Before this week, I had had the opportunity to drive a friend's Tesla Model 3 for a few minutes. Just enough to see that it was pretty cool, but I've driven other cars that I thought were pretty cool too. Well, skipping the long story as to why, I happened to end up with a Model 3 rental from Turo for the week, and now I understand the hype. This is THE best car I've ever driven, hands down. Of course, it has all of the EV advantages (very low maintenance, cheap "fuel", ultra quiet and smooth) plus all of the Tesla advantages (long range, Supercharger network, over-the-air software updates, safety, no &*()#@$ing dealers to deal with, great styling). But, I knew all that already. That's checking the boxes in a brochure. This thing has something else: FUN!!! There are quite a few preferences you can set on the touchscreen as to how it should drive: Creep on or off (like what an automatic transmission car would do if you let go of the brake), steering Comfort/Standard/Sport, Standard vs "Chill" acceleration, and a bunch of others. Once I got all that dialed in to my liking and spent a few minutes feeling it out to get over my "oh crap I don't want to mess up this car" jitters, it just got plain fun. It's a lot like flying a really well-harmonized airplane like a DA40 or P-51. You just "think" it in whatever direction you want, and it just does exactly what you tell it to, instantaneously and without complaint. No waiting for the engine to rev up to where it has a reasonable amount of power (or worse, wait for turbos to spool up!), no slop in the steering whatsoever, no noise and no smells. As I write this, I'm finding it hard to find the right words to describe how it feels to drive. It accelerates effortlessly, it corners with no body roll at all, the view is great with the all-glass roof, and having the speedometer where it is on the giant center screen didn't even take any getting used to at all. (@SCCutler, take note.) The controls are minimalist: Window controls, one stalk on each side of the wheel with a button in the end of each, two thumbwheels on the wheel, a button for the hazards and the reading lights. Oh, and that giant center touchscreen. But, in actual usage, it feels like they have EXACTLY the right number of controls, no more, no less. There's a lot of automation: Auto wipers, auto headlights (including auto high beams), automatic on/off, auto locks, and plenty of other stuff. I didn't feel like I had to interact with the systems of the car at all - It just did a bunch of things for me that I've always had to do myself before, and it did them all exactly as I would have - No adjusting the timing of the wipers and such necessary. I pushed the right-hand thumbwheel to give a voice command, "Navigate To" and rattled off my full home address, which it understood perfectly right away, and routed me to on the big screen with Google Maps' satellite view instead of the chintzy maps that most cars have. And then, with two downward taps on the "gearshift" stalk on the right of the steering wheel, the car drove me home. All I had to do was to acknowledge/approve lane changes by hitting the turn signal (which the car would turn off itself after making the lane change). It would automatically change lanes both to get around slow traffic and to prepare for exits. It took the exits automatically, putting the turn signal on itself there too. Off the highway, Autopilot still works but it doesn't recognize stop signs, lights, etc yet or make turns from one street to another. It's basically a combination of traffic-aware cruise control and autosteer that keeps you in your lane (unless you command a lane change by putting on your turn signal on a multi-lane road). It's been just over a year since I rented an Autopilot-equipped Model X, and the amount of improvement they've made there is astounding. At that point, it was OK on a divided highway, but it was getting messed up by the shadows of power lines cast on the road and weaving back and forth. Now, on the highway it drives a lot more like a chauffeur and a lot less like a drunken teenager. Our weather has been pretty awful this week, and I've driven it in rain and snow, and both of those at night, and hardly any daytime dry pavement. Autopilot did very well in poor conditions most of the time - The only trouble it had was in moderate rain with a lot of traffic and lights all around, I think it freaked out about a reflection or something but it did try to swerve a couple of times. Overall, though, even in those conditions it drove at least as well as I could have, with those couple of exceptions over probably 200 miles or so like that. And tonight, in driving snow that was blowing across the roadway, it did just fine. The even cooler thing I noticed tonight: It's learning! On the 2-lane state highway that leads from the Interstate to the entrance to my neighborhood (about a 12-mile stretch), it was getting confused by the turn-bypass lanes (where the road briefly widens to allow you to get past someone turning left), and it was staying in the middle of the widened lane and then making a quick "correction" into the bypass lane even though nobody was turning left. The first time I drove that stretch, I just cut it off. But a couple nights ago, I decided to put it in autopilot, and every time it came to one of those lanes I would grab the wheel and overpower it when it started to try staying centered between the lines, and then re-engaging it right away. Tonight, I engaged autopilot and let it go, and it followed the path I followed the other night with no cutoffs at all. Cool!!! I have to take it back tomorrow. I'm going to be buying one as soon as I can. This really is the future of transportation. Wow.