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Consumer Reports Model 3 reliability rating: reliable?

Smitty79

Member
Aug 8, 2019
55
25
97132
I'm thinking of getting a 3 or an X. Both have terrible ratings and predicted reliability in my CR app. But everyone I know has nothing but good things to say about them. What gives?
 

john85775

Member
Oct 10, 2018
419
479
USA
I'm thinking of getting a 3 or an X. Both have terrible ratings and predicted reliability in my CR app. But everyone I know has nothing but good things to say about them. What gives?

I flip-flopped on our X order last year over CR's rating:

Just canceled my MX order - here's why

These forums gave me a dose of reality -- CR's complaints are equally weighted. A small bug on a Tesla is weighted the same as an engine blowing out on a Chrysler.

The car will absolutely have bugs, just count on it. If it is anything like our experience, it will also be the best car decision you'll make.

Once I set my wife's expectations about the bugs, we were fine. And we did indeed have issues on our X - FWDs not opening in high heat, autopilot issues, LTE going out. Everything has been fixed with either a mobile tech or a firmware update, and yes, it is frustrating. But we would do it again in a heartbeat -- and didn't hesitate to replace our X with a Raven X last month. And we're picking up a Model 3 Performance this weekend. I expect a few more bugs, but Tesla is just in a class all by itself. The alternatives are just not tenable.
 

Bet TSLA

Active Member
Dec 8, 2014
2,829
10,376
Cupertino, CA
I'm thinking of getting a 3 or an X. Both have terrible ratings and predicted reliability in my CR app. But everyone I know has nothing but good things to say about them. What gives?
CR has never had the slightest clue about how to rate high tech gadgets, and that's what these cars are. Ignore CR. The only mistake you can make when buying a Tesla is to put it off.

And even for the sorts of things CR is good at, Wirecutter is better.
 

r1200gs4ok

Active Member
Jul 17, 2019
1,357
454
Irvine
You won’t look back, except to see all those others you left at the change of the traffic light. Hardly drive my 2014 E350 any more, you’ll stop thinking about the cost to “fill up”...
Few moving parts, very little maintenance, much to like, it’s the future...
I have a 2018 Lexus GS350 and ES350.......2016 Tacoma......my wife just sold her ES350....she wont let me drive the M3 anymore......get the picture?
 

CarlK

Active Member
Mar 23, 2013
1,919
1,235
SF Bay Area
If there was not obvious before there are pretty convincing evidences now that CR, for some unknown reasons, is very anti-Tesla. Just take a look at it's recent preview of Audi E-tron, the EV that is inferior to the Model 3 in every measure but CR went all its way to paint a bright picture to make it look like a worthy, or even better, Tesla competitor.

-- E-tron's meager range should be the deal breaker but CR just brushed it off and said someone who has money to buy a $80,000 car should be able to afford a second car. What is that? CR? Buy an already overpriced car and spend more to buy another car to make up for the deficiency?

-- The pretty lethargic acceleration was described as "appropriate for a luxury vehicle". And "On the plus side, there is no spinning of wheels that we have experienced in some other EVs". Hello you know that's because it's slow? So everyone was wrong slow is good in cars now.

-- E-Tron's recall after just a few month of the road was not mentioned. That's actually a not so insignificant recall concerning danger of battery fire. Would CR be so nice to Tesla if that happens in one of its cars?

CR is all bought and paid for. They tried to mislead people but they do benefit from online advertising. I wouldn't waste my time or money to listen to what they say. Their knowledge of cars is quite amateurish compares to those at leading car magazines anyway.
 

Lanzer

Member
May 2, 2018
206
459
San Jose
I'm thinking of getting a 3 or an X. Both have terrible ratings and predicted reliability in my CR app. But everyone I know has nothing but good things to say about them. What gives?

The truth is that Tesla is going through growing pains. The percentage of cars with issues are higher than established brands that had been doing it for 50 years. Scour through the forums and you will find examples of those who had issues, with almost all of them problems that can be resolved with a trip to the service center. At the same time, a vast majority of owners had no issues at all. But of course, even if 90% of us have no issues, a car with 10% chance of facing issues is exactly what makes a car rank low on the CR scale.

Electric cars do not have a thousand moving parts the way a gas engine does. If your Tesla has no issue after a year, chances are there won't be issues for the next 10 years. No worry about timing belt, wear and tear from not swapping oil filter often enough, transmission issues and increase in transmission lag over time, random oil leaks, engine vibration increase, gasket leakage, and that 100 item checklist that need to be checked off on a major engine check up, all gone! My Leaf is 8 years old. I never need to bring it into a shop for a tune up.

To me it comes down to whether I want a flip phone with 100% reliability, or get a smartphone that might have a few bugs. It's not even a comparison. No one I know ever want to drive a gas car after owning a Model 3.
 

CDN-Build

Member
Aug 15, 2018
65
39
Cambridge
And yet when the first S came out, CR couldn't have said better. Best car ever etc.
And everyone agreed.
But as soon as CR says the opposite, CR are criticized?

CR rating didn’t paint the right picture for the recent review.

Which Tesla(s) do you own ?
How many miles do you have on it. ?
When did you buy ?

Seems you are recommending others to not buy Tesla. What happened to you, and your Tesla that makes you not like the cars ?
 
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bhzmark

Active Member
Jul 21, 2013
3,426
5,167
What gives?

CR made at least one, I think two, recent hires that were antiTesla before they joined CR and they have carried their bias and stupidity to CR.

Feds Say Tesla Exaggerating Model 3 Crash-Test Results

Even look at the this recent article where they begrudgingly concede that "The Tesla Model 3 and Model X are in rare company, with only 10 current vehicles achieving five stars across the board in NHTSA crash tests." But then they then take up article space by listing all those other cars as if to say please consider buying one of these other safe cars.

And also in this article they avoid going into the rather simple technical detail of the VSS score and weight class issues and the actual source of the data from the NHTSA own site.

CR is an embarassment on EVs and especially on Tesla right now.

CR is just another example of how technology advances one funeral at a time. I'm sure that there are younger and smarter people at CR just waiting for their colleagues who don't get it to get out of the way.
 

GreenT

verT
Mar 14, 2014
997
344
France
CR rating didn’t paint the right picture for the recent review.

Which Tesla(s) do you own ?
How many miles do you have on it. ?
When did you buy ?

Seems you are recommending others to not buy Tesla. What happened to you, and your Tesla that makes you not like the cars ?
If you read my signature, you'll see I am a former owner.
I had about 80000 miles on it. Model S.
I love(d) the car ... the service became so bad that it became a liability.
Might buy again IF
- they fix their firmware; V8, browser, stop making games, etc.
- add adequate service centers, USA and Europe, with a maximum "gap" similar to other manufacturers.
- support those centers
I saw their best (2013?) and their worst (now) so today, yes, I recommend against buying until they get their act together
 

CDN-Build

Member
Aug 15, 2018
65
39
Cambridge
If you read my signature, you'll see I am a former owner.
I had about 80000 miles on it. Model S.
I love(d) the car ... the service became so bad that it became a liability.
Might buy again IF
- they fix their firmware; V8, browser, stop making games, etc.
- add adequate service centers, USA and Europe, with a maximum "gap" similar to other manufacturers.
- support those centers
I saw their best (2013?) and their worst (now) so today, yes, I recommend against buying until they get their act together

I can’t see your signature on my phone while in this app.
So you had challenges with an older car.
Things have changed since then.
If you don’t own now, it would be hard to judge based solely on past experiences only don’t you think.
Steering someone away from Tesla based on your past experiences, seems a little biased.
Similar to how CR and some others have been.
 

killua

Member
Mar 31, 2019
43
100
MD
I flip-flopped on our X order last year over CR's rating:

Just canceled my MX order - here's why

These forums gave me a dose of reality -- CR's complaints are equally weighted. A small bug on a Tesla is weighted the same as an engine blowing out on a Chrysler.

The car will absolutely have bugs, just count on it. If it is anything like our experience, it will also be the best car decision you'll make.

Once I set my wife's expectations about the bugs, we were fine. And we did indeed have issues on our X - FWDs not opening in high heat, autopilot issues, LTE going out. Everything has been fixed with either a mobile tech or a firmware update, and yes, it is frustrating. But we would do it again in a heartbeat -- and didn't hesitate to replace our X with a Raven X last month. And we're picking up a Model 3 Performance this weekend. I expect a few more bugs, but Tesla is just in a class all by itself. The alternatives are just not tenable.

10K miles no bugs. i hope i didnt jinx it
 
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diplomat33

Well-Known Member
Aug 3, 2017
7,114
8,159
Terre Haute, IN USA
I'm thinking of getting a 3 or an X. Both have terrible ratings and predicted reliability in my CR app. But everyone I know has nothing but good things to say about them. What gives?

CR is not gospel truth. CR is still just the personal opinion of a few people. I would recommend that you take a look at a Model 3 and do a test drive. Make up your own mind.
 

brobinson

Member
May 23, 2018
621
639
Ohio
If you read my signature, you'll see I am a former owner.
I had about 80000 miles on it. Model S.
I love(d) the car ... the service became so bad that it became a liability.
Might buy again IF
- they fix their firmware; V8, browser, stop making games, etc.
- add adequate service centers, USA and Europe, with a maximum "gap" similar to other manufacturers.
- support those centers
I saw their best (2013?) and their worst (now) so today, yes, I recommend against buying until they get their act together

You're hopeless if you think that Tesla's overall quality is worse today than they were in 2013.
 

bhzmark

Active Member
Jul 21, 2013
3,426
5,167
CR is not gospel truth. CR is still just the personal opinion of a few people. I would recommend that you take a look at a Model 3 and do a test drive. Make up your own mind.
Or better, get the opinion of a large sample (not just the vocal and disgruntled) of people who own have owned and lived with Tesla for many years.

One redeeming thing about CR is that they do that with their customer satisfaction surveys. Although I will be keen to watch them try to change the methodology so that Tesla doesn't keep winning as they currently do:

upload_2019-8-9_8-16-6.png


Car Brands Ranked by Owner Satisfaction

Model 3 is the single most satisfying car and Model S also joins it in the top 10.

10 Most Satisfying Cars


And Model X doesn't make the top 10 overall, but wins its class:
upload_2019-8-9_8-17-14.png


Car Brands Ranked by Owner Satisfaction


That is the data that I'll bet the anti-Tesla luddites at CR are steaming about when they aren't testing fabric softeners.
 

Swampgator

Active Member
Apr 27, 2016
1,553
3,045
Florida
I have 23K miles on my Model 3. I had a dashboard rattle that was fixed at the Tesla shop.
Other than that the car has been very reliable. Except for software glitches. I do have those frequently. If you are OK with that and can wait for the next OTA update that usually fixes the glitches, then Tesla cars a very reliable. I have also had to do zero maintenance on my car. I would have already had 2 oil changes on a gas car.

The thing is CR counts a software bug against the overall reliability. So Teslas will always be worse than ICE cars. I personally would rather have my screen reboot while driving than my engine blow a rod. The screen reboot issue was fixed OTA. As for the blown engine: not so much.
 

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