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A Sig Perf reservation holder's take away from the conference call

Discussion in 'Model S' started by pguerra, Jul 28, 2012.

  1. pguerra

    pguerra Member

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    Hi, I'm #1246 here and awaiting delivery.

    I just read every word of the Conference Call that occurred on 25 Jul 2012. Here's my understanding of the conference call and how it relates to my future car and TSLA stock:

    1) Facebook photo postings from my friends that eventually make their way to Consumer Reports (a few of them work there) and will laughably show rear seat plastic cup holders that I buy from WalMart and that hang off the rear seat windows in my new $100k+ car will, unfortunately, likely occur. On the Conference Call, Tesla basically said that 98% of the car is done and that only tiny little supplier issues such as pitting of the chrome plating of the door handles and interior trim details are really the final issues that are being perfected and holding up the ramp up in production.

    In other words, the front seat, middle console that offers no concealed storage and awkward cup holder positioning (have to practically tear my shoulder rotator cuff to get drink) that I saw at the Mahwah, NJ event would seem to be the one that I'm going to be seeing in my future Model S delivery. Obviously, this same front-seat, middle console does not have fold-out cup holders for rear seat passengers like my Prius elegantly addresses.

    Very unfortunate! For my rear seat passengers, it's either going to be cold hands as they are forced to hold their icey, cold drinks in their hands all throughout the drive OR use plastic Walmart window cup holders...

    Oh yeah that removable, rear-seat middle console that I sometimes see photos of is not an option for me b/c it takes up precious passenger space and is a strange solution ...like the third row seat of a 90's Dodge Caravan that has to be user removed to make room. I can already see it now as I take 5 passengers to the next destination ("Hang on...I have to remove the rear-seat middle console so you can fit....oh but wait, now where are you going to put your drinks?").

    2) TSLA has approx 12200 reservation holders. They seem to be managing their cash flow issues well. All this by with a lot of unpaid marketing vs paid marketing. Demand and word of mouth is strong. Good for them and bravo. They are even considering raising cash solely as a cushion against unforeseen economic issues and/or for R&D purposes - and they don't even have to raise cash. It's just a way of decreasing risk further. Nice. I should probably buy TSLA at a low and ride it up a little pending no EU contagion.

    3) Elon is right about the Leaf - Nissan needs to improve on it. For me, this means increasing range. If range had already been increased in the Leaf to EPA 160 miles, I would have purchased it instead of the Model S! BUT acknowledgment of this fact means that Elon really is in touch and has the vision and insight of great CEO b/c he recognizes what the buyers such as myself are thinking. Bravo.

    4) Given that 98% of the Model S is already done, it looks like my Hybrid Escalade stock stereo system will continue to blow away the 580 watt Model S stereo and its weak low-range (bass). In my opinion it doesn't even sound like the Model S has a sub-woofer (at least not near as good as my Hybrid Escalade). Very unfortunate!

    Overall, although I'm excited about the Model S, my enthusiasm is tempered, and I'm pretty disappointed with the Model S lack of "creature conforts" which by reading other message boards recently seems to also mean no sun visor lights nor rear seat reading lights.

    5) If the gov't or Tesla themselves, remove the ability to load up a webpage while driving, I'll be totally anti-Tesla as this would be the last straw. The ability to load up a webpage while driving may sound stupid and dangerous....but not for the passenger riding with me which is what I'm talking about.

    Better start stretching out my rotator cuff now so I can get to my coffee....
     
  2. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    So are you assuming that what we've seen to-date is the '98% done' version? Or is it possible that more work could have been done on the car in the time between the cars produced for the Get Amped tour and the earnings call?

    I have no idea, I have no special insight into what happens at Tesla. It just seems everyone is ready to assume the worst, when sometimes there are other scenarios. But I do know that they've come through for me every time. And there are a lot of other owners who feel the same way.

    Hopefully things will be addressed and you'll be posting a followup in this thread.
     
  3. pguerra

    pguerra Member

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    Good point! Well, they did state in the Conference Call that they have made about 40 vehicles so far which include some for the Get Amped tour. So yes, I think the cars I saw were part of the 98% done. The one I drove did have the open shelf under the screen which I hear is how final production vehicles are going to be.

    Yes, hopefully things will be addressed. The ramp up in production should be occurring around very beginning of Q4 (or end of Q3). So, we'll certainly know from other, lower-number reservation holders first. But plan on more speculation and complete guessing in the message boards prior to the ramp up.

    I still have my hopes up for a car that exceeds my expectations and if not, at least one that I'm happy to drive around without having to go to the gas station ever.
     
  4. Tommy

    Tommy Member

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    #4 Tommy, Jul 28, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2012
    I would be the first to admit that I have been critical of Tesla's interior; however of late I have tempered my remarks and a lot has to do with watching Tesla go about solving issues the "Tesla way". It is akin to the "just in time" part supply so many manufacturers use; in this case Tesla is substituting solutions for parts. At least that's my perception. And thou unorthodox, so far it has served Tesla well and I am ok with that. However, the biggest reason for believing Tesla will "deliver" really is about Tesla management and the employee's of Tesla. Simply put, they are all in and I believe will make the Model S more than we can imagine. When I have had my doubts, and I have had a few, I am reminded of GB's speech at the Fremont event where all he asked of us was a little patience and we would be rewarded. So, in short, I understand the rant but also believe you have that faith in Tesla as well, evidenced by your commitment to purchase the S.

    And with regards to the audio system; I have not heard it so really cannot comment other than to say a high quality system will reveal a poor source and really sound bad; conversely reward the listener with excellent sound provided the source is also good.
     
  5. ckessel

    ckessel Active Member

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    I really don't understand the obsession with cup holders. If you're on a long trip it's water bottles with an air tight cap. No one gets open containers of any kind in a car of mine.

    Though despite the things you're upset about, sounds like you're buying anyway. Unless the government prevents web page loading, in which case you'll inexplicably be anti-Tesla because of that.
     
  6. Velo1

    Velo1 Member

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    I don't care too much about the current cup holders one way or the other; however, they are simply a very poor ergonomic design. I would have hoped Telsa would have recognized this early in the design, but it appears to be lost on them. I think it is that short-sightedness that concerns me. WTF are they thinking? Plus, if you have a drink in the cup holders, where do you put your right arm/elbow now since the drink will be in the way?
     
  7. ckessel

    ckessel Active Member

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    Maybe it's a Franz design thing. The RX8's cup holders are exactly the same way.
     
  8. gjunky

    gjunky Waiting for the Model ☰

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    I think the issue is that they simply never lived with any form of the car. A lot of time was spent on engineering and this shows but very few people from Tesla seemed to have driven the car for purposes other then testing the ride. The freshly trained people at the Scottsdale store had not driven the car before the drive event even though they just went through training. It looks like this is the case for most employees. With no prior experience in design to fall back on, how would they know about the functionality and every day practicality of the interior? As far as I know, there were no test mules like other manufacturers use to do early testing. This is of course because TM has no other models to use for this purpose. I am curious to find out if there are interior mockups (full size) at their design facility. This would have brought out some of the design flaws (my opinion).
    I think the interior looks ok but is not practical in every day use.
    I think a redesign/rework of the doors, center console, center armrest could solve all/most of this.
     
  9. pguerra

    pguerra Member

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    #9 pguerra, Jul 28, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2012
    I agree with you completely. In fact, I'd say that the short sightedness which is concerning has allowed them to over-engineer some items and divert precious resources away from other important things such as rear seat cup holders and a stronger subwoofer (or the addition of a subwoofer whatever the case may be). For example, Tesla spent precious resources to design, engineer, and create a memory function for the rear lift gate. Now you can set the height of how much the rear lift gate opens. Why is this a needed feature?? The Model S is a sleek low profile car, not a tall SUV that may hit the top of the garage if the lift gate is opened completely. It just doesn't seem to make much "real life" sense such as a cup holder or stronger bass (and it shouldn't matter the song or song source BTW. In my Hybrid Escalade all songs have great sounding low range that have a fullness and richness and balanced sound no matter what the song or source and unlike any vehicle I've heard before. This has not been my experience in the Get Amped tour).

    Does this engineering short sightnedness have anything to do with those two senior engineers at Tesla that suddenly resigned several months ago???

    In the end, yes I have some faith that Tesla will pull through and not disappoint, but it is rapidly waning as I hear of more disappointing missing features such as the lack of lights in the sun visor or rear seat reading lights (who doesn't have to look for items in the back seat at night sometimes?). Do not misunderstand, what Tesla has accomplished is nothing short of extraordinary regarding the drive train and batteries, but I guess such is the case when you're so brilliant, you can forget simple stuff. Sort of like being too book smart and less street smart.
     
  10. kendallpb

    kendallpb Model S: P 8061

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    It all seems better than my Miata, where if I used the factory "cupholder" (a generous use of the term), it interferes with me just sitting there with my arms in a normal position. Thank god for after-market is all I can say (that only interferes with the passenger's left leg). Lordy, Model S owners won't know how good they have it.
     
  11. Norbert

    Norbert TSLA will win

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    I always thought the cup holder is in a good position to keep the right hand on the steering wheel, and take the cup with the left hand (that's what I started doing in my previous car). I also can't remember trying to rest my elbow while driving, so I'm not sure how it would be in the way. Maybe I should bring a drink next time.
     
  12. AnOutsider

    AnOutsider S532 # XS27

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    Just to play devils advocate here. Both of you are comparing the Model S, touted as a luxury sedan, to little sports cars only REALLY suitable for 2 adults and not in the "premium" tier. Using the above logics, I could say there's no reason to complain about the dash materials (some didn't feel the leather was supple/luxurious enough) because a Chevy Aveo is all plastic.
     
  13. kevincwelch

    kevincwelch Active Member

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    Personally, I think this is yet another issue related to the level of communication between Tesla and its customers.

    I think the concern is heightened (and deservedly so) because we have put a down payment of sorts on the car. Looking at the demographics polls for range of income that I did, the Model S will be a significant expense for many people. When people pay a lot for an object, especially when it is close to being out of range, expectations at high.

    Talk of the Model S being the best car out there no longer is reaching the potential owners with any enthusiasm because comparing the Model S with other sedans in the price range shows glaring deficiencies in the Model S.

    I'm not talking about voice control or adaptive cruise control; I'm talking about basic things I had in my $14k Civic 10 years ago. Or basic things you see in the Leaf or Volt.

    If you're the type of person who drives 10 miles round trip every day to work and that is all, perhaps cabin lighting or cup holders aren't a big deal. The lack of creature comforts and basic amenities is inconsistent with claims of long range driving: you can drive 300 miles, but don't plan on doing anything but driving and listening to music. Your carpooling buddies will have to hold their sodas for that trip. Don't drive at night because you can read in the back...or maybe the glow of the computer is light enough. Don't check your teeth for gunk, because there's no vanity mirror.

    The notion that Tesla has taken money from people for an idea-- a concept-- is unsettling for many, especially that the car isn't finished and lacks what many consider to be basic.

    Tesla ideally would be more communicative with folks about these issues. They don't have to say "ok, we'll put in some cup holders for ya!" A simple acknowledgment that they are aware of these specific issues and won't be addressing then because of X. Or, a statement that production in 2013 will have these issues resolved. Something.

    I don't mind the Spartan interior: forces me to be cleaner. But please, how about some basic things like lights and cup holders? Make the Model S as convenient as my Honda on the inside.

    Sent from my Transformer Prime TF201 using Tapatalk 2
     
  14. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    We'll have to wait to see what the official word is but the other companies have the advantage of having many of those features for years as you said and the suppliers that can get the parts to them for cheaper than to Tesla I'd imagine. If Tesla had given itself maybe another year to get this car ready all of this would be nothing but they set a schedule and are obviously coming up and through it a little. They also are in the position that they need to start generating revenue soon since the Roadster isn't sold anymore. Most of these growing pains will probably only affect the first few thousand people which is part of the fun of being an early adopter. At close the the 10,000th car made, I think you'll be fine. All of these questions should be answered about the vanity mirror and cup holders before you have to lock down.
     
  15. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    #15 jerry33, Jul 29, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2012
    I'm not sure I want a car that rattles all the surrounding cars with a subwoofer and makes you appear to be some dumb sixteen year old.


    It's pretty obvious you've never scraped a lift-gate on a garage door. Obviously one of the designers has--or perhaps Elon has. Given that this is something that will save you thousands in repairs, I think it's a great idea and given a choice between cup holders and lift gate memory, I'd choose lift gate memory. Older garages do not have tall openings.

    Unlikely. Those were European engineers. In Europe cup holders are considered an American affectation (although in recent years they have caught on). If anything, the lack of cup holders is due to those engineers rather than because they left.

    Now I have plenty of complaints about Tesla's design decisions (particularly all the chrome) but I'm willing to wait until they have produced a bunch more cars before throwing the car in the trash heap.
     
  16. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    I just love the fact that all the complaints are about cup holders and whatnot. Nothing about performance!

    Awesome car.
     
  17. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    +1. Yes. The core functions are about as perfect as you can get (despite all my whining). Right now my main complaint is that I won't get an invite to the Get Amped tour in Dallas. Because the original list of cities didn't come within 1000 miles, I answered No thanks after I received the first invitation. I think that when they added the additional cities, they should have given the No thanks responders (or at least the No thanks responders that were close to the new locations) a second chance.

    Yes, I did send an email asking to be reinstated, but no response so far.
     
  18. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    That has to be an oversight. I'd call them then if you don't get an answer.
     
  19. digitaltim

    digitaltim Sig737 VIN628

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    I accidentally permanently deleted my invite to the DC store. I tried to have Tesla resend the message which they said could not be done, but a quick email to the DC store manager got me my requested time slot and day. I then received a confirming email.

    Call or email the store.
     
  20. ckessel

    ckessel Active Member

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    Well, the things that tend to make you dislike a car (or hell, anything, even a person) are the day to day living experiences. It could do 0-60 in 1.3 seconds and corner like nothing in the universe, but if I hate sitting it in every day that performance doesn't tip the balance.

    That said, I don't really grok kevin's complaints. Hold a soda for an entire road trip? Why would you have a partially filled soda for hours? Drink the damn thing and be done. Or seal it and stick it in the bag at your feet, because every road trip I've ever taken in 30 years required at least a backpack or fanny pack or something to take along as well. Then again, no sticky sodas in my car period. Back seat lighting for reading? No lights allowed on in the interior of my car at night, it causes glare/reflection on the windshield. Get a book light, or better yet, get a backlit kindle/nook/ipad.

    I've got 3 kids, the oldest 21 now, I've never had any of the needs on road trip he's described. Kevin seems to be describing road trips with physical adults, but the emotional/mental capacities of 3 year olds. Yea, I'd like some limited rear storage, but the level of ire/concern expressed seems exaggerated to the point of hyperbole.

    Now, if the seats aren't comfortable, the AC was poor and the vents didn't have control, the headroom consistently too low, and it lacked rear cup holders, then I can see the cumulative impact of the interior dissuading me from the purchase.
     

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