While it is worth ruminating if Nissan can keep up with Tesla in semi-autonomous driving, an equally important point of comparison between the second-gen Nissan Leaf and 2017 Tesla Model 3 is between their respective interior designs.

The cockpit designs for both vehicles have not yet been finalized, but from what we can see so far there are clues as to what we’ll be getting at the end of the day.

In the Leaf prototype that Nissan’s ProPilot system was demonstrated, a lot of features remain unchanged from the 2016 model of the hatch.

However, the instrument cluster and steering wheel are different. It may still sport three spokes, but the helm of the Leaf looks way more refined than before. Right in front of the driver the screen that displays the 360-degree camera view of the ProPilot system, flanked by two digital gauges.

Nissan Leaf ProPilot prototype interior

Nissan Leaf ProPilot prototype dashboard

The Model 3 on the other hand goes for a cockpit design so minimal and simple Apple would be proud. Save for two cup holders at the center console, there is absolutely nothing on on the dashboard save for an instrument cluster and a 17-inch touchscreen display mounted right at the center.

Folks could be forgiven for thinking that that is merely the prototype design that is going to be significantly refurbished for the final model. But according to Tesla, what we’re seeing is actually pretty close to the production model.

Tesla Model 3 dashboard

Tesla Model 3 dashboard

Staff Reporter

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1 Comment

Brian C. · May 31, 2016 at 2:59 pm

What were you looking at during the Model 3 debut??? What was shown at the Model 3 debut was a car with no instrument cluster in front of the driver. And the touchscreen was NOT 17 inches, it was a 15 inch horizontally mounted screen. The info in your article is either wrong or you have gotten updated insider info from a Tesla employee. Which is it?

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