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Model 3 Rear Drive Unit Failed?

DrLegoHair

Member
Jun 16, 2017
92
535
Orlando, FL
Picked up Model 3 yesterday. This morning the car says that the rear drive unit failed. “Exiting and reentering the vehicle may restore function”.

Well that didn’t work and the wierd thing is that I can not power down the vehicle completely from the touchscreen, it immediately turns back on. I’ve tried the scroll wheel reset while holding the break. That does a quick reboot but does not power down completely.

Any ideas? Tow truck is on the way! And I’m 200 miles from home!
 

Electric700

Active Member
May 21, 2013
1,739
427
Florida, United States
Did Tesla already walk you through steps to try to get your car working again? You can reach them at (877) 798-3752. You could also try getting out of your car, shutting the door, waiting 5 minutes then getting back in again. Make sure to walk far enough away so that your car doesn't stay awake.

Sorry this happened, and I hope you get a quick resolution.
 
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DrLegoHair

Member
Jun 16, 2017
92
535
Orlando, FL
Did Tesla already walk you through steps to try to get your car working again? You can reach them at (877) 798-3752. You could also try getting out of your car, shutting the door, waiting 5 minutes then getting back in again. Make sure to walk far enough away so that your car doesn't stay awake.

Sorry this happened, and I hope you get a quick resolution.


Thanks for the reply, yes we did all that. Trying to get Tesla California to remotely log in before the truck gets here.
 

DrLegoHair

Member
Jun 16, 2017
92
535
Orlando, FL
A/C randomly stopped working now. The car won’t sleep no matter how long we leave it alone. Strange.

Well, Tesla is sending me a car at least.

Off to the service center the model 3 goes
 

Eclectic

Member
Nov 8, 2014
787
1,401
Montana
Wow. I understand the concept of owners being beta testers, but from all the problems being reported with the Model 3, from failed motors to cracked glass roofs to failure to operate entirely, it sounds like production hell and bottlenecks may actually be in Tesla's best interests...
 

C141medic

Active Member
Apr 9, 2016
1,714
1,578
New Jersey
Any pics of the screen with the error message(s)? Strange if the DU failed, why would exiting and re-entering the vehicle make a difference?
 

DrLegoHair

Member
Jun 16, 2017
92
535
Orlando, FL
Message changed from drive unit failed - exiting and reeentering may restore operation - to the current pictures I uploaded.
 

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Jays200

Member
Apr 1, 2016
601
643
Perth, Western Australia
It's almost like some owners are creating emotive thread titles on TMC before they've even contacted Tesla technical help.

Surely Tesla tech is the best place to start for the best advice/assistance.

Why wouldn't you sit on it for a day or three and then lets us know what Tesla did to assist in resolving the problem?

Trolls don't need to be fed much to get fat.
 

DrLegoHair

Member
Jun 16, 2017
92
535
Orlando, FL
It's almost like some owners are creating emotive thread titles on TMC before they've even contacted Tesla technical help.

Surely Tesla tech is the best place to start for the best advice/assistance.

Why wouldn't you sit on it for a day or three and then lets us know what Tesla did to assist in resolving the problem?

Trolls don't need to be fed much to get fat.

I thought someone might have some insight or experienced this issue before. Isn’t that what this forum is for? Obviously the first thing I did was contact Tesla.
 

MikeBur

ManualPilot
Dec 8, 2014
1,373
737
Seattle, WA
I thought someone might have some insight or experienced this issue before. Isn’t that what this forum is for? Obviously the first thing I did was contact Tesla.
Sorry to hear this. Hopefully you have been picked up and have a loaner now. In terms of short term solutions, these errors can be pretty serious and likely the car is being conservative. I wouldn’t drive it until it’s been checked out.
It’s unfortunate, though often true, that the majority of issues are found within the first week of use. Although the cars go through about 30-50 miles of initial testing, this is lightweight compared to the stresses real driving puts on them. Everything from loose bolts, trim pieces, and yes, engines/motors.

Good luck, and please keep us posted
 
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C141medic

Active Member
Apr 9, 2016
1,714
1,578
New Jersey
I thought someone might have some insight or experienced this issue before. Isn’t that what this forum is for? Obviously the first thing I did was contact Tesla.
As an individual who may be receiving my M3 in a few months it’s very helpful and informative to see these type of posts. Good luck with the vehicle. Hope solution is found and ultimately resolved satisfactorily which I’m sure it will.
 

DrLegoHair

Member
Jun 16, 2017
92
535
Orlando, FL
As an individual who may be receiving my M3 in a few months it’s very helpful and informative to see these type of posts. Good luck with the vehicle. Hope solution is found and ultimately resolved satisfactorily which I’m sure it will.

The main reason I posted this was to help future owners. I understand we are beta testing to a certain degree.

With that said - for future owners who may experience this issue.

This has turned out to be a 12v battery problem similar to the other thread posted on this forum. We were able to get the car into drive briefly by jumping the battery.

I’ll post more later
 

CalBlue 85D

Member
Aug 27, 2016
389
464
SF Bay Area
Although the cars go through about 30-50 miles of initial testing, this is lightweight compared to the stresses real driving puts on them. Everything from loose bolts, trim pieces, and yes, engines/motors.

Are you saying that you believe that Tesla test drives every car for 30-50 miles before delivery? That doesn't scale to the kind of production numbers they are trying to reach.
 

MikeBur

ManualPilot
Dec 8, 2014
1,373
737
Seattle, WA
Are you saying that you believe that Tesla test drives every car for 30-50 miles before delivery? That doesn't scale to the kind of production numbers they are trying to reach.
Does make you wonder how hey scale this, though between factory testing and PDI some miles are used.

Legally, odometer states number of miles driven. Tesla conservatively state 50 miles on purchase documentation iirc. Most appear to come with somewhere around 30.
 

DrLegoHair

Member
Jun 16, 2017
92
535
Orlando, FL
Ok - so now I actually have a few minutes to type out a coherent post.


I had been trying to post here in between multiple phone calls to Tesla and trying to stick to my Saturday evening plans!


Before anything else I want to say:


If you find yourself in a similar situation to me and you NEED to move your car - at your own risk you may JUMP the 12v battery. Tesla advises against it - but it was the first thing the Tesla preferred tow driver did. He told me has seen this issue already on several model 3s (! There can’t be more than 100 delivered in my region). He jumped the battery and was able to get the car into drive. It’s easy to access the 12v battery in this car, I won’t go into it here but you can look it up easily. If you do decide to jump - do it quickly and immediately move your car somewhere safe. My 12v battery completely failed shortly after we got it into drive and could not be fully jumped again.


Okay - so here is the full timeline.

I took delivery of my beautiful model 3 on Friday. I went over it with a fine tooth comb and was shocked to find absolutely NO issues. Exterior fit and finish was absolutely perfect. I was impressed, I had expected issues. The car is much better nicer than pictures - as others have said. I can’t wait to get it back.


I decided to do a little road trip to work out any issues before my work week started. Everything was going great - we drove about 200 miles, stopped to charge at a friends house and two hours later got the error message:


Rear drive unit needs service - exiting and reentering the vehicle may restore operation.


We tried all the normal techniques to reboot the car - the strange thing being the car wouldn’t actually ever sleep. For example - if we tried to power off from the touch screen - the screen would just flicker and come back on. In hind sight, this may be because the 12v battery didn’t have enough power to disconnect the HV pack. At this point I called Tesla and they recommended to leave the car alone and arranged a truck to tow my car 200 miles home to my local service center.


While I was waiting for the tow truck, I continued trying different reset techniques. At this point the error message changed to: “Car needs service - car may not start” and “Systems powering up - shift into drive when this message disappears“ Now the AC blower motor was also failing to start - this really should have clued me in to it being a 12v issue but I was thinking it was a firmware problem.


Finally, about thirty minutes after the tow truck driver arrived - the message changed to “12V battery needs service”. He jumped it - was able to shift into drive/neutral and line up the car with the truck. At this point the remaining systems started to power down. The tow driver actually got stuck in the car and I had to remind him to use the emergency release. He was unable to re-jump the 12v battery to a sufficient charge to shift the car into drive again, in fact he couldn’t even release the parking brake. Eventually we couldn’t even get the touchscreen to come back on - although strangely the car was still responsive on the Tesla app for another 15 minutes.


As widespread as this issue seems, I hope this post will help someone understand what is happening if they get a series of confusing error messages like I did. And, if you get the car to start by jumping it, move it quickly to a safe place and then be prepared to lose all power to the vehicle!


Can’t wait to get the car back!
 

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