Airways U5 vs. Tesla Model 3
Jul 21,2022 | Chloe Lacour
The Aiways U5 is currently the only available model from Aiways until the Aiways U6 will be available for purchase soon. The U5 is a value-oriented SUV/crossover that tries to offer a thorough and serviceable EV experience at a price point that's not too common in the EV market.
On the other hand, the Tesla Model 3 is arguably the best Tesla model you can buy because it balances price and usability much better than the Model S or Model Y, which hasn't proven itself to any significant extent yet.
The Tesla Model S is available in a variety of trim levels, starting with the standard model, the endurance model, and the performance model. The Aiways U5 is offered in two trim levels, the standard model and the premium model, and the only difference between the two is the equipment list.
The Tesla Model 3 offers more range, more technology, is more popular, faster, more economical, more comfortable, and more expensive. The U5 offers more space, costs less money, isn't nearly as desirable, and lacks character as far as the driving experience is concerned.
The Tesla Model 3 – The best current Tesla model
The Tesla Model 3 costs more than the Aiways, so everyone expects it to offer more of everything, which it actually does. The standard Tesla Model 3 offers an EPA-rated range of 263 miles, the Long Range model offers an EPA-rated range of 353 miles, and the Performance model offers an EPA-rated range of 315 miles on a full charge.
Of these three models, most people choose the standard range model because it offers enough range for most people while costing much less than the performance or long-range models. However, the best variant of the Tesla Model 3 is the Performance model, as it offers all-wheel drive and Porsche 911-level performance.
The biggest advantage a Tesla has over other electric car brands is its ability to use Tesla's Supercharger network. Compared to the U5, the Model 3 is much more exciting to drive and at the same time more demanding.
The Model 3 offers better passive and active safety features, and the overall build quality of the Model 3 is better. All in all, the Model 3 is definitely the better car.
Airways U5 – A cheap alternative
The Aiways U5 costs up to 40% less than the Model 3 in certain configurations, which is a clear advantage. However, the price difference is evident in so many areas, especially when it comes to refinement, comfort, performance, and security.
The Aiways U5 is positioned as a budget SUV/crossover EV aimed at catering to the lower end of the EV market, while the Model 3 aims to become the BMW 3 Series of the EV world. The U5 is available in either Standard or Premium trim and the only notable difference between the two is the equipment list.
All Aiways models offer a range of around 250 WLTP kilometers, which is sufficient for most people out there. The Aiways surpasses Tesla in terms of space and value. Also, the Aiways is an SUV, but it doesn't have an all-wheel drive.
The space in the back seats is far superior to the U5. So if you plan on transporting people in the back seat, the U5 is a better choice.
Tesla Model 3 vs. Aiways U5 Charging and Technology
Most people who buy electric cars are primarily interested in factors such as range, charging, and technology, so it is only right to shed some light on these aspects. The Tesla Model 3 is equipped with either a 50 kWh battery for the standard model, a 73 kWh battery for the performance model, or an 82 kWh battery for the long-distance model.
It takes about 22 minutes to charge the Tesla Model 3's 73kWh battery from 0% to 80%, while the 63kWh Aiways battery goes from 0% to 80% in about 45 minutes. Plugging both models into a regular outlet, the Tesla reaches 80% charge in about 7 hours, while the U5 reaches 80% in 10 hours.
Energy costs per 60 miles are almost identical on both, which means they're almost identical when it comes to efficiency. Another key differentiator between the two is autonomous driving, with the Model 3 offering autopilot, while the Aiways U5 offers more standard adaptive cruise control.
The U5 has most of the 21st-century tech features plus some innovations like the camera system that monitors your every move. However, these are not nearly as advanced and effective as the Model 3's systems.
Is it worth buying the Tesla Model 3 versus the Airways U5?
Yes, it's worth it. Most people who buy the Model 3 don't even look at the U5, while most people who buy the U5 tend to compare it to the Model 3. The Model 3 is simply the better all-around product because it has a multitude of advantages over the U5, so many that those advantages can easily justify the price increase necessary to buy the Model 3.
The U5 is a decent EV that should satisfy the needs of 80% of EV buyers. However, if you want the best and most popular, you should go for the Model 3, even if it costs more.
Is the Airways U5 safer than the Tesla Model 3?
Given that the U5 is a crossover/SUV, you'd expect it to be safer than the Model 3, but that's just not the case. One of U5's biggest downsides is safety, as Euro NCAP, a leading European crash testing organization gave the U5 a poor 3-star rating.
The Tesla Model 3 fares much better, earning a 5-star top rating, well above that of the U5 in both crash prevention and passive crash safety.
Will Aiways be better than Tesla in the future?
It's hard to say how Tesla and Aiways will compare in the years to come, but Aiways is unlikely to beat Tesla in anything other than price. Aiways tries to sell cheap electric cars for average buyers, while Tesla offers luxury electric cars for enthusiasts.
Therefore, the level of awareness and desirability at Tesla will always be higher. That doesn't mean Aiways makes bad cars, just that they simply can't be compared to Teslas.