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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Every hybrid and electric car I have owned or driven (quite a few) has only applied the friction brakes on hard braking or for the last few yards when stopping, using regenerative braking first. I was planning on buying a new or used MS early next year though I had pretty much decided to get a new M3 instead... until I recently learned that Teslas do not engage regenerative braking on pressing the brake pedal. Firstly, is this correct? Secondly how do people find it? I like to drive fast and therefore inefficiently occasionally, but most of the time I like to squeeze as many miles out of every kWh of battery as I can. I am not attracted to the high regen one pedal driving thing as "feathering the throttle" (anachronistic term now I suppose) to coast is difficult to get spot on and you will usually be powering or regenerating by a couple of kWh when you actually want to coast and this is inefficient. I do this in my Volt but what I really like about my Mercedes B250e (Tesla running gear) is that you can turn regen up or down, including to zero, with the paddles on the wheel. I use this a lot and barely use the brake pedal but when I do, it still uses regen. I am keen to hear other people's opinions and experience of this as currently I am rather put off a Tesla because of it. Perhaps I am being a bit precious or too much of a purist and the Tesla system works well? Can you easily adjust regen on the fly? Can you designate one of the manual controls to change it rather than going through the menus on the touch screen?
 

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Yup, you are overthinking this. Have tried various EVs and the Tesla system is by far the best. It is completely instinctive.

Have tried the flappy paddle regen thing and hated it. It seems like a desperate attempt to increase “driver and involvement”, but frankly I get plenty of that through the go pedal, which has an infinite range of regen settings depending where exactly my foot is...
 

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It will take about 5 minutes to get used to the Tesla regen system. It’s easy and seamless and very smooth.

Just think of the brake pedal as being required for the final hold and emergency stops. Everything else is on the throttle or done automatically by the TACC.

Just go on a test drive....
 

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Yep, just drive the car. It is so very simple to use. Anything more complicated would seem crazy to me, now.
 

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And all of the replies were describing User Interface (even though it is a pedal, it is still UI) and not what the OP was asking....

I don't have a Tesla, but had a look at the way regenerative braking works. It definitely uses the motors for regen, even when you use the brake pedal! The mechanical brakes will engage at some point, generally only when stopped or in an emergency.

As far as regen levels are concerned, tesla has only two: Regular (strong regen, similar to one pedal driving) and Low (the deceleration effect is much lower, but not coasting). Some teslas I think have a setting for "creep" as well.
 

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And all of the replies were describing User Interface (even though it is a pedal, it is still UI) and not what the OP was asking....

I don't have a Tesla, but had a look at the way regenerative braking works. It definitely uses the motors for regen, even when you use the brake pedal! The mechanical brakes will engage at some point, generally only when stopped or in an emergency.

As far as regen levels are concerned, tesla has only two: Regular (strong regen, similar to one pedal driving) and Low (the deceleration effect is much lower, but not coasting). Some teslas I think have a setting for "creep" as well.
The friction brakes are applied at all times whenever the brake pedal is pressed; the regen is also harvesting power during this time.
 

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Some teslas I think have a setting for "creep" as well.
All of them since 2013 has had a 'creep' setting - this is not regen related though - this relates to the car acting like a ICE car and when enabled moves a bit forward on it's own if it's in Drive and without a foot on the brake.

True EV'ers of course has this disabled (waits for the attack) :)
 

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And all of the replies were describing User Interface (even though it is a pedal, it is still UI) and not what the OP was asking....

I don't have a Tesla, but had a look at the way regenerative braking works. It definitely uses the motors for regen, even when you use the brake pedal! The mechanical brakes will engage at some point, generally only when stopped or in an emergency.

As far as regen levels are concerned, tesla has only two: Regular (strong regen, similar to one pedal driving) and Low (the deceleration effect is much lower, but not coasting). Some teslas I think have a setting for "creep" as well.
Yes in summary, with a Tesla, you can select Regular or Low regen but as it's in the settings menu it isn't something you'd want to be fiddling with all the time while on the go - so the paddle systems on other cars are better in that respect. However, as pointed out several times above, being able to fiddle with regen levels is probably not going to add much in terms of efficiency, and the simplicity of Tesla's system wins in my opinion.

If you're really keen to coast you have two options: feather the accelerator (which means watching the energy meter) or put the car in neutral. The latter is actually quite easy to do on the S/X as the gear selector is a stalk on the steering column, and I think it's the same on the Model 3. It is hard to match the accelerator with the car speed when coming out of neutral however, so you might undo what little you gained by over-cooking the regen when going back into Drive.

Before my Model S I drove a Prius which used regen for light touches of the brake and mechanical braking when more force was applied. Usually the change-over was pretty seamless but there were occasions when there was a slight gap that gave the sensation of a slight skid (to me something like hitting a drain cover in the wet under braking). Forumites inclined to use more hysterical/emotive language said when the car did this it was "throwing them forwards" or "suddenly accelerating". Anyway the point of this long-winded anecdote is to stress that Tesla's system avoids all this so the braking is extremely consistent and secure feeling.
 

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You cant set a steering wheel control to adjust regen on Model 3.
I too love some inefficient quick driving and love the 3 so far. I have the regen set to Regular and love it. Makes easy work of town driving but actually helps when driving quickly as it reminds me of left foot braking on track days, in as much as when lifting off the throttle, the brakes are instantly applied.
As to whether they are using regen through magnetic resistance or friction braking at any point during the braking process, I couldn’t tell you. I do know it feels right, as others have said and wouldnt want flappy paddle, pretend gear nonsense.
 

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It definitely uses the motors for regen, even when you use the brake pedal! The mechanical brakes will engage at some point, generally only when stopped or in an emergency.
The point that the OP was asking was whether the brake pedal offers "blended" braking.

In a Nissan Leaf or a Toyota/Lexus Hybrid (and most other EV/hybrid cars, but those two are the ones I have direct experience of) then pressing the brake pedal increases the amount of regen being applied at that moment, and applies the friction brakes as well. It uses a combination of friction braking and increased regen to provide a given amount of retardation for pedal pressure and speed. Generally this results in a quite inconsistent and unpredictable pedal feel, with some disconcerting behaviours (slowing gently from 70 to maximise regen in my lexus, the retardation suddenly drops away around 30mph).

In order to get maximum regen from either vehicle then the brake pedal must be pushed - coming off the M62E at J21 there's a downhill slip to a roundabout, and from 70mph in B mode max regen will apply until the speed is down to about 40 and then the regen reduces (down from 4 to 2 bubbles) - pressing the brake pedal gently restores regen to 4 bubbles.

Tesla cars do not behave this way. The brake pedal is ONLY a brake pedal. Its only function is to push fluid through the system to move brake pads onto discs, just like a regular non-hybrid ICE car. Application of the brake pedal does not influence how regen is being applied (other than the brakes reduce the speed which reduces the amount of regen possible - regen is speed dependent and brakes alter the speed).

The difference is in the throttle pedal behaviour - even in strong regen modes, other EVs will apply more regen braking when you press the brake pedal. A Tesla provides full regen if you let your foot off the throttle. A Tesla 3 in "standard" regen provides much more slowing force than a Leaf 24 in "B" mode.

In a Tesla, by the time you have moved your foot to the brake pedal it is already slowing significantly and strongly on max regen because your foot is no longer applying pressure to the throttle.

If you are not, as the OP said

am not attracted to the high regen one pedal driving thing as "feathering the throttle" (anachronistic term now I suppose) to coast is difficult to get spot on
then a Tesla might be difficult for you to get on with. Personally I find that the consistency of brake feel, the consistency of throttle pedal behaviour and regen and not having to faff with putting it into "B" mode all of the time is far more appealing and I simply don't feel the need to mess with it.
 

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But even if you don't like 'feathering the throttle' in other cars it's worth giving the Tesla a test drive. I'm pretty terrible at fine pedal control movements with my right foot, but I find the Model 3 'go' pedal very easy to adjust. Its nicely weighted and has enough travel to allow you to be precise.
 
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