The elevated, off-road-capable Tesla Model 3 you’ve been dreaming of for years is finally assembled! Well, you’ve probably never thought of a Model 3 sedan with thick tires and a 12,000-pound winch hanging from the rather boring front end of the front, and no, we’re not talking about the Model Y, Tesla’s Model Y SUV of similar size. Instead, this is an entirely original creation from the skilled minds of YouTube creators Grind Hard Plumbing and Tesla savior Rich Rebuilds and Electrified Garage.
If you haven’t followed her YouTube channel, Grind Hard Plumbing has absolutely nothing to do with guiding you through clogged drains or custom towels. What it offers instead is an interesting look at some of the off-the-wall creations from an E36 BMW converted into a rally truck, a Power Wheels Barbie dirt bike car, and even a Toyota-2JZ swap lawn mower.
Rich Rebuilds made his way to YouTube about five years ago and did the unthinkable – trying to fix his own Tesla. He’s documented the process of picking out different parts of a car, coming up with repairs, and has since moved on to more, including several custom projects, and most recently, this cross-channel collaboration with Grind Hard Plumbing.
The guys at Grind Hard set out to build a Tesla capable of off-road driving, or at least tried to do it, and there aren’t many people with as much knowledge and experience in demolishing and rebuilding Teslas as Rich Rebuilds and his crew in an electrified garage. Rich had already purchased a wrecked and decommissioned Model 3, brought it to Electrified and was able to get it working in no time.
rugged face lift
Instead of replacing the badly damaged front end of the Donor 3, it was bent badly and welded into a set of bumper bars in place of the original bumper beam and plastic cover, moving the radiators to the upper support section, and positioning them on their backs, like a reverse V-mount setup. Rather than buying replacement headlights, they chose to install three incredibly bright LEDs, one of which includes a turn signal and stops the LED light blast so that the blinkers are visible during use.
As you might imagine, the parts racks aren’t overflowing with Tesla’s off-road suspension—certainly not for the brand’s cars—so the group opted to use custom spacers that fit each strut to add a few inches of lift, while maintaining factory spring travel. With the Tesla’s upper control arms so close to the inside of the factory wheel and tire assembly, Grind Hard stacked three half-inch wheel spacers (something you should never do) in order to get the extra 2.5 inches of clearance.
New wheels were then brought in Falken’s Wildpeak all-terrain tires, giving a longer, more aggressive look and enough room in and out of the wheel wells. Later, fortunately, the stacked spacers were eliminated for a one-piece version.
Expansion of fresh electric air
Finally, to get extra airflow into the radiators and add a silliness to the Model 3’s front end, part of the hood’s outer casing was cut out, revealing the hexagonal chassis underneath, and a splash of flat black was added for effect. Needless to say, there are none of those hardcores in today’s Tesla lineup; Soon, the Cybertruck may offer some solidity, but it’s delayed until next year.
Back on Earth, the Tesla car looked the part and the group decided to put it to a preliminary test. Instead of the expected “full submit” attitude on YouTube, the builders took a somewhat measured approach to some rough terrain to make sure the car was up to the challenge. Unlike an off-road or jeep-ready truck, the entry angle is slightly different, and the factory Tesla’s suspension isn’t ideal for significantly uneven surfaces, but the crew found some success. It suffices, in fact, to add a “Nice Jeep … Peasants” sticker to the rear window as a shout out to Jeep and Tesla owners who sometimes seem to carry an air of vanity in their communities; This creation just happens to stir them up in one bowl.
If you want to get out of the custom designs and look at folks who enjoy creating something totally unique, both channels are worth a watch for this Tesla project that has a lot in store.
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