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Are we Really Really Saving Money owning a Tesla?

SeanM

Member
Oct 2, 2018
159
36
Fairfax, VA
Hello,

I have had my Model-3 past one year and enjoying every single time I sit in it (at times I just try to "find" reasons just so I can drive it).

But, every time I plug it to charge, this question comes in to my mind, in the long run "Are we REALLY REALLY SAVING MONEY owning a Tesla??"

Because, between Sentry mode, cabin temperature maintenance... and other miles-sapping activities that we might just not be aware of, my Model-3 tends to lose around 3-5 miles per 24 hours... give or take a couple of miles... WHETHER I DRIVE MY CAR OR NOT. That's serious loss of miles/charge, just with the car sitting out there in my garage.

What are your (unbiased) thoughts?
 

Glamisduner

Active Member
Aug 2, 2017
3,581
2,118
Escondido, CA
Hello,

I have had my Model-3 past one year and enjoying every single time I sit in it (at times I just try to "find" reasons just so I can drive it).

But, every time I plug it to charge, this question comes in to my mind, in the long run "Are we REALLY REALLY SAVING MONEY owning a Tesla??"

Because, between Sentry mode, cabin temperature maintenance... and other miles-sapping activities that we might just not be aware of, my Model-3 tends to lose around 3-5 miles per 24 hours... give or take a couple of miles... WHETHER I DRIVE MY CAR OR NOT. That's serious loss of miles/charge, just with the car sitting out there in my garage.

What are your (unbiased) thoughts?
Maybe in the long run, but over all for sure no. It will take allot of fuel and rebates to cover the 75k I paid for it before mods.
Saving money over buying a gas car with similar performance? Well probably.
 

BZM3

Member
Aug 15, 2019
281
124
Somewhere
i mean - i dont pay for gas and my apartment building has a free to use charger. my lease is 485 per month for tesla (same i was quoted for 3 series BMWs and Audi A4s etc). minus roughly 150 a month for gas. effectively i pay 330 a month to lease the car. so maybe unless i leased a honda civic with 15,000 miles a year, yes i am saving money.
 

640k

Member
Jul 15, 2019
928
625
Cincinnati
What are your (unbiased) thoughts?
use one of those calculators? honestly i don't understand your question? are you questioning the idea that because you're drawing power, and that draw costs money, that there's little exposed cost savings?

there's always cost of ownership for any vehicle. your fuel source is different because you draw from your electrical. you can negate that in many ways, but you're still paying for fuel.

i'm really confused by your post.
 
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-DA3

Member
May 19, 2019
74
87
FL
I love the TECH and the tank up via the SUN concept!
Screenshot_9_12_19__3_19_PM.jpg
 

ecarfan

Well-Known Member
Sep 21, 2013
19,203
13,856
West Vancouver, British Columbia
my Model-3 tends to lose around 3-5 miles per 24 hours... give or take a couple of miles... WHETHER I DRIVE MY CAR OR NOT. That's serious loss of miles/charge, just with the car sitting out there in my garage.
Calculate your cost, based on what you pay per kWh to charge (home or work?) of those 3-5 miles/day and then decide if that is important to you.

I suspect you will find that it is pennies per day of charge loss.
 

focher

Active Member
Oct 15, 2013
1,010
1,450
Bay Area
In a like-for-like comparison to a comparable ICE, the Tesla has a lower cost of ownership.

That 3-5 miles costs about 30-50 cents in the most expensive electricity areas.
 

ZOMGVTEK

Member
May 19, 2015
558
433
'Merica
I'd be curious to see how many people on here purchased a 3 with the intent to save money. I don't see how that makes a lot of sense. It's a moderately expensive vehicle, with a less than stellar track record for reliability. Buying a 10 year old Honda or Toyota, and doing maintenance yourself sounds a lot more sensible if saving money is the goal. The cost savings there are extremely significant. The #1 cost owning a new Model 3 is likely to be depreciation, not the fuel cost. Basically the same story as any new car. But if you wanted to ONLY drive a new car that was always under warranty, AND you compared it to a semi-luxury car, I don't see how it would end up behind for most everyone.

Personally, I don't really care if it cost 10x more than an ICE car per mile, I think its a better car.
 

ChadS

Last tank of gas: March 2009
Jul 16, 2009
3,323
2,674
Redmond, WA
I too don't really get the question. Of course owning a Tesla, like any car costs more than not owning a car; so you must mean compared to something else - but nobody can give you a reasonable answer unless you tell us what you are comparing it to (and how much you drive).

If you are just worried about the cost of Sentry and Cabin Overheat, you can turn them off.
 
Last edited:

DirtyT3sla

Member
Apr 17, 2019
534
559
Holly
As far as the car overall, of course not. These cars are very expensive.

In terms of fuel specifically, yes, it's still much cheaper.

And as for solar...when you include the cost of the panels, your fuel is WAY more expensive than mine lol
 

justsomeguy

Member
Jul 4, 2019
295
288
Vancouver, Bc
In my case.. overall? No. Here in BC the much more expensive insurance negates any gas savings I'd have.

Car maintenance on my old honda was pretty much negligible ($50 in oil twice a year) the entire time I owned it.
 

640k

Member
Jul 15, 2019
928
625
Cincinnati
I'd be curious to see how many people on here purchased a 3 with the intent to save money. I don't see how that makes a lot of sense. It's a moderately expensive vehicle, with a less than stellar track record for reliability. Buying a 10 year old Honda or Toyota, and doing maintenance yourself sounds a lot more sensible if saving money is the goal. The cost savings there are extremely significant. The #1 cost owning a new Model 3 is likely to be depreciation, not the fuel cost. Basically the same story as any new car. But if you wanted to ONLY drive a new car that was always under warranty, AND you compared it to a semi-luxury car, I don't see how it would end up behind for most everyone.

Personally, I don't really care if it cost 10x more than an ICE car per mile, I think its a better car.
if you're in the market for a new vehicle, the TCO can be significantly less than a comparable vehicle. used will always be a better financial value than new, no matter what you buy.
 

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