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Connectivity when driving in Mexico

DipStick

Member
Oct 28, 2019
70
72
USA
Hello everybody, long time lurker. I’m moving to Hermosillo, Mexico, and would like to bring a US spec model 3 or Y with me. I prefer not to buy one in Mexico (I don’t have to pay any tax or duties so that’s not an issue). Will the connectivity still work? If not, will everything work like normal if I use my phone as a hotspot?

It also seems that I would need to return to the USA for warranty work. That isn’t much of an issue because I’ll be close to the border, assuming the car is drivable when the issue comes up. Has anybody had any success having Tesla work on a car in warranty while in Mexico?
 

CharleyBC

Active Member
Jun 28, 2019
1,465
1,674
Talent, OR
I’m pretty sure our intrepid @Bighorn made a road trip through Mexico. He might not have warranty claim experience, but should know about your connectivity questions. I hope by mentioning him he’ll see this. Good luck!
 

Bighorn

Top Supercharger
Jun 19, 2013
3,076
5,609
Big Horn, Wyoming
Thanks for the heads up.

My Model 3 had connectivity in Mexico where there was a signal. My early Model S presumably would not as it does not in Canada. I count 3 service centers in Mexico, so returning to the US for service work is not a forgone conclusion, though South Tucson is much closer. Under Tesla roadside assistance you have a 500 mile tow radius for warranty items and 50 miles for tire repair(4 yr/50k miles). Longer for battery and drive units.
 

DipStick

Member
Oct 28, 2019
70
72
USA
Thanks for the heads up.

My Model 3 had connectivity in Mexico where there was a signal. My early Model S presumably would not as it does not in Canada. I count 3 service centers in Mexico, so returning to the US for service work is not a forgone conclusion, though South Tucson is much closer. Under Tesla roadside assistance you have a 500 mile tow radius for warranty items and 50 miles for tire repair(4 yr/50k miles). Longer for battery and drive units.
Thanks for the quick reply! Do you think Tesla would cross into Mexico for that tow? I’ve tried to ask them but figuring out how to contact them is a chore itself. There aren’t any service stations or super chargers on my side of Mexico. Because of security restrictions I can’t drive to any of them either. But that’s fine since Tucson is so close anyway.
Thanks again!
 

Bighorn

Top Supercharger
Jun 19, 2013
3,076
5,609
Big Horn, Wyoming
I would not bank on US service crossing the border. Very unlikely in my opinion. I felt very vulnerable traveling in those areas where you are not allowed. I did have a 4 day Mexican insurance policy through Chubb, so I think I had a $1000 towing benefit, but that doesn’t help much if you’re in a dead zone and a non-Spanish speaker or the tow is several hundred miles. I quickly pass out of Tesla roadside coverage since I’m driving 80k+ miles a year, so I get a rider for towing coverage through my State Farm policy. I think it’s about $5-10/year. I’d suggest finding coverage that would include towing across the border.
 
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Saguarojoe

Member
May 28, 2017
123
61
Tucson, AZ
Hello everybody, long time lurker. I’m moving to Hermosillo, Mexico, and would like to bring a US spec model 3 or Y with me. I prefer not to buy one in Mexico (I don’t have to pay any tax or duties so that’s not an issue). Will the connectivity still work? If not, will everything work like normal if I use my phone as a hotspot?

It also seems that I would need to return to the USA for warranty work. That isn’t much of an issue because I’ll be close to the border, assuming the car is drivable when the issue comes up. Has anybody had any success having Tesla work on a car in warranty while in Mexico?
The only thing I can tell you is there are no super chargers along México 15 yet. There are some destination chargers which you can find on the PlugShare app.
There is a supercharger route to SMDA and quite a few around México DF. I’m not quite sure about your connectivity question. Are you asking about the car connecting to Tesla? You might be able to get some help by asking Tesla directly.
 

Saguarojoe

Member
May 28, 2017
123
61
Tucson, AZ
Hello everybody, long time lurker. I’m moving to Hermosillo, Mexico, and would like to bring a US spec model 3 or Y with me. I prefer not to buy one in Mexico (I don’t have to pay any tax or duties so that’s not an issue). Will the connectivity still work? If not, will everything work like normal if I use my phone as a hotspot?

It also seems that I would need to return to the USA for warranty work. That isn’t much of an issue because I’ll be close to the border, assuming the car is drivable when the issue comes up. Has anybody had any success having Tesla work on a car in warranty while in Mexico?
The only thing I can tell you is there are no super chargers along México 15 yet. There are some destination chargers which you can find on the PlugShare app.
There is a supercharger route to SMDA and quite a few around México DF. I’m not quite sure about your connectivity question. Are you asking about the car connecting to Tesla? You might be able to get some help by asking Tesla directly.
 

Saguarojoe

Member
May 28, 2017
123
61
Tucson, AZ
By the way, I’m pretty sure you are going to need an import permit if you are going to be living in Hermosillo. Easy enough to get a Km22 and you can then drive anywhere you want to.
 

Saguarojoe

Member
May 28, 2017
123
61
Tucson, AZ
By the way, I’m pretty sure you are going to need an import permit if you are going to be living in Hermosillo. Easy enough to get at Km22 and you can then drive anywhere you want to.
And oh yes, be sure to talk to State Farm about the details of towing in Mexico. That sounds like it might be questionable. Also talk to the company where you are going to buy your Mexico car insurance as American insurance is not valid in Mexico no matter what State Farm says.
 

DipStick

Member
Oct 28, 2019
70
72
USA
The only thing I can tell you is there are no super chargers along México 15 yet. There are some destination chargers which you can find on the PlugShare app.
There is a supercharger route to SMDA and quite a few around México DF. I’m not quite sure about your connectivity question. Are you asking about the car connecting to Tesla? You might be able to get some help by asking Tesla directly.
I’m wondering about if the gps and entertainment will work. I can make it to the border without charging fairly easily and will charge at home but prefer to have lte as well
 

DipStick

Member
Oct 28, 2019
70
72
USA
By the way, I’m pretty sure you are going to need an import permit if you are going to be living in Hermosillo. Easy enough to get a Km22 and you can then drive anywhere you want to.
I’m wondering about if the gps and entertainment will work. I can make it to the border without charging fairly easily and will charge at home but prefer to have lte as well
Thanks.
By the way, I’m pretty sure you are going to need an import permit if you are going to be living in Hermosillo. Easy enough to get a Km22 and you can then drive anywhere you want to.
thanks. You actually don’t need an import permit for Hermosillo because it is in the hassle free zone, but I will get one through my work so it shouldn’t be an issue.
 

DipStick

Member
Oct 28, 2019
70
72
USA
And oh yes, be sure to talk to State Farm about the details of towing in Mexico. That sounds like it might be questionable. Also talk to the company where you are going to buy your Mexico car insurance as American insurance is not valid in Mexico no matter what State Farm says.

there are a couple companies that cover both sides, so I should be fine!
 

Bighorn

Top Supercharger
Jun 19, 2013
3,076
5,609
Big Horn, Wyoming
I’ll reiterate that GPS and entertainment worked in 2018. Nav took me off the toll road for a big accident on day 1. Learned a tough lesson to never get off the toll road. I did need my phone to navigate back after Nav routed me on a non-existent route. Reminded me of travel in Cambodia, only dangerous.
 
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Bighorn

Top Supercharger
Jun 19, 2013
3,076
5,609
Big Horn, Wyoming
It just dawned on me that I may have proof!

A23AA8D4-867E-4F07-B6B9-D8B48B99C1D4.jpeg
384E4437-B649-49C6-960D-EFDF39B138FE.jpeg
 
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Saguarojoe

Member
May 28, 2017
123
61
Tucson, AZ
I’m wondering about if the gps and entertainment will work. I can make it to the border without charging fairly easily and will charge at home but prefer to have lte as well
GPS is dependant on cellular service. You could test it by crossing the border a short way. Same with entertainment.
 

Saguarojoe

Member
May 28, 2017
123
61
Tucson, AZ
there are a couple companies that cover both sides, so I should be fine!
It's not the company covering you in Mexico, it's that Mexico only recognizes coverage issued by a Mexican company. You can literally wind up in jail for a long time, especially if there is a personal injury, without the Mexican company coverage. Talk to one of the companies that sell Mexican insurance. Sanborns has local offices. You can call them.
 

CharleyBC

Active Member
Jun 28, 2019
1,465
1,674
Talent, OR
GPS is dependant on cellular service.
Well, yes and no. GPS itself doesn’t use cellular. It’s picking up signals from a constellation of satellites to determine your location. That should work almost anywhere on Earth, except underground. But the maps come over cellular, so giving you a meaningful display of your GPS-determined location does need cellular service.
 

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