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First Tesla - "Meh" experience so far

Discussion in 'Model S: Ordering, Production, Delivery' started by doubleohwhat, Sep 9, 2016.

  1. doubleohwhat

    doubleohwhat Member

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    Location:
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    Hi Guys,

    It looks like I'm finally joining the club and adding a Tesla to the Birmingham, AL area. I had been playing around with the idea of getting a Tesla for a couple of years and after a very sour experience at my local BMW dealership I decided to take the plunge about two weeks ago and ordered on August 27th. I was hoping that would be the start of an awesome experience but it has definitely turned out to be less than that.

    On August 29th, I was contacted via phone by an owner advisor from the Marietta, GA location. They were pleasant but very much to the point and it was obvious they were going down a list of items they had to cover. So could have been more pleasant but no complaints at all. I later received an email from this person introducing me to my "Delivery Experience Specialist". The email made it clear that this delivery specialist would be my primary point of contact until delivery. Sounded great and I had just received an email from my contact at Alliant asking me to reply with my delivery specialist CC'd in. Sent the email and immediately got a reply from the delivery specialist stating they were out of the office without email access through Aug 31st. So the owner advisor handed me off to someone who wasn't even available at the moment. Odd, a bit unprofessional but no big deal really.

    Anyway, I had already booked a test drive at the Marietta, GA location for August 31st so I could look at a few options in person before confirming the order. Unfortunately, a family matter popped up the morning of the 31st and I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to make it in time (I was running about an hour behind). So I called them at 9:15AM CST (10:15 EST) and asked if they had any other open time slots later in the day. After ten minutes on the phone, they admitted that no one with access to the calendar was in the store. So I asked if someone could either call or text me once they could figure out if they had a later time slot. Never heard a thing. Tried calling back later on, was put on hold and no one ever returned. Owner advisor didn't pick up the phone nor did the delivery specialist (wasn't expecting it but tried anyway). The Marietta store is a 160 Miles/2.5 hour drive so I just gave up and confirmed the order a I had placed it since I didn't have any other free days to make the trip before the order auto-confirmed. So ordered Aug 27th, confirmed Aug 31st.

    Moving on to today, I called the Marietta location asking about getting the car delivered to my house as I'm having a bit of range anxiety about the drive home after pickup since I ordered a S60 (will explain why down below). Despite google maps putting the shortest route home at exactly 160 miles (apparently the cut-off for home delivery) I was told that home delivery was not an option. So I guess the first time I'm in the car I'll have to drive like a freaking granny in order to get home. Oh and the delivery specialist has been CC'd in on several additional emails with the Alliant contact and have yet to hear a peep.

    So basically, I feel like the employees at the Marietta location aren't as attentive as they should be. Easy enough for a good manager to fix and not a big deal in the long run but just a heads up that perhaps people in Alabama should consider the Nashville location instead. I called the Nashville location a little while ago with some questions and they were super helpful.

    On to the car I ordered!:

    Since 2011 I've been driving a BMW 550i with the m-sport package and all the bells and whistles. That made sense when I was single, and traveled back and forth between Birmingham and the gulf coast every other week. These days, I'm basically a stay at home/work from home dad and the poor 550i only saw around 2200 miles last year (and all of those within 50 miles of the house - maybe 3% freeway). Also, any trips are taken in my wife's SUV. So as much as I would love a 90D, a 60 makes a lot more sense for my needs since I can always unlock the rest of the battery if I ever need it. I also plan on keeping this car until the eight year battery warranty runs out. So there's no need to let a more expensive vehicle spend 85% of its life sitting in the garage depreciating. So:

    Midnight Silver Metallic - I would have really liked the solid black but figured this would be easier to maintain
    Solid roof - I've never cared for sun-moon roofs. Just a personal thing. I also don't want XM
    Standard 19" Wheels - I've busted WAY too many tires on the 550 thanks to the 21" wheels
    Black Headliner - No kiddo leaving marks on the white!
    Matte Obeche - Tired of the glossy look. Just wanted something different
    Black NexGen Seats - Wanted leather
    Rear while drive (no D) - All wheel drive just not needed for getting groceries
    No auto-pilot - I rarely drive on roads where this would be useful. Again, can be turned on later if I want it.
    Premium package - Mostly for the powered lift-gate
    Regular Suspension - Don't want the hassle of repair later on. Climate (no snow) nor terrain justifies air suspension.
    No Sub-zero - No need
    No Ultra High Fidelity Sound - Not in the car long enough to justify it and I don't want XM
    No Rear Facing Seats - I will be hauling my (1) kiddo. No others. So no need for the extra seats

    So basically I've ordered myself a luxury but low on frills daily driver for errands. When it comes time to replace my wife's SUV we'll probably order a model x with a lot more features since it will be used for trips.

    Lastly, I want to comment on how great the guys over at Alliant are. I had initially planned on just paying cash for the Tesla but sent in a application to Alliant when I saw how low their rates are. I've never had a finance application handled so quickly and with such great communication despite it being handled 100% over the internet/phone. My contact over there was even able to answer a few questions about the order/delivery process since the Tesla delivery person has been a no show.
     
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  2. Ormond

    Ormond Member

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    You are ahead of me in the process. My Tesla Store in Jacksonville, Florida has been excellent. Everyone that I have dealt with has been friendly and very knowledgeable.

    What interest rate/term did Alliant quote?
     
  3. doubleohwhat

    doubleohwhat Member

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    I honestly think the Marietta store just needs better management and training. Everyone I have talked to that has visited other stores have nothing but praise and as I said earlier, the Nashville store was quite helpful.

    Alliant quoted 1.9% over 78 months. Not gonna pull invested funds out when that kind of rate is available.

    I actually just checked the My Tesla page and it now says "Your Tesla is in production" That's different from the "Your car is in the queue" message it said yesterday. It seems to be moving a little faster than I thought it would. I was trying to aim for the 1st or 2nd week of October for delivery because I'll be out of town the last two weeks of this month.
     
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  4. Canuck

    Canuck Active Member

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    I predict your "Meh" will change to "YEAH!" after you get your car and start driving it.

    Tesla is growing too fast in too short of a time (which is not necessarily a bad thing) but like all new companies with growing pains from going from small to large, the days of excellent, personalized service usually become a thing of the past, at least across the board. With more and more store and service centers being opened, and new employees being hired, it's nearly impossible to have excellent sales and service at every location. That's much easier with a smaller company.
     
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  5. Pdub2015

    Pdub2015 Member

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    Wheaton, MD
    Congratulations on your purchase! And welcome to the site, there are a lot of knowledgeable people here... Unfortunately, I'm not one of them! I've come here to learn...

    So did I miss something, or did you actually buy your Tesla without ever driving one?
     
  6. doubleohwhat

    doubleohwhat Member

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    I'm definitely hoping so. As long as the car is as it should be on delivery day all will be okay. If there are flaws then I might not be able to resist ripping into the Marietta people for letting me drive over for delivery without them going over the car closely for issues. Once they get the supercharger built near Huntsville, AL I'll just do the service in Nashville.

    You are correct. No test drive. Not a first for me though. I ordered my 550i from Germany without having ever been behind the wheel of one. At the time I was looking to order there wasn't a single 550i on a lot anywhere within a two to three hour drive. They had just overhauled that model and very few dealers had them at that point.
     
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  7. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

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    You should be fine. Tell you DS your Model S needs to be charged to 100% at time of pick up. Go to www.evtripplanner.com and enter your route to reassure yourself that you will have enough energy to get home.
    Interesting. While I am optimistic that you will love the Model S, it is nothing like buying a new BMW without a test drive. Let us know how it goes...
     
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  8. doubleohwhat

    doubleohwhat Member

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    It's in the yellow. Thus the anxiety. I should be fine as long as it's just me in the car and I drive slowish. You can punch in "marietta, ga" to "hoover, al" to see the route I'd be taking. "Rated Miles Used" is 179.

    If they're going to stop doing the home deliveries except to extremely remote locations, you think they would at least enable the full battery on a S60 for the first six hours or something to help people get home with peace of mind. Odds are I'll never need the full battery again because I'll easily be able to make Nashville for service once they complete the north Alabama supercharger (which I've been told is under construction now). Other than the service trips I'd be surprised if I ever need more than 100 miles of range in a single day.

    Meh. I test drove a Volt and was okay with it. I seriously doubt I could possibly hate the model s worse than I hate the rate the BMW sucks gas and oil.
     
  9. cgiGuy

    cgiGuy Member

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    Use a more accurate tool like evtripplaner.com to look at everything. I don't know your final destination, but Tesla to Birmingham looks like it will eat up 170 of you 210 rated miles going 71 mph. Not Mario Andretti speeds, but not "granny" speed by any means.

    EV Trip Planner

    I always play it a little conservative at the start and then bump up speed as I get closer, when I know I'm in the clear.
     
  10. Canuck

    Canuck Active Member

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    Don't assume that. Call, and call again, before you pick it up making sure it is charged to 100% or it might not be.
     
  11. davidc18

    davidc18 Member

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    Go slow! (60-65) and you should be okay. Enjoy the car.
     
  12. Gwgan

    Gwgan Almost a wagon

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    What's this about a SC in Northern Alabama? Nothing on Supercharger.info yet. Huntsville? It certainly would fill a big hole.
     
  13. Alketi

    Alketi Member

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    Just remember with the Model S to baby it for the first 500 miles to let the piston rings seat and the camshaft bearings wear evenly. Change the oil at 20 miles and then again at 1000. :D

    Seriously, welcome to the future..
     
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  14. LargeHamCollider

    LargeHamCollider Battery cells != scalable

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    Speed has a huge affect on range, I believe the range anxiety for the trip back is unnecessary if you are willing to slow to 65 if necessary.
     
  15. DiamondDave

    DiamondDave Member

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    Congrats on your purchase. Hope the ownership experience will be better than the ordering experience thus far.

    FWIW, I recently drove to Tuscaloosa. I charged up to almost 100% in Chatanooga, 262 rm, and drove the speed limit at first, then 65 instead of 70. The car was loaded - five passengers and both trunks just about full of luggage. If memory serves, I was at about 90 rm passing through Birmingham and made it to Tuscaloosa with 28 miles left. I have 21s, so your efficiency should be better. So I think you'll get home fine, just watch the trip screen on the energy app.

    Now what's this about a supercharger in Northern Al under construction? On Tesla's "by the end of 2016" supercharger map (notoriously unreliable) there's been a dot in Birmingham for a while. A supercharger here would have made my trip much much easier. I spent hours and hours charging at an RV park in Tuscaloosa (and thank god that was there because regular 30A level 2 chargers, few and far between in Alabama, would have taken much longer).
     
  16. evzach

    evzach Member

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    Who are you working with? I worked with Morgan at Jax, had a great experience. I take delivery next week!
     
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  17. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

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    > making sure it is charged to 100% [Canuck]

    Before leaving the Tesla shop be sure that all AC and blowers etc are turned OFF and then plug in charger to top off to a real 100%. You really really want to reach home on your first trip.
    --
     
  18. doubleohwhat

    doubleohwhat Member

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    Thanks for all the encouragement! I'm sure I'll be fine getting home if I stick to the speed limit or a little under.

    As for the north Alabama supercharger, "under construction" was a poor choice of words. This is exactly what I was told by the Nashville store when I was asking about one in northern Alabama so I could do service in Nashville: "They're working on it now and it should definitely be finished by the time you need service". My guess is that they have the location selected and are waiting out the 3rd quarter before spending money on it.

    So I guess that could mean anything from "under construction" to "they just picked a site". Sorry for the confusion!

    There's been a dot around Huntsville for a while as well. If I had to guess I'd say that one will end up being located somewhere around Decatur. The Birmingham location could be anywhere. The best location for would be somewhere around the I20/I65 interchange but that's a pretty rough area of town. They'd have to guard the freaking copper wires overnight during the construction.

    Will do. Fortunately the weather should be mild the first of second week of October and I shouldn't really need much heating or cooling on the way home.
     
  19. hacer

    hacer Member

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    You can also charge at the 32A J1772 charger at Waco, GA and grab a bite to eat at the truck stop. An hour there should give you another 23 miles of range making the trip a comfortable range without going slow.
    70 Murphy Campus Blvd., Bremen, GA 30182

    There are a couple of other options as well.
     
  20. Ormond

    Ormond Member

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    Morgan and Chris. Both are so enthusiastic and knowledgeable.
     
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