirai has a standard brake assist system to detect emergency braking situations (by how hard and how quickly the brake pedal is pressed) and then automatically apply maximum braking immediately in order to help prevent a collision. The Model 3 doesn’t offer a brake assist feature.
For better maneuverability, the Mirai’s turning circle is .7 feet tighter than the Model 3’s (37.4 feet vs. 38.1 feet).
As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the Mirai is quieter than the Model 3:
70 MPH Cruising
With its sedan body style, valet key and remote trunk release lockout, the Mirai offers cargo security. The Model 3’s non-lockable folding seat defeats cargo security.
The Mirai’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. An easy entry system costs extra on the Model 3.
On a hot day the Mirai’s driver can lower all the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Model 3 can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
The Mirai’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Model 3’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.
The Mirai’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Tesla charges extra for heated mirrors on the Model 3.
The Mirai’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The Model 3’s power mirror controls are embedded in the infotainment system, seriously distracting drivers who have to adjust them while driving.
On extremely cold winter days, the Mirai’s standard heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The Model 3 doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.
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