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More bad customer service, bad paint, broken loaner, no loaners... :(

Guruguys

Member
Jul 5, 2020
29
9
Houston
First, I have been happy with my Model Y for the most part - I took delivery of it in July and have racked up over 4000 miles on it. When I took delivery there were some paint issues - which I documented for Tesla on delivery day. A lot of the issues that seemed to plague other model Y's were not present, or at the very least I am not picky enough to notice them, but the paint definitely needed work.

Some of the problems I previously posted here were about automation/online service with my purchase experience seem to have followed into ownership as Tesla appears to rely too much on automation with their customer service. My experience when getting to talk to an actual person in my area (ie. local sales local service) has been good enough, however, my experience getting to that point has been terrible. Problems like getting no responses to emails or texts, contradictory responses, or getting stuck in automated phone call loops are too common. I've now learned just the right numbers to hit to get to a person in service, even if its not regarding what I am hitting the numbers for, and coincidentally I was given that combination by a Tesla employee because obviously its an issue for them too.

For the paint, I have had to make several trips to the service center to get it handled. Each time I stated I needed a loaner, and each time I was told they can not guarantee loaners... This in and of itself is pretty insane and nothing I would have every assumed. I have purchased 7 new cars in my life, I drive a lot so often trade in every 3-4 years, this car is by FAR the most expensive car I have owned, double what I have paid for any other vehicle. I have purchased $15k cars before which had no problems providing a loaner when it needed service, I've never had a problem getting a loaner for any car I've previously purchased. For a $70k car, not to mention one that needed fixed from day one, it should not be hard to provide a loaner or rental. Their offer of 'Uber credits' may work for a few, but I can not wait for Uber to pick me up between appointments, and I am on call at times so have to leave ASAP.

Now I learn Tesla doesn't guarantee loaners, they might have one, but they apparently also have no real way to reserve a loaner for your service appointment you just have to get lucky that one is available when you go to service. This really wouldn't be much of a problem for me - I told them I don't care if I have to wait 6 months to get the car paint fixed, as long as it gets fixed and I have a car to drive during that time. I am really not that hard to work with and probably far less picky than most here with what they consider a 'problem'. The issue here is that they could not tell me if there would or wouldn't be a loaner available even the day before my appointment, which means every appointment I have to schedule time off in advance with work to deal with the appointment and make a trip to the service center, and each time they couldn't help it was a good chunk of the day wasted. Unfortunately, because of their internal automation, there doesn't seem to be much of a way for them to notify you, and if you try respond to the text notifications you get the company response about 'Uber credit, no loaner' was be sent to me, probably coming from someone at National Tesla and not local. Additionally, if within 24 hours you try to change of modify your service appointment on the app you are told you can not and to call the service center, but when you call the service system it repeats several times "We can not modify or make changes to your service appointment, you must use the app".... endless loop until you learn how to get a person by lying to the automated system (hint, tell it your car is already in service). What a mess.

So on the third scheduled trip to the service center they had a loaner (fourth really, I had to reschedule one because of a hurricane the same day which is how I learned about not being able to change of modify service within 24 hours) . It was a Model X, and it only had about 200 miles range at 90% charge - but it was something so I didn't complain (I returned home with less than 30 miles left on the first day, where my Y usually has over 100 on my busiest days). Its been a bit over week and last night while driving I heard a pop and the suspension dropped on the Model X they loaned me. I was not far from home to made it there, but there were air suspension error messages popping up, I could hear air leaking and the car was leaning significantly to one side. There were no road side stickers in the loaner, when I clicked on my app it just stated 'your car in is service, click for estimate date of completion' etc. I responded to my service text and asked them to call in the morning. I ended up calling Tesla when they opened. They told me to call roadside, so I did. The roadside said number said several times, 'this is for emergency roadside only, if this is not an emergency , press X'. I press X, and get transferred back to service, who tells me to call roadside again and just say its an emergency.... yet another confusing automated system issue...

Roadside was friendly enough, though they wanted the nickname to my Model Y and the month I purchased it as security questions. I didn't spend much time making a nickname for my Model Y, I certainly was never told it could be used as a security question, it was luck that I managed to guess what it was named as I never bothered remembering its nickname and my Tesla App is stuck in a 'car is in service appointment' screen. I asked what other security information can be used she said that was it, I might have been stuck in yet another automation dead end had I not remembered the nickname correctly. I asked them about loaner and of course they don't handle that, its up to service. They schedule to pick up the car, and right as they were hanging up Tesla called in response to the text I had sent the night before. I told them they were picking up the loaner and asked if I should drive back to the service center to get another, they said they have none and, of course, could offer Uber credits. I had 3 appointments this morning - I knew just dealing with getting roadside etc would mess some of it up, but there is no way I can rely on Uber to get me around. Now I have no car to drive - they won't reimburse a rental, I can't rely on Uber, I've spent over $70k on a new car that had a paint job that looked like it was done at Macco, and I have no idea if or when I will get another loaner from Tesla, or when my car is going to be done. To be fair, Tesla service have been in good communication since they took my car into service, although its been over a week now and they haven't started work, they had to send it to a third party paint shop, get estimates, send those to Tesla to approve, etc. I don't have an ETA for my car yet, I would imagine it will be at least a week once they actually start the paint work, but who knows at this point.

So now I am not sure what to do, I have responded to the 'service text' asking how I will be notified when another loaner becomes available (I fear there is no system in place to do this, so I won't). I am probably just going to get the 'Uber credit' offer from them. The last service guy I spoke with on the phone said they have no loaners, didn't make it clear if I will get this one back if they fix it, and offered uber credits...

I am going to have to pay for a rental in the meantime out of pocket - and I don't know for how long. This is really, really crappy service for a car this expensive, it needs to be fixed for them to go mainstream and will be their downfall if they don't as EV competition really starts to ramp up. The Model Y, aside from paint, has been a great car to drive, its so much more relaxing just letting it do its thing in stop in go rush hour traffic etc, I am happy with it otherwise.
 

ftmaybe

Member
Feb 11, 2020
215
295
San Joaquin
Absolutely zero criticism toward you - clearly "loaner vehicles" are a common service / expectation in this day in age - but, that being said, I am not sure how it became the responsibility of the manufacturer to ensure the vehicle they sold you is 100% available. Normally I would think with any product or service, if you require 100% uptime, then you pay more upfront to cover the extra logistics required to make this happen. A service level agreement and paying more for more uptime is standard operating procedure in my profession.

Back in 2000 I bought a BMW and it was in the shop quite a bit for this or that within the first two years. Some people I knew were critical of this but I didn't mind at all because I loved driving the car so much. However it did put me in teh mindset to start keeping an older spare car around for any type of unexpected "car outage", and I have done so ever since. Name the reason: extended period in teh shop for repairs (our 2012 X5), extended period waiting for car order to be delivered (tesla), and/or car accident (recently the tesla as well) - all of these are painlessly covered having an extra car.

My wife and I are short our model 3 going on almost six weeks now (after an accident, with another 4+ weeks maybe on delivery of a replacement), and no issues with downtime because we still have a paid off, third car available. I don't think an extra car is an egregious expense, either, the car we have is prob worth less than $10k .. and considering the amount of money thrown around here on Performance models / PPF / wheels and upgrades, seems like ~$10k would be a very small sacrifice in the long view for some extra peace of mind.
 

Guruguys

Member
Jul 5, 2020
29
9
Houston
I am not complaining about 100% uptime, crap happens. I can afford a rental, but considering the circumstances, I should not have to.

As a single with no dependents having more than one car/insurance/maintenance etc makes no sense for me, I'd never drive it. If Tesla offered me an extended plan for future in warranty service that had rental I would go for it, I drive a lot and have always purchased extended factory plans that have paid off (avoid third party plans like plague). However the situation here is a brand new car that was bad on delivery.

Mainly I am just upset that the first real 'luxury' car I've bought is turning out to be much less luxurious experience than I thought it would be, and for reasons that shouldn't exist
 
Last edited:
Mar 25, 2013
622
557
Key West, FL
Absolutely zero criticism toward you - clearly "loaner vehicles" are a common service / expectation in this day in age - but, that being said, I am not sure how it became the responsibility of the manufacturer to ensure the vehicle they sold you is 100% available. Normally I would think with any product or service, if you require 100% uptime, then you pay more upfront to cover the extra logistics required to make this happen. A service level agreement and paying more for more uptime is standard operating procedure in my profession.

Back in 2000 I bought a BMW and it was in the shop quite a bit for this or that within the first two years. Some people I knew were critical of this but I didn't mind at all because I loved driving the car so much. However it did put me in teh mindset to start keeping an older spare car around for any type of unexpected "car outage", and I have done so ever since. Name the reason: extended period in teh shop for repairs (our 2012 X5), extended period waiting for car order to be delivered (tesla), and/or car accident (recently the tesla as well) - all of these are painlessly covered having an extra car.

My wife and I are short our model 3 going on almost six weeks now (after an accident, with another 4+ weeks maybe on delivery of a replacement), and no issues with downtime because we still have a paid off, third car available. I don't think an extra car is an egregious expense, either, the car we have is prob worth less than $10k .. and considering the amount of money thrown around here on Performance models / PPF / wheels and upgrades, seems like ~$10k would be a very small sacrifice in the long view for some extra peace of mind.


Wait, what?? You're saying Tesla owners should budget for another vehicle for when the Tesla one is incapacitated at the SC?? OMG, is this like the joke back in the day about Jaguars,...: you always buy 2, because invariably 1 will be under repair. Sure, we all would love to do this, IF Tesla offers buy 1 get 1 free.
 
  • Funny
Reactions: captanzuelo

Uncle Paul

Well-Known Member
Nov 1, 2013
6,238
6,737
Canyon Lake,CA
Tesla owners are never guaranteed Tesla loaners. Same with most all manufacturers. It is a courtesy they provide when they have one available. Very expensive to provide and a big hassle, expecially during Covid 19.
 
  • Disagree
Reactions: TMYToday

ftmaybe

Member
Feb 11, 2020
215
295
San Joaquin
Very expensive to provide and a big hassle, expecially during Covid 19.

I agree. I'm not sure people really consider the business side of this.

I am going to guess this could go several different directions:

1. keep enough loaners on hand to support the maximum number of "actively being worked" service orders the facility has capacity for.
2. keep enough loaners on hand to support a statistical average of active / pending service orders.
3. keep enough loaners on hand to support every registered owner in the facility's service area (ludicrous).

I expect that normally #1 might be sufficient and maybe somewhat cost effective. However this won't cover all the "undriveable" customer cars that have to wait days or weeks for a service appointment due to some kind of parts or service backlog (a current tesla problem in some areas). Which would fall into #2 and I figure that would result in a very large reserve fleet of loaner cars which is likely not cost effective at all, likely even increasing costs on the labor side as well just to manage all of the cars being handed out. also it seems that a lot of facilities absolutely do not have the space for this.

As I said originally, loaner cars seem to be a thing anyway so somehow dealerships are making it work. I still believe this shouldn't be the dealership's problem (certainly because as you say, customers are not guaranteed loaners), and whether or not it seems like a "free service", customers are still paying for it somehow with increased product costs. But I don't run a car dealership so .. I could be wrong.
 

ftmaybe

Member
Feb 11, 2020
215
295
San Joaquin
I am not complaining about 100% uptime, crap happens. I can afford a rental, but considering the circumstances, I should not have to.

As a single with no dependents having more than one car/insurance/maintenance etc makes no sense for me, I'd never drive it. If Tesla offered me an extended plan for future in warranty service that had rental I would go for it, I drive a lot and have always purchased extended factory plans that have paid off (avoid third party plans like plague). However the situation here is a brand new car that was bad on delivery.

Mainly I am just upset that the first real 'luxury' car I've bought is turning out to be much less luxurious experience than I thought it would be, and for reasons that shouldn't exist

/nod .. that's all sensible. Especially considering how new your car is.

Who knows, maybe if Tesla can get their service center capacity caught up with the massive increase in sales since the model 3 launch, they can get back to having some measure of loaner availability.
 

Pilot1226

Member
Dec 20, 2019
355
158
USA
@Guruguys

Wondering if your love and joy of the Tesla is worth the bad experiences you’ve had. I am looking at a Toyota RAV4 Prime and a Model Y LR AWD and concerned as well. I know the Tesla is a better vehicle unless it needs service, and that’s where the problem starts. In a position like mine, I can get a R4P fully loaded and optioned for pretty close to the price of the Model Y after all tax incentives and rebates. What are your thoughts? Toyota is an established manufacturer and their reliability record and quality is excellent.
 

rxlawdude

Active Member
Jul 10, 2015
2,350
1,618
Orange County, CA
@Guruguys

Wondering if your love and joy of the Tesla is worth the bad experiences you’ve had. I am looking at a Toyota RAV4 Prime and a Model Y LR AWD and concerned as well. I know the Tesla is a better vehicle unless it needs service, and that’s where the problem starts. In a position like mine, I can get a R4P fully loaded and optioned for pretty close to the price of the Model Y after all tax incentives and rebates. What are your thoughts? Toyota is an established manufacturer and their reliability record and quality is excellent.
Because of your already formed doubts, get the Toyota.
 
Mar 25, 2013
622
557
Key West, FL
I agree. I'm not sure people really consider the business side of this.

I am going to guess this could go several different directions:

1. keep enough loaners on hand to support the maximum number of "actively being worked" service orders the facility has capacity for.
2. keep enough loaners on hand to support a statistical average of active / pending service orders.
3. keep enough loaners on hand to support every registered owner in the facility's service area (ludicrous).

I expect that normally #1 might be sufficient and maybe somewhat cost effective. However this won't cover all the "undriveable" customer cars that have to wait days or weeks for a service appointment due to some kind of parts or service backlog (a current tesla problem in some areas). Which would fall into #2 and I figure that would result in a very large reserve fleet of loaner cars which is likely not cost effective at all, likely even increasing costs on the labor side as well just to manage all of the cars being handed out. also it seems that a lot of facilities absolutely do not have the space for this.

As I said originally, loaner cars seem to be a thing anyway so somehow dealerships are making it work. I still believe this shouldn't be the dealership's problem (certainly because as you say, customers are not guaranteed loaners), and whether or not it seems like a "free service", customers are still paying for it somehow with increased product costs. But I don't run a car dealership so .. I could be wrong.


If their QC was up to snuff, having enough loaners on hand wouldn't be a thing at all.
 

No2DinosaurFuel

Active Member
Apr 16, 2015
1,383
712
San Diego, California
Given tesla beta test their new cars with customer, I think servicing new vehicles is something one should expect when buying a model y.

Now about service loaners, they dont guarantee it and it should not be expected. Yes it is an expensive car, but it is not a luxury car so them loaning you something else or urber credit should be more than enough. If it is something you dont agree with, I think it is best wait until others with more patience and tolerance on crappy service experience work out the kinks with the cars for you.

You can disagree, but buying a model y, basically comes with a bad experience. And complaining isn't going to really help given how much cash tesla has right now and how many others are willing to throw money at them for their cars. There is zero incentive for them to change what they are doing when they are pumping out problematic cars, yet people are sti buying it up.
 

ftmaybe

Member
Feb 11, 2020
215
295
San Joaquin
If their QC was up to snuff, having enough loaners on hand wouldn't be a thing at all.

Yeah, that is probably true. Though mechanical failures still happen .. part of me thinks that beyond their QC issues they will still need more service centers given the huge increase in car shipments they are doing vs a few years ago.

I think recently I saw a post here from someone that just needed their 12v battery replaced and the SC didn't even have it. So if this person wanted tesla to handle it, they were out a car for weeks while they got a battery in stock. Definitely are other issues at play here complicating a generic level of "loaner" program.
 

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