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First Year Ownership Costs for Model S - Incredible Value

Discussion in 'Model S' started by mshuang, Feb 16, 2016.

  1. mshuang

    mshuang Member

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    Location:
    Southern CA
    I'm almost a year into owning my Model S (a month and half away), and of my previous cars the Model S has had the lowest service and maintenance costs of all the cars I've ever had.

    I think one of the things that amazes me day to day is how much is included with the Model S -- so many things that I paid for in other vehicles is standard. The last new car I bought was a 2001 Toyota Celica. After buying it, I paid around $2500 for a aftermarket GPS/Infotainment/iPod system, and $700 for LoJack to be installed. If I had added Bluetooth integration it would have cost another $200. That's almost $4000 in features that comes standard with the Model S.

    Recently, as I passed the 12,500 mile mark I took my Model S in for the annual inspection. They found that my passenger door handle was malfunctioning and replaced it at no cost. For $600 they replaced my windshield wipers, checked everything, rotated the tires, replaced the batteries on the fobs, and gave me a loaner for the day.

    I drive less now than I did in 2001, and after a year in the Celica, I had accumulated over 20,000 miles. On my Celica, I had to do the following: 6 oil changes, 10k, 15k, and 20k services. Total cost of oil changes and services for the Celica in 2001: $750. That cost does not include loaner rentals when it went in for major services, which could easily add on another $200 or so. On my Celica, I also had to replace tires at 30k (3 years later) for $450. I expect I'll have to do the same for the Model S (if not later -- the amount of tread left after a year is pretty good).

    I was also surprised at the rates for insurance for the two cars : (granted I was younger in 2001, but still). Toyota Celica in 2001: 1500 per six month period. Tesla Model S in 2015: 700 per six month period. In 2016, the Celica is still being insured for $450 per six month period, and the Tesla for $675, which amounts to just a $33 difference per month.

    I've put over 175k miles on the Celica, and probably put in 25k over the course of 15 years into misc service and maintenance costs not including insurance, and 10k worth of gasoline. Taking all the costs into account, I would have been far better off with a Model S in 2001 had they existed.

    I'm really looking forward to owning my Model S for many years to come.
     
  2. Maximus8

    Maximus8 Member

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    I agree that the lower maintenance costs for the MS beats a lot of ICE vehicles. In your comparison, you mentioned the aftermarket cost for Nav and infotainment system. Probably need to mention that a lot has changed in that market from 2001 to 2016. Today, you're probably paying less money for the same features and/or getting more features for the same money.
     
  3. Drivin

    Drivin Member

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    CA
    It is a bit of apples and oranges.
    Oil changes now are at 10000 miles. If you did 6 oil changes in 20000 miles, looks like you were doing them at around 3000 miles.

    I would be surprised if you are going to spend less that 25k over 15 years to maintain a Tesla to 175000 miles (that door handle repair is around $800), and after year 8, issues with the battery and motors will probably be expensive.
    If it costs $600 for an inspection, new batteries and wipers for a car that is practically brand new, it will be interesting to see what that costs when the car has significant wear and tear on it.
     
  4. mshuang

    mshuang Member

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    This is true, although for most automakers (like Lexus), even in 2016, adding a GPS/Infotainment/iPod/Bluetooth integration system is a $3500 option.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Yes, I was doing oil changes every 3k or so.

    $600 every year for 15 years would only be 9k. If yearly costs for the Celica had remained at $750 for the 15 years, that would be something, but they did increase substantially through the years. These days, the upkeep of the Celica is almost twice that of 2001 -- it's about $300 for minor service and replacement parts and $600 for major service and parts -- this is not due to the cost of parts but the rise in cost of labor.

    Yes, I am curious as well as to what the Model S will cost from year 8 onwards -- but for now I'm just ecstatic that one year of ownership has resulted in savings of several years of ICE ownership.
     
  5. drsaab

    drsaab Member

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    It's not much less than a mercedes s class. The 10k is $250 20k is usually $500 the 30k is $250 and 40k is $700 and the 50k is $250. Needs brakes probably at 50k and tranny flush at 70k which would be about $600 each.

    Your 12.5k service should have been $300 with the new pricing. You should inquire about that.
     
  6. mshuang

    mshuang Member

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    I will. Thanks!
     
  7. StaceyS

    StaceyS Member

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    Jul 10, 2015
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    Location:
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    I'm 8 months in to my first year of ownership and so far, I think I've blown my previous ICE's costs out of the water, although these aren't specifically the Model S's fault.

    Specifically, my snow tires and wheels were about $600 more than the snow and wheel package I bought for my last car. Additionally, I bought the Chademo adapter ($400), and a handful of extra UMC adapters ($135), a NEMA 14-50 extension cord, as well as a tire iron ($20) and a scissor jack ($40). We travel long distance in our Model S, and we felt these items were probably smart to have.

    Aside from those expenditures, the Model S is doing great, mainly due to us having driven over 10,000 miles so far, the majority of those have been Supercharger provided miles, in other words, free!
     

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