The ONLY Guide To Tesla Model 3 Steering Wheel You’ll Ever Need

By Muhammad Hassan •  Updated: 11/20/21 •  14 min read

This ultimate guide will walk you through the nuts and bolts of the Model 3’s steering wheel, along with some valuable suggestions to improve your experience as a Model 3 owner.

I went through 100+ forum posts to see what bugged Model 3 owners and what needs to be addressed about the steering wheel of the Model 3.

After a whole lot of research (and a really painful stiff neck), I present you with this ultimate guide. 

I’ve included every necessary steering wheel-related information a Model 3 owner must know: controls, features, accessories, and much more.

Let’s dig into it.

Tesla Model 3 Steering Wheel Controls

First thing first, let’s discuss all of the commands you can control from your steering wheel in detail.

To my surprise, not many owners were aware of the power these scroll buttons have over the car.

Give this section a read and unfold all the wonders you can do with those high-tech buttons on your steering wheel.

Left Scroll Button

  1. Adjust the Side Mirrors
    1. Tap “Settings” on the multimedia screen.
    2. Tap “Mirrors” under Quick Controls.
    3. Scroll the left button up and down or side to side to adjust the mirrors in the desired direction.
    4. The left mirror will be selected by default, but if you want to adjust the right mirror, select the “Right Mirror” option from the screen.
  2. Adjust the Steering Wheel
    1. Again, tap “Settings” on the multimedia screen.
    2. Tap “Steering Wheel” under Quick Controls.
    3. Scroll the left button up to raise the steering wheel or down to move the steering wheel in the downward direction.
    4. Similarly, if you push the button to the left, the steering wheel will move toward you, and if you push it to the right, it will move away from you.
  3. Adjust Volume or Change the Track
    1. While listening to music or podcasts, just scroll the left button up or down to adjust the volume.
    2. If you’re listening to a playlist, click the button to the right to go to the next track or left to go to the previous track.
  4. Adjust the Headlights
    1. Move the scroll button up or down to adjust the beam in the vertical direction. Note: This will only work if you’ve bought the premium package. 

Right Scroll Button

  1. Adjust the Speed and Distance from the Following Car
    1. While in cruise control, scrolling the button up or down will increase or decrease the speed by 1 mi/h or 1 km/h.
    2. If you swiftly flick the button up or down, you’ll get a 5 mi/h or 5 km/h increase or decrease in speed.
    3. Clicking the button right or left will increase or decrease the distance from the car you’re approaching.
  2. Voice Command
    1. Pushing and holding the right scroll button will activate the voice assistant. Once activated, you can ask it to do anything.

Right + Left Scroll Buttons

Pressing the right and left scroll buttons at the same time will reboot the media center of the Model 3. And if you press the brake along with the buttons, it’ll reset the whole car.

Is Tesla Model 3 Has Heated Steering Wheel Standard?

Customers with the refreshed Model 3 version (2021) have reported that their cars are equipped with a heated steering wheel feature.

However, this feature is only available in Long Range or Performance models. For the Standard Range trim, you’ll have to get a software upgrade worth $300.

To know how to enable the heated steering wheel feature, go through the following short clip by the Patao Family YouTube channel:

Skip to 0:41 to see the exact interface.

Want to know more interesting facts about this feature? I encourage you to read this article.

Tesla Model 3 Power Steering: What It is — And Why Should You Care?

Power steering is one of those features that make the driving experience effortless. 

As you’d expect for an electric vehicle with the latest in tech, the Tesla Model 3 is equipped with an electric power-assisted steering system.

This system senses your effort on the steering wheel and adds an additional force of its own in the same direction.

In terms of specs, the  Model 3 was built with a 10:1 power steering ratio — which means you turn the steering wheel 1 degree and the wheels and tires rotate 10.

Separate power lines taken straight from the vehicle’s high-voltage battery provide full redundancy for the power steering. 

Two electrical modules and two inverters provide “hot backup” to the system if one fails, according to the experts.

So your steering will be painless at all times.

Best Aftermarket Steering Wheels for the Model 3

Let’s talk aesthetics.

What if the OEM steering wheel doesn’t tickle your fancy?

If that’s the case, I’m sure one of the following 3 products will fit your needs.

A specific brand stood out among all for its seamless shopping experience, quick delivery, and outstanding quality.

Best Carbon Fiber Steering Wheel:


most rated tesla model 3 carbon fiber steering wheel

This luxurious and elegant steering wheel will get you plenty of compliments for a deal of a price.

It’s one of the few steering wheels within Amazon with a decent number of reviews.

Customers receive their packages in as little as 2 days — while competitors can take 4-6 weeks to ship their steering wheels.

If you want a handsome carbon fiber steering wheel without breaking the bank (or waiting for months), this is the one you need.

It isn’t the most innovative design by any means — and unfortunately, you can’t customize every detail like other products.

But with all the tools you’ll need to replace your steering wheel in 30 minutes —

And with customers go as far as saying it improves the driving experience,

This product is certainly worth the investment.

Check out the latest price. It’s very competitive with other products — and you can have it on your hands in days.


Fits: all Model 3 / Y years and trims.

✅ Competitively priced
✅ Fastest shipping, potentially same day
✅ Comes with all installation tools
✅ Available in black and white to match the interior


❌ Not a customizable design

Runner-Up Tesla Model 3 Carbon Fiber Steering Wheel:


Tesla Model 3 Carbon Fiber Steering Wheel by RPMTesla

Due to its higher price, confusing logistics (explained below), and 4- to 6-week shipping time,

RPMTesla would be my second choice.

Design is similar but you get to customize the finish (glossy vs. matte) — and unlike SUMK, the leather isn’t perforated which may fit your tastes better.

The installation instructions are super helpful as usual.

(Even if purchase from a different brand, you’ll always benefit from watching RPM’s installation videos.)

Installation starts at 1:09.

To potentially skip the line, keep in mind that they rotate 50 steering wheels.

Give them a call to see if they have the Tesla Model 3 carbon fiber steering wheel you’re looking for in stock.

Oh, and don’t let the price scare you.

You should also see 20% discount once you add the steering wheel to the cart, which lowers the price below $1,000 USD.

Jumping through these hoops makes the buying experience somewhat confusing.

But given how happy Tesla owners have been according to their own forum comments, this steering wheel is worth a shot.


Fits: all Model 3 / Y years and trims.

✅ 1,000+ products sold.
✅ Many word-of-mouth recommendations on Tesla forums.
✅ Comes with all installation tools
✅ Detailed installation instructions


❌ Higher price
❌ Confusing purchasing experience
❌ Long shipping time

Premium Pick:

Real Carbontastic

If you’re into racing modifications or want a fully-personalized carbon fiber steering wheel, you’ll love Real Carbontastic products.

Their design with more accentuated curves looks much more aggressive.

Here’s just an example of a personalized steering wheel:

Aggresive Tesla Model 3 Carbon Fiber Steering Wheel
White top stripe, Alcantara grip material, and glossy carbon fiber button & Y trims.

You have plenty of choices to personalize further:

You can even have colored carbon fiber and a personalized logo by request.

There’s a caveat, though:

The more you customize, the less likely is that their 15-day return guarantee will apply to you.

Also, at this price point, I’d also expect some installation tools. It’s a shame they don’t include any.

Despite this, they’re still one of the top carbon fiber steering wheel sellers among Tesla owners and premium automotive brands like BMW, Mercedes, and Audi.


Fits: all Model 3 / Y years and trims.

✅ Extremely customizable design
✅ Record of quality among premium car owners


❌ Very expensive
❌ Long shipping time
❌ No installation tools included

DIY Steps to Install/Uninstall the Model 3 Steering Wheel

It’s quite a straightforward project for which no professional help is needed. Even an amateur Model 3 owner can do it if the procedure is followed properly.

Let’s start with the tools needed for this job:


Perry from the Tesla DIY YouTube channel perfectly explained the whole procedure of removing/installing the Model 3 steering wheel.

The whole procedure, from start to the final result, shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes. Check out the video:

The process starts @ 2:20.

Key Takeaways:

Don’t Do What This Owner Did…

Alright, so I made a major **** up when attempting to swap the stock steering wheel on my model 3 for a custom 3rd party wheel.

Here’s my situation:
I removed and unplugged the steering wheel airbag, then unscrewed the bolt holding the steering wheel on.
I forgot to detach the other plug behind the steering wheel airbag before pulling it off, so when I pulled the wheel off, I popped off a cover that contains the ribbon cables and shield for the steering wheel plugs.
All the ribbon cables spilled out and I am unable to figure out how to get them back in there neatly.
It does not appear there is any damage to the cables, they did not rip or anything, and the pins were not bent or damaged – it’s just a matter of recoiling them neatly so I can place the cover back over them.

Messed-up clock springemersonemerson

Now, God forbid, if you find yourself in a similar situation, prepare to pay at least $500 to Tesla to replace this part as there’s no other solution that can undo this mistake.

Leather vs Carbon Fiber: Which Material Is Better?

Leather, though attractive, can be a real pain in the neck. It’s highly prone to wear and tear and thus requires extra maintenance and precaution.

Almost 90% of Model 3 owners struggle with leather steering wheels. Here’s an owner’s steering wheel coming apart after a year:

Tesla Model 3 Steering Wheel
Messed up, right? mhanauer

The only way to keep it intact is to invest in quality steering wheel covers. Though it’s not a bad choice, most Tesla owners prefer the raw look.

Considering all the hassle leather steering wheels require, I recommend you to avoid it and instead consider investing in a carbon fiber steering wheel.

For starters, it is a highly durable material. It looks awesome and provides a good hand grip, and above all, there’s no need for constant maintenance.

In 2019, fulfilling prior promises, Tesla made the Model 3’s interior 100% leather-free.

To summarize, only invest in a leather steering wheel if you’re really into leather material. Otherwise, stick with carbon fiber; it’s a way better choice.

How to Protect Your Model 3 Steering Wheel from Wear

This question gets asked a lot, especially by owners with a leather steering wheel.

This is indeed a valid concern, and the solution is quite straightforward: wraps and/or covers.

Wraps and covers for the Model 3 are quite popular in the Tesla community; many owners are already using them.

Below are the best wraps and covers for the Model 3 steering wheel available today.

Best Tesla Model 3 Steering Wheel Wrap:

EV Wraps

Available in 6 colors

Best Tesla Model 3 Steering Wheel Wrap by EV Warps

Make your interior feel more luxurious and protect your original steering wheel trims with this wrap.

Cutouts are precise. The installation is a 5-min breeze. And the availability of colors is interesting, particularly the white carbon fiber and the brushed metallic.

If you want to give a personalized touch to your interior without breaking the bank, this is the way to go.

Some customers have experienced adhesion issues where the wrap peels off prematurely.

Others say “it looks cheap.”

But these complaints are few and far between.

More than 90% of reviewers have rated the product 4 stars or more.

YouTubers have nothing but good things to say about it.

Great installation tips @2:19 to 3:59.

On top of that, the company offers great customer support, sending over 2 pieces of the left side so you can practice —

And potentially shipping extra pieces by request.

Being a sticker,  the thin layer won’t interfere with your button as much as a solid piece of plastic would.

With the lasting nature of 3M vinyl and this great price, this is an upgrade you’ll never regret.


Fits: all Model 3 / Y years and trims.

✅ Automotive-grade 3M 2080 vinyl
✅ Easy to install
✅ Perfect fit
✅ Thin layer. No interference with buttons.


❌ May peel off prematurely
❌ No logo wrap

Best Tesla Model 3 Steering Wheel Cap:


Available in white and carbon fiber

Tesla Model 3 steering wheel wrap alternative (cover / cap)

This is the type of steering wheel cap that people would never imagine is an aftermarket item.

It just fits to perfection, as if the car came with the product from the factory.

Being a solid cover, not a sticker, you’re less likely to experience the peeling problems wraps tend to have.

At the same time, though, the thicker material may require you to apply more force when using your steering wheel buttons.

Although not available in matte (only gloss) or in different colors, aspeike products feel more premium —

And they offer center console, rear air vents, and side camera covers, conveniently on the same product page.


Fits: all Model 3 / Y years and trims.

✅ OEM look
✅ More durable. No peeling problems.
✅ Easier to install
✅ More premium feel


❌ May hinder the use of the steering wheel buttons
❌ Limited color/finish availability

Premium Leather Cover:

DIY Stitched-On Leather Cover by VXDAS

Due to wear or else, some people want a brand-new steering wheel look.

That’s just not possible through wraps alone as wear starts to show up in the exterior portion of the wheel.

That’s where this stitched-on cover comes in.

Compared to the ugly, conventional steering wheel cover,

This premium cover offers a great look and water/sweat resistance — while making your steering wheel feel new!

Made of cowhide and synthetic leather (just like Model 3 seats), this product outlasts stickers, plastic trims, and conventional covers.

Keep in mind you’ll have to hand-stitch the cover yourself — or ask a family member to lend you a hand.

A new steering wheel with this design could cost up to 4 figures easily.

Looking through those lenses, this cover is an absolute no-brainer. I encourage you to check it out.


Fits: all Model 3 / Y years and trims.

✅ Brand-new look without a replacement
✅ Protects most vulnerable sections
✅ Water and sweat-resistant
✅ Most durable choice


❌ May not come with needle & thread
❌ Requires hand-stitching skills


There are more steering wheel-related accessories, including illegal ones. For the purposes of this guide, the ones described should be enough to protect and improve the look of your steering wheel.

Final Thoughts: Tesla Model 3 Steering Wheel Ultimate Guide

The Tesla Model 3 steering wheel offers way more features than an average owner realizes.

Given a bit of attention, these features can make your life a lot easier while making your driving session more interactive and enjoyable.

I did my best to explain everything there is to know about the Model 3’s steering wheel.

Still, if you’ve any questions or suggestions, feel free to comment them down below and I’ll update the article with any additional information.

Happy driving!

Muhammad Hassan

Engineer by trade and writer by passion, Hassan is an automotive enthusiast who thinks EVs are the future. At TTU, he discusses the coolest features and products Model 3 owners look for -- so they can better experience their cars. In his free time, he enjoys tea, reading, and listening to podcasts.

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