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Help needed to find right used Tesla for us

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Graffi, Apr 30, 2017.

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  1. Graffi

    Graffi Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2017
    Messages:
    72
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    A year ago I surprised my wife by setting up a test drive in a Tesla Model S here at the San Diego showroom. Don't get me wrong, we LOVE our Leaf which we have owned for over 3.5 years and if anything ever happened to it we would gladly get another. However, we do take long road trips throughout the year, with several LONG ones during each summer. A 2-week (or 3-week) cross-country trip of from 7,000 to 9,000 miles; a 1-week trip of about 2,500 to 3,500 miles; and several shorter trips of 1,200 miles or less. Anyway, she fell in love with the Tesla and made me sign up for the Model 3 that evening.

    Now, a year later, we are thinking that we would be better off with a Model S, 85 Kwh or greater, and anywhere from 2013 to 2015 Model year. I would be happy with any, but my wife wants the dark blue. I have kept my eyes open on Craigslist San Diego lately but think there must be a better source. The closer we get to our departure date (8-weeks from now) the more we want to make the long cross-country trip in our NEW (used) Blue Tesla S. We are thinking that we need the larger capacity battery, Tech Package (Auto pilot, auto parking - my wife really loved this one), and the white leather interior.

    What I would love from others that have been driving their Tesla S for a while, even on long trips, is your recommendations of:

    1. What other sources can I find used Tesla's for sale.

    2. What features should we get: Must have, Should have, Would be nice to have, Don't need. Is any Model year preferred over another?

    3. Budget I should need for the various Model Year, mileage, and options included.

    4. What trip planning tools does Tesla have that will not only get us to our destinations, but plan our Super-charger station stops. Does it give up to date access and availability?

    5. Any other recommendations you think we would need when searching for our new EV.

    Thank you all for your assistance in this matter.
     
  2. BrettS

    BrettS Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2017
    Messages:
    391
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    I can't speak much to the long distance aspect as I've only have my new (to me) 2015 Model S for a month now, but I can say that autopilot is definitely worth spending a little extra on. I take a 120-130 mile round trip two to three times a week and being able to turn on autopilot during that drive makes it much less fatigueing. For a long distance trip autopilot would be even more useful.

    If you are interested in autopilot, though, you need to keep in mind that it was introduced at the very end of 2014. So that rules out all the 2013 and most of the 2014 cars for you.
     
  3. boaterva

    boaterva Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2016
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    2,715
    Location:
    Northern Virginia, USA
    And, of course, if you want AP 2.0, it restricts you to starting last October. Which is very restrictive. ;)

    There are several sites for CPOs including ev-cpo.com and teslainventory.com; Tesla also has CPOs that are not listed. If you call them you can find vehicles not in the system. CPOs recommended for the warranty.

    As for general information on trip planning, there are several apps and websites to choose from; the built-in nav gives you info supercharger status and availability.

    Lots of threads on trip planning around, some stickied, some in User Interface or Charging (and welcome to TMC!).
     
  4. mbhforum

    mbhforum Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2016
    Messages:
    509
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    The Dark Blue color was discontinued I believe in 2014, so bear that in mind. It might be hard to find that color with AP 1.0. It's the color I wanted so I ended up with Modnight Silver mettalic instead which I like as well.
     
  5. BrokerDon

    BrokerDon Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2014
    Messages:
    436
    Location:
    Newport Coast, CA
    Must have:
    Supercharger Enabled
    Tech Package with Autopilot: Tech Package for real time navigation, Supercharger occupancy. Autopilot to make driving long distances very stress free.​

    Should have:
    Dual Motor All Wheel Drive: Allows you to drive easier in snow... and supposedly has longer range​

    Would be nice to have:
    90D or 100D: More range allows you to skip Superchargers on "road trips"
    Smart Air Suspension: Allows suspension to be lowered for slightly better range, increases ground clearance for curbs, and adjusts ride height for larger payloads (4+ passengers, luggage, etc.)
    Subzero Weather Package: "Bun warmers" are great in cold weather and more energy efficient heating than running climate control heater... even in normally sunny SoCal​

    Don't need:
    Performance models (P85, P85D, P90D, P100D). I love having the additional power of our P85D, especially coming from a Corvette Z06... but it's definitely not necessary.
    21" wheels & tires: 21" reduce range, cost more and are more prone to failure from road hazards
    Avoid:
    P85+: 21" staggered wheels complicate rotations... and many owners burn through inside tread of rear tires from the very aggressive P85+ "Plus Suspension" settings
    Plus Suspension: IF you don't like a more firm "sporty" ride. We have the Plus Suspension on our March 2015 built P85D and love it... but again we came from a VERY "sporty" Corvette Z06 (factory track car)
    GREAT source for used Teslas: CPO Consolidator http://ev-cpo.com The creator HankLloydRight is a TMC member, incredibly knowledgeable, and was super helpful in helping us find our "unicorn" 2015 P85D with the Plus Suspension with the exact specifications of our ideal Tesla Build-To-Order. Thanks again Hank!
     
    • Like x 2
    • Informative x 1
  6. RichardD

    RichardD Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2017
    Messages:
    491
    Location:
    Texas
    To find a used CPO tesla I would look at my original post as to who to talk to at Tesla because I got very lucky in dealing with Brett Seavey:
    Here is a few sites that help with finding your car by specs:

    EV-CPO / Tesla CPO, Preowned, Used and Inventory Listings / ev-cpo.com
    teslainventory.com

    Both are good, I think its really just down to your preference.

    I would highly encourage buying it in Denver and driving it back. The Denver team is fantastic!

    Congrats on your soon to be purchase.

    If you choose a new one or factory demo unit instead of CPO:
    Referral | Tesla
    That will get you 1000 off, as I have not used my referral before I think I might get something too.

    In any case good luck and send a message if you need help. I had a great first buying experience.

    All the best from Texas,
    Richard
     
    • Like x 1
  7. Az_Rael

    Az_Rael Supporting Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    2,531
    Location:
    Palmdale, CA
    This is going to be hard since the white leather was just added in late 2016. If you are OK with other interior colors, your options will open up significantly.
     
  8. myblubu

    myblubu Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2016
    Messages:
    212
    Location:
    Dayton, OH
    Depends on what you decide you want, let me know if you decide on a P85, I can have mine shipped to ya :)
     
  9. Graffi

    Graffi Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2017
    Messages:
    72
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    Many thanks to everyone, both here and on the Tesla site.

    Last week we visited the local Tesla store in San Diego to get further info on what options were available when and other data. We used the computer to build our Ideal Model S, as well as search the CPO older versions. Considering the rebates on purchasing a new one, plus the Autopilot V 2.0, it was worth it to us to get a new one for $20k more than a used one with less capability and 30,000 to 40,000 miles on it already. Therefore last Friday, 5/5/17, we signed up for one.

    Anyway, they found us a new one in Denver, CO. with 900 miles on it (used for giving test drives) with a $7,100 discount. Oh, and this one does have FREE lifetime SC usage. It is a 75D, Pearl White, with lots of good options, nothing missing that we wanted (it has both Enhanced Autopilot and Full Self-Driving capability already paid for). My wife decided she likes it. We found out we could save $2,000 delivery cost and $1,000 in sales taxes by picking it up in Denver. I went online and found a one-way ticket for $42 each. A friend of mine is flying to Denver next month on the same airline and he already got his ticket a few weeks ago for around $450, although I think his is round-trip, Still a lot more expensive than our $84.

    Now we have a 13 hour drive back to San Diego, plus Super Charger stops for recharge. As it is now, when we take road trips we stop for 15 to 20 minutes every 1.5 to 2 hours already for potty breaks and stretching. This way, all our stops will be at the SC stations, not truck stops.

    My wife had already planned one week off of work for 5/15 through 5/19. I teach a class on Mon/Wed nights, and she is taking a class Monday nights, so we are flying out at 6:20am Tuesday, Going to the Denver Tesla service center to pick it up, as well as coaching, then leave Denver for our trip home sometime around 2pm. That should get us through the east Los Angeles traffic by early morning before it gets too bad, and home before 6am Wednesday. Anyway, that still gives me 12 hours before I teach the class, so plenty of time if it takes us longer getting home.

    Then early morning Friday we leave for Disneyland, another 200+ mile round trip with the kids and grandkids. For Memorial weekend the next Friday we are going to San Francisco Bay area for another trip of over 1,000 miles. We are really looking forward to the stress free driving of the autopilot.

    We do LOVE our Leaf and will keep it for many years to come. It will remain our preferred local driver but the Tesla will be our go-to vehicle for longer drives. We are so excited. Now for the learning process so we can fully enjoy all the benefits. Is it reasonable to assume that we can get up to 1,000,000 miles on the Tesla before we wear it out??? That gets the amortization cost down to only $0.10 per mile and $0.05 per mile for electricity (half that or less with SC charging). Maybe another $0.05 per mile for maintenance. Still less than the cost of gas for ICE vehicles.

    Now for home charging. We do have the AV 240v, 30a unit for the Leaf. It will be okay to use it, but I was thinking of installing another 50a breaker on the panel and installing a 240v, NEMA 14-50 outlet for the Tesla EVSE included with the car. The electrical panel is outside the garage so I can install it on the inside wall at the panel. Any thoughts? Should I be looking for a larger amp breaker and connection? We have a 200 amp panel, with a 5kw solar system.

    We will be driving this car over 3,000 miles in the first two weeks, so getting lots of use out of the Supercharger network. Then two weeks later, we will start this summer's cross-country trip of over two weeks and 7,000+ miles. By the end of summer we will probably be close to 15,000 miles on her. My wife has already named her "Pearl". Our Leaf is "Graffi", and our bright blue Lancer is called "Bebe", B-B for bright blue.

    When I mentioned to my wife that this will be a nice "chick magnet" for me, she countered that it will be much better "stud magnet" for her.
     
    • Like x 7
  10. cgiGuy

    cgiGuy Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2013
    Messages:
    1,299
    Location:
    Sacramento, CA
    Congrats! Please make sure you research what to expect out of your AP system and keep your hands on the wheel. Your posts are very thorough, so I expect you already have. But I think this is where some people get themselves into trouble.
     
  11. anonim1979

    anonim1979 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2017
    Messages:
    379
    Location:
    Europe
    Ask Denver shop/Service Center to (force) install newest firmware 17.17.4 if it doesn't have it already.
    As this is first one that is fully usable for the road trips.
     
    • Like x 1
  12. MikeBur

    MikeBur ManualPilot

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2014
    Messages:
    739
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Congratulations! :)
    Whilst I'm sure you're car will be immaculate when you collect it, you may want to get Denver to send a number of outside/inside photos of that actual vehicle to minimize surprises when you arrive.
    Good luck and safe driving!
     
  13. Graffi

    Graffi Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2017
    Messages:
    72
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    just left them a voice message to make sure the update is installed. Thanks....
     
  14. Graffi

    Graffi Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2017
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    72
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    They sent photos on Friday. Thanks.
     
  15. BrokerDon

    BrokerDon Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2014
    Messages:
    436
    Location:
    Newport Coast, CA
    We just drove from Denver to Orange County 2 months ago.

    Tips:
    • Be sure to check wind speed and direction on your route ahead using a weather app... and input that info into EV Trip Planner EV Trip Planner. We've had moderate to high headwinds coming across the desert, usually between Las Vegas and Hesperia.
    • use TeslaWinds for more accurate real time wind affect on your range while driving. Craziest was 50 to 70 mph tailwinds we hit in Glenwood Canyon driving eastbound I-70 into Denver. Awesome for us but so bad going westbound it flipped a couple of semis and completely closed I-70 westbound for hours Tesla Winds and Elevation Web Browser App Tesla Winds also let me know to slow down and/or draft wide high profile vehicles to make it to our next SC. Best draft was a Sprinter van going 75 mph in Mojave desert in 20 to 40 mph headwinds. Autopilot and fully engaged experienced driving and passive passengers required. :cool: YMMV. Also note when you first browse to the app, it will ask you to type in the two API keys you can register for and obtain for free from OpenWeatherMap.org and Geonames.org. I recommend you obtain the API keys on a desktop or laptop browser rather than in the car.
    • use Waze for Tesla Incidents if you're driving above speed limit since it will give you advance notice of highway patrol most of the time... as well as construction, accidents, etc. View Waze Incidents on the Tesla browser
    • Have Tesla "range charge" your new 75D to 100% and pre-condition your climate control right before you leave so you can try to skip Silverthorne SC and go directly to Glenwood Springs. If you manage your speed EVTripPlanner says its doable.
    • Make sure your tire air pressure is correct or even a couple of psi high since it will drop as you your temperature drops or go up in elevation. We didn't do this which required us to add air to all our tires early morning in Green River. was a PITA since only one gas station had air, it required quarters, cost 25¢ a minute, had a short hose requiring our Tesla to be move to fill all 4 tires, and the tire pressure gauge was WAY off. Now we carry a $49.95 ViAir 84P compact portable air compressor bought on eBay and a Safety Seal tire repair kit (for flats). No more hunting for air for our tires. :cool:
    • Holiday Inn Express in Green River was right next door to the Tesla Supercharger ("SC"). We got free breakfast there AND a snack / coffee at the Holiday Inn Express in Richfield where our next Tesla SC was. 2-for-1 food / bathroom / WiFi pit stops and guilt free since we still had our room keys from Green River :cool:
    • Highly recommend skipping the SC in downtown Las Vegas since its a ways off the freeway time & traffic wise and the SC can seem sketchy. Recommend stretching to the SC at Primm or the new South Las Vegas SC instead if your 75D can make it (we have a P85D and skipped Lost Wages SC's completely)
    • El Pollo Loco at Barstow is a 2 minute walk from SC... and has a lot of healthy cheap menu choices. EPL coupons work too. Not sure if your route will stop there but we always stop here.
    • buy a gallon of the -25ºF windshield washer in CO or UT fluid if you're going to snow country in your Tesla again. CA prohibits the sale of low freezing point WSW fluids. Nothing worse than needing your windshield cleaned in subzero temperatures and your WSW fluid is froze solid overnight. Been there, done that in our Jeep Grand Cherokee on an epic CO snowboard road trip. 8-(
    Have a great trip!
     
  16. SPXMike

    SPXMike Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2015
    Messages:
    101
    Location:
    La Habra Heights, CA
    @BrokerDon - Lots of great nuggets in your post. Thank you! Didn't know about the restriction in CA on low freezing point windshield washer fluids. Should have expected that from CA. Great post!
     

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