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I got my car yesterday, initial thoughts...

atmorris8

Member
Oct 15, 2018
10
8
Chaska, MN
2021 Model 3 LR, pearl white / black, aeros, no FSD
Ordered 7/1, delivered to my house on 9/1 in Minnesota

It took less than 10 minutes from the delivery team's arrival to them pulling away in their MYP. I signed 3 forms, confirmed delivery online, and they were off to their next delivery. They didn't seem keen on hanging around while I looked the car over but I wasn't bothered about that.

I spent a couple hours setting everything up, installing a few things, and messing around with settings. All things considered, I'm okay with the build quality. Issues I found so far-
* A couple of greasy fingerprints on the headliner
* Slight misalignment of the passenger side headlight, charge port door, and trunk panel. None are terrible but I made a service appointment to see if they can adjust and make things more flush
* A couple of flaws in the paint - small black mark under the passenger side camera and a small raised bump like a grain of sand in the paint on the rear driver side fender
* An error that said the charge port door may not open by pushing on it, but that seemed to clear after I opened it using the charging cord
* Black streaks on the lips of the wheels that I managed to remove with some detailing spray and elbow grease

I installed a few things I picked up on Amazon straight away... console organizer, Spigen matte screen protector, armrest hidden storage box, silicone cup holder insert, air intake screen, and attempted to install an aluminum pedal set but gave up on the accelerator pedal after 10 minutes of scraping my fingers up and lots of swearing. I will have another go at that this weekend. I have a CF spoiler to install and future plans for tint and PPF, suspension, snow tires on the stock wheels for winter, and aftermarket 19" wheels for summer. I will probably de-badge at least the "Dual Motor" as well.

I had a tee time yesterday afternoon so I only had time to take the car for a quick drive, but I was impressed. I'm coming from a BMW 335i with a manual transmission and M performance exhaust, so to say it's a different experience to drive the Tesla is a massive understatement. Wind noise wasn't bad, and the only interior noise issue I could hear was a creak coming from the front passenger seat that I'll have to try to track down. I've driven my co-worker's older Model 3 LR a few times but have never pushed it, so it was interesting to explore more of the performance capabilities on some country backroads near my house. My initial impression was that the chassis has improved since my co-worker's car was built.

When I got home from golf, my 11 year-old son wanted to play games on it so I let him do the buggy game for a bit, amused him with some fart noises, and then took him and my wife for a short test drive. They were equal parts entertained and terrified, so mission accomplished.
 

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Gauss Guzzler

Safety Score = 7
Dec 27, 2020
538
689
Thousand Oaks, California
Yeah, the delivery people are just delivery people. They are no more interested in discussing the product being delivered than a FedEx driver is. Tesla's #1 priority is to increase production/delivery quantities because that's what they need to stay ahead of the giants. Someday they'll improve the build quality and purchase/delivery experience but for right now they are wise to cut all those corners and focus all their efforts on the production floor.

Service centers don't like to mess with body panel alignment so they'll likely take your car to a local collision repair shop. You'll notice that they disable GPS tracking first so that you can't see where they take it but it'll just be one of the regular body shops in town. Plan on going a few days in a rental or loaner.

The body shop will want to respray everything - that's all they know. My car had a significant black dot in the paint and some dirt in the clearcoat - or so I thought. Turns out they were on the surface, not in it. The black dot polished right off and the dirt washed right off so I was glad that I had asked them to try to fix things without a respray if possible.

The gas pedal cover is nearly impossible to install cold/dry but should be pretty easy after a quick soak in hot water. A tiny bit of dish soap will go a long way as well.
 
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atmorris8

Member
Oct 15, 2018
10
8
Chaska, MN
Yeah, the delivery people are just delivery people. They are no more interested in discussing the product being delivered than a FedEx driver is. Tesla's #1 priority is to increase production/delivery quantities because that's what they need to stay ahead of the giants. Someday they'll improve the build quality and purchase/delivery experience but for right now they are wise to cut all those corners and focus all their efforts on the production floor.

Service centers don't like to mess with body panel alignment so they'll likely take your car to a local collision repair shop. You'll notice that they disable GPS tracking first so that you can't see where they take it but it'll just be one of the regular body shops in town. Plan on going a few days in a rental or loaner.

The body shop will want to respray everything - that's all they know. My car had a significant black dot in the paint and some dirt in the clearcoat - or so I thought. Turns out they were on the surface, not in it. The black dot polished right off and the dirt washed right off so I was glad that I had asked them to try to fix things without a respray if possible.

The gas pedal cover is nearly impossible to install cold/dry but should be pretty easy after a quick soak in hot water. A tiny bit of dish soap will go a long way as well.

I did the hot water soak trick and still couldn't get it on, man I got so annoyed watching the install video on Amazon where the guy just casually slips it on there. I'll give it another go when I'm feeling more patient, good call on the dish soap.

I won't be letting them do any repainting, none of the issues warrant that. I'm guessing the black mark will buff out and the other thing is difficult to see unless you're really looking for it. When I take it in for PPF I'll see if the shop can clean those spots up. I'm curious if Tesla will even entertain doing anything about the headlight / panels or if I'll get the "within spec" treatment. At the end of the day it's not a deal breaker, I've been on these forums long enough to know what I was getting myself into and they're not going to hinder my enjoyment of the car (as long as it doesn't leak water)
 
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atmorris8

Member
Oct 15, 2018
10
8
Chaska, MN
Quick update on this thread- I got the black mark out of the paint with a clay bar, but in the process discovered another flaw in the sheet metal in the passenger rear quarter panel. It's basically an inverted dent aka an "outie."

I took the car in for service yesterday. It took about an hour and a half, and they were able to get the stains out of the headliner and mostly correct the alignment of the headlights and taillights. I showed the SA the "outie" and he said they could have PDR fix it, but I would have to make another appointment. Overall I'm satisfied with the service experience.

I'm about 250 miles in now and really enjoying the car. Effortless performance and great technology. PPF and tint go on next Monday, and I have a few other odds and ends to install as well.
 

Brenkj

Member
Sep 11, 2018
127
26
Dallas, Texas
My at-home delivery is tomorrow morning. Any advice on what to do if I find something wrong during delivery? I assumed I would point them out to the delivery person who would document them for repair, but it sounds like maybe not.
 

atmorris8

Member
Oct 15, 2018
10
8
Chaska, MN
@Brenkj - If they're like my delivery team, they're just going to tell you to take pictures and submit a service request in the app within a couple days of getting the car. That's what I did and it worked out just fine. I'm sure not all service centers are as nice to deal with as mine was, but I didn't get any "it's within spec" push-back for any of the issues I identified.
 

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