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Can we change batteries after purchase?

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by timk225, Aug 1, 2017.

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  1. timk225

    timk225 Member

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    Suppose someone buys a base model 220 mile model 3.

    Months later, they decide they want the 310 mile battery.

    Adding it would be as simple as driving to the local service center and have them swap it out, but what about the cost?

    Would Tesla not allow the swap (battery size is not in the vin, unlike dual motors), so it shouldn't matter, or would they say something like "Battery upgrade? No problem sir, that will be $11,500. You should have bought it with the car for $9000." ?
     
  2. sandpiper

    sandpiper Active Member

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    They were, for a while, letting 85 drivers swap out for 90 batteries. But they didn't give much in credit for the old battery. It was something like $25,000. I don't think they had many takers, and I don't believe they're offering it anymore.
     
  3. zer0cool

    zer0cool Member

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    It has not really been possible or economically reasonable. It's probably cheaper to sell and buy the new car.

    You should get the longer range car if you think you might need the longer range. If this is your only car, you really need the longer range.

    Given you are in Pittsburgh, you really should comfortably expect just 2/3 the rated range in the winter... so ya, get the longer range. Note that you will also lose a few % in the first year, and supercharging from 80 to 100% takes as long as 0-80%... so if SC is needed, you have to be able to get to your destination or next SC with 2/3 of 80%... unless you are willing to wait around for a long time.

    For EVs, range is king, more important than any thing. Shorter range leads to TREMENDOUS wasted time on any road trip, believe me.
     
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  4. melindav

    melindav ☰ reserved

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    Elon was asked that recently at a talk he did (was it the TEDTalk?) and he said no. If someone needs more range they will need to trade-in for a larger battery car.
     
  5. jelloslug

    jelloslug Active Member

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    The short answer: no. There have been some instances where people have had Tesla physically upgrade their pack to a larger size but as a rule they don't offer it right now.
     
  6. derekmw

    derekmw Member

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    The only other possibility is whether the 'stated' range is software limited. We see cases of this with the MS where there are 75 models that are software locked but actually 85.

    Then later down the line, Tesla offers an option to pay for the battery upgrade.

    The one upside to this (if it's the case) is that you can actually charge more than 90% without degrading the battery unnecessarily since technically at the stated 100% (if you assume the battery is 85 but software limited to 75), it is still not over 90% charged.
     
  7. melindav

    melindav ☰ reserved

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    Tesla's specs included weights with a significant difference between the two versions - unless you think they made up the lighter weight just to fool people.
     
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  8. kzod

    kzod Member

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    LMAO. This isn't a tandard car battery that can be easilyy swapped out. It is a BIG F'n battery. If they would do it, it would probably cost $25k after the fact.
     
  9. derekmw

    derekmw Member

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    I don't, but do we really know that both versions don't have a larger battery that is capable of a longer range than is stated? I don't think anyone knows. It makes it even harder since they're going away from even stating the battery size.
     
  10. azred

    azred Member

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    Well stated. Too bad a lot of first time owners either won't see your post or won't believe you.
     
  11. thelastdeadmouse

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    I think the real reason they don't do this is because they don't really have any use for the old pack. They can't put a used pack in a new car and sell it as new. They can recycle the pack but I'm sure you recover very little of the final product cost doing that. Maybe they wholesale them at low cost to reclaim centers or used part brokers? That's why the cost of upgrading was so high, you're not upgrading as much as buying a totally new pack and just "throwing out" the old one, and that cost makes it a really poor value compared to just selling your car and buying a new one.
     
  12. azred

    azred Member

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    Say what? Are you aware Tesla had a pilot program whereby travelers could swap batteries instead of sitting at Superchargers? Even though that pilot project didn't attract enough interest to continue, it wasn't because the swap was difficult or time consuming. (It was probably mostly because people didn't like the idea of having a battery with unknown history, albeit only temporarily.)
     
  13. voip-ninja

    voip-ninja Member

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    Is this an actual predicament you are expecting, of buying the car with lower battery and then wanting to swap the battery later when finances permit, or only if you drive for awhile and discover the shorter range one won't work?

    It's an extremely bad idea.

    The battery in the Chevy Bolt was recently confirmed by GM to have a retail cost of about $15,000 and is smaller than the Tesla battery. The onboard charger is also different between the two range versions of Model-3 so would also need to be replaced.

    So, let's say $16,000 in parts plus another 6-10 hours of technician labor at about $150 an hour.

    So, $18,000 or more to swap the battery on the car later, assuming Tesla would even agree to such a thing, or just paying $9,000 up front.
     
  14. KarenRei

    KarenRei KarenRei KarenRei KarenRei KarenRei KarenRei

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    Actually, I understand the person's speculation. When your pack goes off warranty (years or distance), and its range is degraded (or dies altogether), can you salvage your vehicle - and in the process get the latest and greatest in pack technology (since the rest of your vehicle may still be in great condition), even if it's expensive?

    I for one hope that, with M3 volumes of 500k per year, that such an offer could be made economically. It depends on how complicated the swapout process is. But given that Tesla has to swap out batteries that fail under warranty, surely they've tried to not needlessly complicate it.

    I'm the sort of person who tends to drive a vehicle into the ground. I have no need for a larger pack at present - our speed limit is low, and there's no superchargers anyway, just CHAdeMOs. But if 8 years down the line my pack is showing its age but the vehicle is fine, would I like to pay the then-prices for a then-top-of-the-line pack? Probably! 8 years from now, drop $10k (price drop over time) and get maybe 350-400mi EPA range (energy density improvement)? Um, yeah....
     
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  15. KarenRei

    KarenRei KarenRei KarenRei KarenRei KarenRei KarenRei

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    #15 KarenRei, Aug 1, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2017
    Let's look at the Roadster for comparison. Its packs were and will always be expensive because they were handbuilt, but it gives a sense of scale. A pack replacement used to cost $40k and would go 244 miles. Today you can do the same for $29k for 400 miles.

    If I'm enjoying my M3, the drivetrain is fine and nothing new is exciting me, why wouldn't I? Unless Tesla unveils a car that continues where Aptera left off, I don't see what would tempt me to switch cars.
     
  16. insaneoctane

    insaneoctane Member

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    Without any doubt in my mind, now is the cheapest time to get LR for your vehicle.
    It may be possible to upgrade later, but it won't be cheaper (current roadster battery upgrade is $29,000!)
    Tesla may lower the LR price in the future, but you will already have your car and the federal tax incentive/rebate will be gone.
    Now is the cheapest time to get LR for your vehicle.
     
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  17. thelastdeadmouse

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    I'm sure that 10 years down the road when batteries start to wear out replacements will be available and that they'll probably have more range, just like is happening for Roadsters. The large install base of Model 3's will ensure that. Just don't expect it any time soon.
     
  18. Troy

    Troy Active Member

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    Let's say they sell the smaller battery for $12,000 and the larger one for $21,000. Do you think they will give you $10,000 for your used small battery? It's not going to happen. You might get 10% if you are lucky. In other words, recycling value.

    Tesla had a battery swap/upgrade option for a while. They were charging $25,000 for the new battery and the trade in value for the old battery was $2,500. Furthermore, trading in was a requirement to be able to purchase the new battery. People were especially upset about this because they could get a lot more on eBay. There were few takers and the program was discontinued.
     
  19. CarlitoDoc

    CarlitoDoc Member

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  20. kzod

    kzod Member

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    That program was vaporware, like the original S 40. Before there were enough Superchargers (any?) they introduced this idea to increase confidence in new Tesla buyers. Only a few people were invited to use the service and it never went wide scale. But it wasa great marketing strategy.
     

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