Electric Tech Explored

Does the Tesla Model 3 have a ‘frunk’ or a trunk?

by Brian Griffiths | Updated: April 7th, 2022
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It stands to reason that when you take away all the room you need for the engine and the drive train, you suddenly have a whole lot more space under the bonnet (or hood if you’re from the USA) that you can use for cargo space which can then either be used as a front trunk or a frunk.

In the case of the Tesla Model 3 and all Teslas, for that matter, not only do they have a traditional rear trunk area. They also have a less common storage area under the trunk floor and an even more unusual (for the vehicle category), a front trunk – commonly referred to as a “frunk.”

Was Tesla the first manufacturer to introduce the frunk?

While Tesla might have been the first company to coin the word ‘frunk’ as part of their marketing speak to support the launch of the Tesla Model S in 2012. The ‘frunk’ as a fixture has been around for some considerable time. 

The Volkswagen Beetle had one from its very beginnings back in the ’30s. The Chevrolet Corvair also had one throughout its production run, from 1960 to 1969. Likewise, several Porsche models had one, and so did both the Renault 10 and the Tatra 603.

The frunk – friend to the supercar

Today, along with all of the Tesla model line up, the frunk seems to be very much at home in the world of the ‘supercar’ with the likes of the Porsche 911 4S, the Ferrari 488 Spyder, both the Lamborghini Aventador SVJ and Huracan Evo Spyder along with the McLaren 720 S all having their very own versions of the frunk. However, having said that, when it comes to the McLaren, you really would struggle to fit anything larger than a case of wine in its frunk.  

So what do we know about the frunk in the Tesla Model 3? 

Photo by FotoSleuth licensed under CC BY 2.0

The current frunk size is slightly smaller than the original size of that of the Model 3 when it was first launched in 2018. It is approximately 2.7 cubic feet or 28in wide and 15.5in long with a depth ranging from 8-10 inches on current models. 

This makes it ideal for storing anything with a maximum size of your average carry-on piece of luggage, about 22in x 14 in x 9inches, which is compatible with some larger SUVs.

When it comes to storing or transporting anything in the front frunk of the Model 3, Tesla recommends that you never load more than 55lbs (25kg) as doing so can cause damage. 

How valuable is the frunk on a Tesla Model 3?

They say that beauty often comes in small packages, and the frunk on the Tesla Model 3 is no exception. Being smaller in size than the rear trunk actually has the benefit of not allowing smaller items to annoyingly slide around all over the place while driving, which can be not only distracting but also potentially dangerous.

The frunk is completely sealed and waterproof, offering a safe, dry space to store things. The frunk is plastic lined and is entirely separate from the main cabin and trunk. 

Making it ideal for storing wet or heavily soiled garments, you can throw them in the frunk until you get home and not contaminate the air quality inside the vehicle’s cabin with the odour. 

Likewise, the same can be done with a gym bag and shoes after working out; the frunk is also the perfect place to put pizza and other takeout food, reducing the chances of damaging the interior of the car or the seats.

Several makes of travel strollers can also fit in the ‘frunk’ of the Tesla Model 3, making it the ideal car if you have small children and need all the storage space possible.

How easy is it to open and close the front frunk on the Tesla Model 3?

Like all things, when it comes to a Tesla, opening and closing the frunk on a Model 3 is pretty straightforward. 

For the opening, you have the choice of either touching the associated ‘open’ icon on the main touchscreen, double-clicking the front trunk button on your key fob, or touching the front trunk button in the mobile app.

For closing the frunk, simply lower the hood until the striker touches the latches, place both hands on the front of the hood, and press down firmly to engage the latches. Then carefully try to lift the front edge of the hood to ensure that it is fully closed.

Better to have than not

As mentioned, the frunk offered by the Tesla Model 3 offers storage space that makes it comparable with larger SUVs. But, the front trunk storage situation found in Tesla Model 3 is somewhat uncommon and often overlooked. However, the frunk offers many practical uses, and families with children enjoy the many benefits of having a frunk. 

 Of course, depending on each individual’s situation, some people may use the frunk all the time, and others may never use it. We personally love the frunk and firmly believe it’s better to have it than not.

Photo by Raymond Wambsgans licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0