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Frustrated with general lack of response from Tesla

OverZealous

Member
Oct 15, 2014
68
0
Louisville, KY
I'm getting pretty tired of sending off emails about the doubled-referral discount and getting no answers or getting the run around.

Here's the setup:

  • Before I ordered, I had a Virginia code and talked to a sales rep in Cincinnati. He had not heard of the doubled bonus, and the bonus did not show up (which I now know is expected).
    • I went ahead and ordered my car, happy with the regular referral discount. We were really hoping for the extra discount because getting this car is a stretch for us (as it is for many buyers), and the extra $1000 would make it a lot easier to deal with paying to install the electrical plug and other related costs.
    • The sales rep asked if I knew the Virginia driver personally, I said no, and not really believing about the doubled referral, let him supply me with a different (I'm assuming local) referral code.
  • After ordering my vehicle, I didn't hear from Tesla until 11 days after I placed the order, after the car was already confirmed, and only after I mentioned something on the forums.
    • I wasn't that upset, but I feel like this is surprising for what's basically a $100K vehicle.
  • After more information came out about the Virginia referral bonus, I was pretty upset, since I had given up the VA code for the other one, and I wrote my DS asking if there was anything that could be done. This is still well before the car entered production.
    • My DS "looked into it", but told me I could only qualify for the bonus if I lived in VA and took delivery there. I was surprised, but figured at least I didn't lose anything.
    • It's since been explained, in different places, that this is completely false.
  • Once the notice came out about the Ohio referral bonus, I decided to try again, hoping the sales rep had used an OH code (since I still don't know for sure).
    • Last Saturday (August 29), I was at a Louisville Tesla event, and talked to one of the Cincinnati Tesla reps there. He knew my sales rep, said it shouldn't be an issue to apply the discount, because that money was basically being absorbed if it couldn't be given to the referrer.
    • I also wrote my original sales rep back about it on Monday. I've been very nice, and just trying to figure out what, if anything, can be done.
    • Also on Monday, my car went into production.
    • Having not heard back from anyone, I wrote one of the representatives at the Louisville on Thursday, to ask a different question, but have not heard back from them, either.
  • Friday, my car exited production.
  • It's now been a full week since, and I haven't heard anything from anyone, other than my DS responding to an email I sent about my trade-in (to say I'm not trading in my vehicle).

A few points:

  • I realize they might be a lot busier than expected with the active Model X roll out. But that's not really my fault—they set up the promotion at the same time they were releasing the MX, and I think that's poor foresight. I don't like that I'm getting ignored, I'm still spending the money to buy the vehicle.
  • I realize that I'm basically asking them to give me money, after I've placed the order. I probably would have let it go if they had simply told me that it was not possible because I already placed the order. However, I've gotten almost no honest answers about this. It's either an excuse, "I'll look into it", or lately, what feels like being ignored.
  • This won't make or break the purchase. We'd already budgeted for the price we were quoted. But, again, this has been a relatively poor experience over this issue.

I don't feel like my purchase experience has lived up to others mentioned online, I've had fairly minimal communication. Also, the car is being sent to Nashville (3+ hours from me) rather than Cincinnati (~2 hours), so I'm have to have delivered to the house, because I can't possibly spend 6 hours driving, with my wife and a 3 year old, just to get the vehicle. While home delivery is awesome, this was never mentioned when I was ordering the vehicle in Cincinnati.

I don't really have a question, I just felt the need to vent. Sorry for how long this got, but thanks for reading it. :smile:
 

Max*

Charging
Apr 8, 2015
6,672
3,719
NoVa
Tesla sucks at communication. My DS was non-existent. Questions took a week to answer.

I'd escalate it, but that's just me.
 

cmu5p

Member
Feb 3, 2015
233
44
Shenandoah Valley, VA
Totally off-topic, but I think its pretty cool that we are at VINs>102K. Wonder who got 100,000?

Sorry for your frustration. I promise you will forget it once you start driving the car, kinda reminds me of childbirth.
 

bonaire

Active Member
Aug 24, 2013
2,482
897
USA
"I can't possibly spend 6 hours driving, with my wife and a 3 year old"

Can't they stay home while you go get it?

I have to wonder if the Model 3 will even allow for communication or be setup to be entirely "computer status only". They can't afford the DS experience with the lower priced car.
 

OverZealous

Member
Oct 15, 2014
68
0
Louisville, KY
Can't they stay home while you go get it?

  1. I don't really want to get it on my own—that's half the fun.
  2. It wouldn't be fair to make my wife watch our daughter all day just so I can get a car.
  3. It's her car, too.
  4. Literally, it's her car, too; she has to sign for it as well!
  5. But the most important reason: How would I get there if someone doesn't drive me? :biggrin:

Honestly, we're divided on the deliver vs pick up, because there's an awesomeness to having the car rolled off in front of your house, but we miss out on the whole experience picking up the car. The real issue is that nobody ever mentioned that the car would be going through Nashville. They just opened a brand new service center in Cincinnati (like, upgraded an old dealership, it's awesome), so I would have never guessed it would end up somewhere 100 miles further from my home (roughly 300 miles from where I was sitting when I ordered it).
 

stevej119

Member
Aug 19, 2014
224
23
Northern California
I'm getting pretty tired of sending off emails about the doubled-referral discount and getting no answers or getting the run around.

Here's the setup:

  • Before I ordered, I had a Virginia code and talked to a sales rep in Cincinnati. He had not heard of the doubled bonus, and the bonus did not show up (which I now know is expected).
    • I went ahead and ordered my car, happy with the regular referral discount. We were really hoping for the extra discount because getting this car is a stretch for us (as it is for many buyers), and the extra $1000 would make it a lot easier to deal with paying to install the electrical plug and other related costs.
    • The sales rep asked if I knew the Virginia driver personally, I said no, and not really believing about the doubled referral, let him supply me with a different (I'm assuming local) referral code.
This is news to me. You're saying that you, a non-resident of Virginia, can get the double referral discount simply by using the code from someone in Virginia? My expectation would be that ultimately you find out that this is not correct. My understanding was always that residents of Virginia get the double discount. If anyone can use a Virginia code and get double discount, who would use the referral code from anyone in any other state? That would make no sense. Making no sense, though, does not mean it can't be true...
 

AnOutsider

S532 # XS27
Apr 3, 2009
11,957
200
This is news to me. You're saying that you, a non-resident of Virginia, can get the double referral discount simply by using the code from someone in Virginia? My expectation would be that ultimately you find out that this is not correct. My understanding was always that residents of Virginia get the double discount. If anyone can use a Virginia code and get double discount, who would use the referral code from anyone in any other state? That would make no sense. Making no sense, though, does not mean it can't be true...

Considering the VA and OH change was because law in those states meant that the residents of those states couldn't receive compensation, I see no reason why it would relate to the buyer and not the seller.

Basically: if I live in VA and tell someone in NJ about Tesla, I can't be compensated for it, so my referral gets all the $$.

As for it not making sense, well the goal is to reward folks who drive sales for Tesla. It's not exactly geared to those who are seeking a referral code, but more towards those who are actively promoting the car.
 

OverZealous

Member
Oct 15, 2014
68
0
Louisville, KY
Take the bus. Amtrak. Make it an adventure.

Ha—and turn 6 hours of travel into... 10 hours or something? :tongue:

- - - Updated - - -

You're saying that you, a non-resident of Virginia, can get the double referral discount simply by using the code from someone in Virginia? [...] who would use the referral code from anyone in any other state? That would make no sense. Making no sense, though, does not mean it can't be true...

That's what everyone has been saying, though. If you follow the comments on Reddit and here, the response has been that the buyer, no matter who it is, gets the double referral bonus.

If you read through the email sent from Tesla, you'll see they make no reference to the locality of the buyer.

Honestly, if that was the case, you'd think we'd have heard my story from more people. I really can't believe anyone else has tried to use a VA (or OH) code and been told "too bad, so sad", and not mentioned it.
 

electrish

I Sing the Body Electric
Nov 8, 2014
242
6
Ohio
That's how I understood it, that the buyer would get the entire $2,000 credit if they had a referral from OH or VA, when I received the notification from Tesla.
And I would assume that this is irrespective of where the buyer is located.

What I don't get is that the sales rep here basically took the referral away from the VA referrer and assigned it to someone local.
Am I understanding this correctly? Someone must have been desperate to get an invite to the party at the Gigafactory! :wink:
 

OverZealous

Member
Oct 15, 2014
68
0
Louisville, KY
What I don't get is that the sales rep here basically took the referral away from the VA referrer and assigned it to someone local.
Am I understanding this correctly?

Yes and no. Yes, that's basically what happened, but it's not really the sales rep's fault. Since, at the time, I didn't really believe the whole double bonus situation, I agreed to let them change the referral code. This was probably a mistake on my part, but I didn't really know the person receiving the referral bonus either way, so it was basically the same to me. Hell, I didn't even know 100% the person _was_ from Virginia. :smile:
 

jak

Member
Apr 20, 2013
51
26
California
My experience is not as bad as yours.

I told my OA (Owner Advisor) I applied a Virginia referral code, but their web site was only registering 1K discount. He never heard of the 2K discount, but got back to me a few hours later to confirm it to be the case and would put a note on my account for the 2K discount. The DS I've been assigned has been pretty good at responding to my questions and requests within a day or two. Unfortunately, I just got my MVPA (Motor Vehicle Purchase Agreement) this Saturday and it now says zero referral discount, so back to getting it straightened out.
 

Sm4llz

Member
May 5, 2015
213
49
Colorado Springs, CO
My experience is not as bad as yours.

I told my OA (Owner Advisor) I applied a Virginia referral code, but their web site was only registering 1K discount. He never heard of the 2K discount, but got back to me a few hours later to confirm it to be the case and would put a note on my account for the 2K discount. The DS I've been assigned has been pretty good at responding to my questions and requests within a day or two. Unfortunately, I just got my MVPA (Motor Vehicle Purchase Agreement) this Saturday and it now says zero referral discount, so back to getting it straightened out.

Any update on this? I used a Virginia code as well but only the $1000 is showing.
 

andrewket

Well-Known Member
Dec 20, 2012
5,704
1,525
Considering the VA and OH change was because law in those states meant that the residents of those states couldn't receive compensation, I see no reason why it would relate to the buyer and not the seller.

Basically: if I live in VA and tell someone in NJ about Tesla, I can't be compensated for it, so my referral gets all the $$.

As for it not making sense, well the goal is to reward folks who drive sales for Tesla. It's not exactly geared to those who are seeking a referral code, but more towards those who are actively promoting the car.

Only the referrer must be in VA or OH, since that person can't accept the bonus, so it's given to the purchaser instead. The OP should not have allowed the DS to swap codes. In fact, this is really suspicious. It's possible the DS is trying to funnel orders to someone they know, which would definitely be against the spirit of the program.
 

Troy

Active Member
Aug 24, 2015
1,966
6,127
I recommend checking out this topic on Reddit:

After multiple calls with Tesla Sales in HQ, as well as the store in Tyson's Corner VA, I've learned the following:
  • This is all about not directly compensating current owners in these states from being direct salespeople. It doesn't matter where the new buyer is, they can take advantage of the extra $1000 off that was supposed to go to the current owner
  • The new buyer will only see $1000 off initially, using a referral code from a Virginia or Ohio owner. This is because the owner's credit is not realized until the buyer's deposit becomes non-refundable
  • The new buyer and their DS must work with Tesla HQ to manually map over the extra discount. Once this is done, the discount will appear on the Motor Vehicle Purchase Agreement before you complete delivery
  • What does the VA and OH owner see? As referrals get confirmed, they temporarily see their 'credit' go up $1000, but once it gets mapped out, the credit goes down again. I have seen this with three referrals who used my code already
 
Last edited:

OverZealous

Member
Oct 15, 2014
68
0
Louisville, KY
EDIT: Ignore this, read the message below.

Update:

I just got off the phone with the store manager in Cincinnati, after writing a lengthy email this morning. This referral program has kinda gone haywire for Tesla, apparently.

Anyway, the good news: I'm going to be all set, the referral code we used was from Ohio, and I will be getting the $2000 referral fee. Apparently they aren't actually sure how this is going to work, since they haven't even had a car come in that was using the referral fee yet.

So my advice: stick to your guns and elevate if necessary.


The sad thing is this has negatively affected my view of Tesla before I've even gotten the car, because I shouldn't have had to go through all these hoops. A large part of me wishes I had never heard of the VA/OH referral thing, but it does help cover the costs for a lot of the extra purchases we will make, some of which will be in Tesla products, anyway.
 
Last edited:

tomas

Out of warranty...
Supporting Member
Oct 22, 2012
4,297
3,916
Santa Barbara/New York
Update:

I just got off the phone with the store manager in Cincinnati, after writing a lengthy email this morning. This referral program has kinda gone haywire for Tesla, apparently.

Anyway, the good news: I'm going to be all set, the referral code we used was from Ohio, and I will be getting the $2000 referral fee. Apparently they aren't actually sure how this is going to work, since they haven't even had a car come in that was using the referral fee yet.

So my advice: stick to your guns and elevate if necessary.

The sad thing is this has negatively affected my view of Tesla before I've even gotten the car, because I shouldn't have had to go through all these hoops. A large part of me wishes I had never heard of the VA/OH referral thing, but it does help cover the costs for a lot of the extra purchases we will make, some of which will be in Tesla products, anyway.

My suggesting to all is to not get wound up over 1% of the purchase price of the vehicle in a discount/rebate program that is new, did not anticipate the quirks of a couple of state laws, and is being rolled out to an organization that where the average employee tenure is probably well <6 months. It appears Tesla is rolling with the punches, and "doing the right thing". Just takes some time. That is their track record, so - over my 1+ year as reservation holder and 3 subsequent years as owner, they've established a great deal of trust on my part. I'm willing to be patient because I've seen them consistently "do right". I've also learned that they shoot from the hip, so often have to mend things or adapt quickly. I actually admire that... makes them more agile, though I understand it tests patience of people who have not yet established the trust.
 

OverZealous

Member
Oct 15, 2014
68
0
Louisville, KY
CRAP

No, no, this did not work out. Never mind what I said. Just got off the phone with my DS, and he absolutely re-confirmed with me that I am not eligible for the $2000, that the wording in the original email is almost completely backwards.

Only buyers taking delivery and registering in Ohio or Virginia will be eligible for the bonus. I'm pretty sick of this back-and-forth crap. They screwed up with the emails about the referral, to be honest. They should have released a complete plan, not some half-assed email that everyone is going to make a bunch of assumptions about.

If anyone can point me to someone who has actually taken delivery out-of-state with an OH or VA purchase, and received the $2000 bonus, I would appreciate it. Otherwise, there's going to be a bunch of extremely unhappy buyers in the near future.

@thomas I appreciate the sentiment, and I almost didn't bother worrying about it originally. But two points:


  • For me, this was less about the money, and more about the misinformation and lack of response. I had already committed to the original price, but I'm getting very different responses from everyone I talk to.
  • It's not just ~1% of the purchase, it's $1000. That pays for the electrical plug in the garage, or a center console, or any number of additional expenses. This is a very expensive car, and there's more than a few people stretching to make it work. It also reduces the tax burden ($60 here, but much more elsewhere).
 

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