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Model Y purchase options

GeorgeC1

Member
Jun 2, 2020
156
91
NC
I am interested in a model Y. On paper it ticks off everything I want as a replacement for my I3 coming off lease. The I3 has been flawless as have those of two friends who leased them also. (BMW had great lease deals, 319 a month, 10,000 miles 3600 to start lease on a 55,000 dollar car). This forum scares me to death. I do realize most car forums contain a lot of negative posts as people having a good experience rarely post about it. What’s posted here is however beyond bad often with pics to back the posts up. My attempt to get a test drive seemed to mirror the bad experiences posted here.
Even given all the forum info I decided to try again at a Y purchase or lease. I finally was able to speak to a sales person and he said I must purchase the car in advance with full payment before delivery and I have to accept delivery without so much as a test drive and can’t reject the car based on inspecting it at handover. Is this correct? Are there any work arounds? I have never ordered a car I could not reject after a inspection and test drive. Is there something I am missing? What happened to Tesla’s if you don’t like it return it in 7 day policy? I asked what would happen if it showed up missing a door and he said it’s your car but we will schedule a appointment to fix it! There must be something I am not understanding, no test drive, really? My last car purchase they required me to drive it and made me go through a checklist with them to insure everything worked before we signed the final paperwork.

Suggestions?
 
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jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
2,581
2,556
Maryland
Tesla no longer offers the 7 day return option. It is true that you cannot test drive the vehicle you are purchasing at delivery. My understanding is that you can still reject the vehicle at the delivery center, decline to turn over the final payment if you are paying via a cashier's check. If you arrange for touchless home delivery it may be more difficult to reject the vehicle.

In fact most Tesla Model Y vehicles are delivered without a hitch. Issues may include quality defects in fit and finish. You must submit a list of the items you want corrected within 3 or 4 days of delivery. Tesla may attempt to correct the issue, such as a panel gap, or may claim that it is within spec. For everything else you use the Tesla app to schedule a service appointment. This could be at a Tesla Service Center or Tesla may be able to send a Tesla Mobile Service Technician to your home or office to inspect, determine how to make the needed repair.

If your new Tesla vehicle stops dead on your way out of the Delivery Center then this would be both unusual and an embarrassment for Tesla. You would be within your rights to demand that they either correct the issue right then and there or take back the vehicle.

FWIW, while I was writing this my Model Y software was being updated, over the air, to release 2020.44.25 (Updates typically are released every few weeks, take ~25 minutes to be automatically installed.)
 
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Hoowzer

Member
Sep 22, 2020
234
111
SF Bay
When I ordered my AMG several years ago I never got to test drive it, and I most definitely didn't have the option to return it. In fact, I spent a pretty penny to go pick it up at the delivery center in Europe. You need to stop thinking of Tesla as a traditional car manufacturer. Tesla typically makes cars to order.

I'm sure if you ever bought a custom engraved ipad or got your wife's initials on a new Birkin bag you're definitely not allowed to return any of that either.

Tesla customer service isn't as bad as others make it out to be. If you do see very egregious errors on the outside of the vehicle you have every right to walk away. And if for one reason you didn't catch it like I did at delivery, the SC makes effort to make it right. Are some SCs better than others? Most definitely. Will the SC make everything right? For me they did, for others, maybe not.

You have to understand by reading these forums you're setting yourself up for failure because you'll probably end up being more nit picky on your tesla than you did with your i3. I know I did vs. my AMG that I paid significantly more for.
 
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spokey

Member
Aug 8, 2020
606
235
Flagtown
I certainly test drove in late July/August no problem. And didn't spend a penny more than the $100 order fee before delivery. It was unlocked and functional for my inspection (this was 9/8). The delivery agent essentially said "take your time". When I was satisfied I signed a bunch of stuff and wrote a check.

I have a couple small panel alignment issues. But since all the hubbub I've noticed small (smaller than the MY) alignment issues with the 2019 Camry and 2015 Outback. I have two (maybe 3) issues that I will eventually bring up. A door handle that sticks, a rocker panel that probably needs a clip and the third is the child seatbelt warning for the rear goes on when I put the seat down.
 
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Srad600Volt

Member
Sep 28, 2020
315
207
Southern California
I wasn't going to respond to this post but since you've decided to run behind me "disliking" my posts (which quite frankly tells me all I need to know about you), I figured I'd explain my stance. It's nothing to do with you personally, but your statement that:
Tesla typically makes cars to order.
Seems quite inaccurate. From what I've seen, these car's are not one off, hand made to order vehicles. They are put together on an assembly line, shipped out in mass and if a spec matches your order, you are matched with a vin. If you pass on the car, it goes to someone else who chose the same or similar spec.

Also
I'm sure if you ever bought a custom engraved ipad or got your wife's initials on a new Birkin bag you're definitely not allowed to return any of that either.
this situation is very different than ordering an "off-the-shelf Tesla. Unless the OP had it personalized somehow, which I doubt, since Tesla does not seem to do that.

Lastly,
You have to understand by reading these forums you're setting yourself up for failure because you'll probably end up being more nit picky on your tesla than you did with your i3.
I have to disagree with this statement, having more information is almost never a bad thing. It's not having the information that is the problem, but how you make use of it.

Feel free to disagree with all my posts if you like, I hope that makes you feel better!
 
Oct 3, 2020
205
215
Seattle
After reflecting on my first purchase/delivery/service experience with a MY, I can see both good and bad.. depending on how you look at it.

The good starts by a purchase experience that does not involve a car salesman pressuring you into making a bad financial decision. They even make the trade in experience very simple, giving a fair value for the car, without haggling!! The delivery experience was super simplified as well when compared to other manufacturers, which would have only took 20 minutes if I didn’t have to do ‘my inspection.’

The bad basically has to do with all of the quality control issues that they don’t take care of during the manufacturing process. Some issues can be minor, others can be disappointingly significant. Having said that, the good news is that they make it right. I found several issues during my delivery and within the first week of ownership. All I had to do was submit the service ticket, which is awesome to do using the app, and list the issues that I found. After the service visit, problems solved! They even will go as far as to send the mobile tech to your doorstep when possible and make the repairs in your driveway, which is a massive convenience that I think often goes unmentioned.

I believe this is what any new Tesla owner should expect as it is clearly a part of the way Elon likes to do business. There’s definitely a method to the madness... and it’s not as bad as some make it out to be.
 
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tonyb99

Member
Mar 22, 2020
182
102
Tucson
I placed my order, which cost me $100. When it was ready for delivery I inspected it, noted one fault with the rear seat release in the trunk, decided to accept the delivery, then and only then did I write a personal check for the balance. How can anyone fault Tesla for that process?
 

Mark in NC

Member
Sep 18, 2020
12
3
USA
I picked mine up on Nov. 7. I pointed out a few issues - I think they had worked on the car at the service center since a panel was missing under the fronk (said it was the first time THAT had ever happened). There were some scratches on the rear bumper and a chip in the paint. They fixed everything but the rear bumper in about 10 minutes and told me to schedule fixing the bumper. Said be careful of the repair paint for 24 hours (it looks perfect).

There was no time pressure to look over the car - I was told to take my time and this was their favorite part of the job. Once I was happy I handed them a check and drove off.

The Raleigh shop can't fix my bumper until Jan(!) but otherwise I'm extremely happy.
 

jdchi

Member
Nov 7, 2017
66
107
Illinois
Your comment that this forum overrepresents negative experiences is key. I am not minimizing people's frustrating experiences on here, most of which are legitimate and unacceptable. But I suspect they are not representative--and I know they are not representative of my own experiences. In fact, I've contributed to this. I've purchased an X and a Y now and have only posted on here about problems I've had (all minor). But my overall experience with these cars has been fantastic. They are by far the best cars I've ever owned.

I had the X for about three years and the time/money I spent on repairs/maintenance was only a fraction of what I've spent on any other car, and it mostly was on replacing tires that got ravaged by the mean streets of Chicago (and on that one time I drove it into a brick wall). I just took delivery of the Y and it was perfect. After reading these forums, I, like you, was concerned, so I did a careful inspection. Not so much as a scuff. My experience is just as anecdotal as the next person's, but those are the anecdotes that don't get posted here.

I will say the sales/service teams at Tesla appear to be woefully understaffed and under-resourced to meet surging demand, and that does cause frustrating delays and communications breakdowns. But those teams (in my experience) are made up of people who genuinely care and want to help. I have had my fair share of frustrating experiences with the Tesla bureaucracy, but it all melts away when I get behind the wheel and fall in love with the car all over again.
 
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Puma2020

Member
Jun 16, 2020
415
440
New Hampshire, USA
I fully understand the OP's concern. I will speak of my delivery experience which was end of June (quarter end rush).
I also was very concerned about all of the quality "defects" that everyone was talking about. I had a 2 page list of things to check for. I drove to NJ, 225 miles away, as there is no closer delivery center for me. I did that fully expecting with some dread, that I would have to return home with my trade-in (a 2011). However, since it was in the middle of the first pandemic surge, it was nice to make a road trip and get out of the house. I chose to go in person rather than get it delivered to avoid any issues returning it. Back then the 7 day return policy was in place, so I had already paid for it to avoid any issues at pick-up.

Once I arrived, there was absolutely no pressure about me inspecting the car. I went through the checklist. Everything was perfect. I suspect that since the SC had the car for a few days and they knew I was going to inspect it and I hinted that it better be fine, that if there were any usual issues, they fixed them before I got there. Moved all of the stuff from trade-in to my Y and drove it home. Enjoyed the drive home immensely.

About 2 weeks later the trunk hatch started making the crunching noise that others had discussed. Scheduled a SC appointment via the app with the closest SC but requested if a mobile ranger could be arranged to avoid a 1.5 hour trip (each way). The next day the appointment was changed to mobile service. At the scheduled time (about a week later), he came to the house, fixed the car within the hour (and I got to watch so now I know more about the issue and the fix). Best service appointment ever. The car is now 5 months old. With all of the pandemic issues, haven't driven it as much as I'd like but I have taken it up Mt. Washington Auto Road (see profile pic) and driven it about 4,000 miles. Best car I've ever owned.

I should mention the downside of owning a Tesla. I have polished the car more times in the 5 months, than I have done with my previous cars in 30+ years. I just want my baby to look pretty. Yes, it is true love. Haven't felt like this (about a car, my Mazda RX-4) since I was 20.
 

FredMertz

Supporting Member
Apr 2, 2016
325
372
Westchester, NY
I wasn't going to respond to this post but since you've decided to run behind me "disliking" my posts (which quite frankly tells me all I need to know about you), I figured I'd explain my stance. It's nothing to do with you personally, but your statement that:
Seems quite inaccurate. From what I've seen, these car's are not one off, hand made to order vehicles. They are put together on an assembly line, shipped out in mass and if a spec matches your order, you are matched with a vin. If you pass on the car, it goes to someone else who chose the same or similar spec.

Also this situation is very different than ordering an "off-the-shelf Tesla. Unless the OP had it personalized somehow, which I doubt, since Tesla does not seem to do that.

Lastly, I have to disagree with this statement, having more information is almost never a bad thing. It's not having the information that is the problem, but how you make use of it.

Feel free to disagree with all my posts if you like, I hope that makes you feel better!

Made-to-order does not mean that they are custom or one-off. It means that they are matched to a specific order before they are built. Which they are. There's no inventory other than rejected vehicles.

It's like the difference between made-to-measure, bespoke, and off-the-rack, if you're a suit buyer. A Tesla it made-to-measure, a Ferrari is bespoke and a Honda is off-the-rack (although you can order it made-to-order if you're willing to wait).
 

GeorgeC1

Member
Jun 2, 2020
156
91
NC
To add to purchase questions, some model Y’s are showing up in stock. They are listed as new but have from a few hundred to 1000 or more miles. If I opt for one of these cars will Tesla allow you to view the service history and explain why they have the car. As a example a car might be a demo or it might be a return.
 

origingalatic

Member
Jul 18, 2020
247
165
new york
To add to purchase questions, some model Y’s are showing up in stock. They are listed as new but have from a few hundred to 1000 or more miles. If I opt for one of these cars will Tesla allow you to view the service history and explain why they have the car. As a example a car might be a demo or it might be a return.

That's interesting. Doesn't hurt to ask. I will say that I test drove MY twice and the latest car I drove was Oct. built vs the first time I drove in August was a June built. I can't imagine they keep the same car for test drive, it may be more economical to sell off these cars before they hit certain mileage...
 

spokey

Member
Aug 8, 2020
606
235
Flagtown
I disagree. If Tesla
matched to a specific order before they are built
we see a VIN much sooner than we do. I'd guess they use the orders to tailor their production but match a specific vehicle to a specific order much later in the process.
 

Ldub22

Member
Mar 1, 2015
174
133
Kirkland, WA
I am interested in a model Y. On paper it ticks off everything I want as a replacement for my I3 coming off lease. The I3 has been flawless as have those of two friends who leased them also. (BMW had great lease deals, 319 a month, 10,000 miles 3600 to start lease on a 55,000 dollar car). This forum scares me to death. I do realize most car forums contain a lot of negative posts as people having a good experience rarely post about it. What’s posted here is however beyond bad often with pics to back the posts up. My attempt to get a test drive seemed to mirror the bad experiences posted here.
Even given all the forum info I decided to try again at a Y purchase or lease. I finally was able to speak to a sales person and he said I must purchase the car in advance with full payment before delivery and I have to accept delivery without so much as a test drive and can’t reject the car based on inspecting it at handover. Is this correct? Are there any work arounds? I have never ordered a car I could not reject after a inspection and test drive. Is there something I am missing? What happened to Tesla’s if you don’t like it return it in 7 day policy? I asked what would happen if it showed up missing a door and he said it’s your car but we will schedule a appointment to fix it! There must be something I am not understanding, no test drive, really? My last car purchase they required me to drive it and made me go through a checklist with them to insure everything worked before we signed the final paperwork.

Suggestions?

So George, now that the children have spoken, I would like to answer your question.

You can reject the car at receipt, but Tesla is selling their cars like hotcakes, so they will be less solicitous of your business than BMW was with the i3, because, let's face it, they were ecstatic that people bought/leased the i3s. BTW, I really liked that car! Beautiful, unique interior!

I am getting a Model Y to replace my 2015 Model S. I have one of the earliest 2015 P85Ds. When I bought the car, the Tesla Service center was in a GRAVEL parking lot behind a plumbing supply store! Tesla has always taken care of me really well, but you should know a few things about Tesla:

  1. Their service centers ARE NOT dealerships
  2. They don't make any money on service
  3. They will do their best to fix any problems with your car
  4. Teslas have quality issues, but they are almost always "niggly" issues like panel gaps
  5. The noisiest people on the forums are always the people who have early cars that had build issues
  6. The people who complain the most almost always enjoy grinding the axe that they have already sharpened
  7. Most every Tesla owner, even the ones with issues on their cars, would NEVER actually trade in their Tesla for another car.
  8. Most of us have had virtually no issues at all.
Some people feel that Tesla owners have drank the Kool-Aide and will accept anything the company makes. This is stupid. They are cars. Cars that are so cool, and so advanced, and so outside the box that people will waste hours and hours and hours talking about them, complaining about them, loving on them, modifying them, critiquing others about their opinions, etc.

Tesla owners are PASSIONATE.

I have met a few i3 owners, and they liked their cars, but they weren't PASSIONATE, because in the end, BMW didn't CARE about the i3.

So I'll leave you with this: if you order a Model Y, you might have some problems, but you probably won't. However, you probably won't own another brand ever again, or until something REALLY BIG changes about other cars.

They are that good. Is that worth the risk? I think so.
 
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annguye1

Member
Jul 17, 2020
7
6
Virginia
I appreciate the info. I was under the impression they wanted final payment before delivery. If I can cut them a check after inspecting the car I will feel much better about ordering.

They ask for payment before delivery but it's not required unless something's changed. I did my inspection and had the option to refuse delivery before I wrote the check.
 

DaveORD

Member
Mar 12, 2020
721
620
Chicagoland
They ask for payment before delivery but it's not required unless something's changed. I did my inspection and had the option to refuse delivery before I wrote the check.

unless you live in a state like TX where you must pay in advance before they will ship the car to you. If you do not take delivery in one of those states, then like annguye1 said, you can bring payment with you and if all is good enough for you, pay then.
 

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