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A-Pillar Misalignment - Serious Issue?

loganthefirst

Member
Jul 4, 2014
101
62
Denver, CO
I recently went to a buddy of mine's delivery here in Colorado and was in the process of doing our inspection of the car to find any paint defects, issues etc., and came across the base of the left A-pillar of the car (passenger side) jutting out. It was substantial enough to warrant a service tech coming over and telling us it was within the limits of their production model but I decided to look around. I went to multiple Model 3's in the delivery room, and outside. VIN's ranged from 5000 to 12,500 but all had the same issue. The right side A-pillar (driver's side) is lined up perfectly. The rubber piece that bridges the gab between the base of the A-pillar and the front quarter panel was lined up perfectly too. The passenger side was not. Wanted to post in here to see if other owners were seeing the same issue on their Model 3's. It's almost as if the frame of the car is a quarter of an inch too skinny...I could just be too picky though so if that's the consensus, just disregard this post, haha!
 

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Zaphod

Galaxy President (former)
Dec 10, 2015
2,160
1,959
Austin, TX
Serious issue? Not sure I would call it that. It's a cosmetic issue, so is bit unsightly and annoying. Tesla hasn't been known to keep good tolerances in assembly and part stamping, so some variability is going to happen unfortunately. That is still an area where Tesla falls behind. I'm picky as well and what is shown in the pictures would not make me happy, but not sure what could be done to make it any better.
 

lapolak

Member
Feb 27, 2018
107
152
Los Angeles
The rubber piece that bridges the gab between the base of the A-pillar and the front quarter panel was lined up perfectly too.

Not an owner, but I just posted a review of a 2700-800 VIN Model 3 I rented on Turo over the weekend. That car had significant seal issues, which owners of more recent models (VIN 10000+) told me they do not see.

BUT... looking at your photos, the seals on the A pillar are also not fit correctly. In fact, it looks like the seals are even cut and aren't connected right by the window. That is concerning...
 

adaptabl

Banned
Mar 13, 2018
776
-619
Canada
Maybe they should fix the current build issues before trying to ramp up production? There is no way they can sell 250,000-500,000 units a year with that type of build quality.
 
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grashelm

Member
Apr 8, 2016
143
138
Florida
I recently went to a buddy of mine's delivery here in Colorado and was in the process of doing our inspection of the car to find any paint defects, issues etc., and came across the base of the left A-pillar of the car (passenger side) jutting out. It was substantial enough to warrant a service tech coming over and telling us it was within the limits of their production model but I decided to look around. I went to multiple Model 3's in the delivery room, and outside. VIN's ranged from 5000 to 12,500 but all had the same issue. The right side A-pillar (driver's side) is lined up perfectly. The rubber piece that bridges the gab between the base of the A-pillar and the front quarter panel was lined up perfectly too. The passenger side was not. Wanted to post in here to see if other owners were seeing the same issue on their Model 3's. It's almost as if the frame of the car is a quarter of an inch too skinny...I could just be too picky though so if that's the consensus, just disregard this post, haha!

Good Lord that's heinous!!!
 
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Stoneymonster

Active Member
Jan 8, 2013
1,787
1,064
Aptos, Ca
Haha, sad but true. Normal, within spec, typical,...for a Tesla. NO OTHER manufacturers would release cars like this. Even a $20,000 Kia has better fit and finish. BUT, the electric drivetrain trumps all, or something like that, Lol.

For what it's worth, I went around a parking lot and looked at a variety of cars recently for just this specific issue (A-pillar alignment). Most were out by some degree or another. Some as bad as the Tesla in this photo (Toyotas, Hondas), some not as bad. A lot of them get away with it by not having the fender directly flush with the A-pillar so it's less noticeable.

Why would I do this you may ask? Because mine are out a bit and wondered how much I should care.
 

dwharrison

Member
Mar 1, 2018
181
167
Ajax ON
Haha, sad but true. Normal, within spec, typical,...for a Tesla. NO OTHER manufacturers would release cars like this. Even a $20,000 Kia has better fit and finish. BUT, the electric drivetrain trumps all, or something like that, Lol.
I just went and looked at my 2011 $20,000 (roughly, in US currency) Kia and it had multiple panel misalignments. None that would be noticeable to anyone not specifically looking for misalignments, but absolutely there and provably so by the fact that they were not consistent between the two sides of the car.

None of which means Tesla doesn't need to do better.
 

adaptabl

Banned
Mar 13, 2018
776
-619
Canada
Sure they can. The only reason they cannot is if they start getting customer pick up rejections and the reason listed is fit and finish.

There are only so many greenies that will buy the car to help save the planet. Soon Tesla will have to sell the car to the mass market and compete against some really good quality ICE cars if they reach the 250,000/year plus figure. That will be a harder sell. The market buying a $50,000 car will not accept the current build quality of Tesla.
 
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Stoneymonster

Active Member
Jan 8, 2013
1,787
1,064
Aptos, Ca
There are only so many greenies that will buy the car to help save the planet. Soon Tesla will have to sell the car to the mass market and compete against some really good quality ICE cars if they reach the 250,000/year plus figure. That will be a harder sell. The market buying a $50,000 car will not accept the current build quality of Tesla.

Uh huh.
 

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