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Brother T

Stealth Performance
Nov 12, 2019
63
40
Chicago
I am a happy owner of Model 3 Stealth Performance. I found out about the "silent but deadly" nature of EV cars through the movie Stuber. After a little research, I came across Tesla Model 3 and instantly loved it. So, I ordered it on Oct 31, 2019. However, going from order day to the day after delivery day was a long road, so I'm creating this post to guide others toward their dream car.

Note: All the estimates are based on the initial delivery estimate I got for 5-7 weeks. If your estimate, in the future, is 2-3 weeks, just change the time duration to fit your timeline (instead of waiting 4-6 weeks to apply for loan/appraise trade-in, wait 3 weeks) and continue using the tips described below, if they are helpful.


ORDERING:
  1. A test drive is an absolute requirement before you drop down that money. This way, you can decide if you want a Model 3 or an X or a S (or soon to be coming Y, if this thread lasts till then). You can also experience the differences between driving a standard model vs. its performance counterpart. Before you go to the test drive, set up an appointment online with Tesla and create an account on their website.
  2. When test-driving, make sure to go to familiar routes and get an idea of how different an electric car feels when driving. Trust me, it will be very different from anything you have experienced before.
  3. During the test drive, try to play around with Regen braking but don’t get much concerned about it. You will get used to it very quickly once you start driving your own Model 3. You will, however, never get used to the instant acceleration.
  4. When placing an order, make sure to get a referral, either from a sales advisor or anyone on YouTube to get bonus Supercharger miles. Also, ask for an off-menu Stealth model in the existing inventory or in pre-production phase. If none is available, order a Long Range AWD anyway to get your Order in their system. But make it a point to call a different Delivery Center at least once a week to inquire about the Stealth’s availability. I thank all the members on this forum for making me and many happy Stealth owners aware of the Stealth Performance as I would have never found out about it. The Sales Advisor will never mention it until you bring it up.
  5. The Standard Range Plus for $38,990 was tempting but I ended up ordering a Long Range AWD (was not aware of the Stealth Performance’s existence at the time). My reasoning was I will be keeping this car for a long time and after 8-10 years, the SR+ battery would have degraded to around 150mi range from 250mi. I will end up paying $5k-$8k to replace the battery which will end up costing me the price of a Long Range AWD anyway. However, the AWD will degrade down to around 230mi but will still give me a range similar to a new battery in SR+, five to eight years in the future. Plus, I will be getting an additional motor, premium interior, all active speakers and all seat heaters for that price.

THE WAITING PERIOD:
  1. Once an Order is placed, your Tesla account will reflect this. Your Order MANAGE page will now show the Model 3 you have ordered and a list of four tasks you need to complete before proceeding. You can do these four tasks at any time but the last two are to be initiated around four to six weeks after your order date.
    • Task 1: Choose a pickup/drop-off location for your Model 3
    • Task 2: Upload current Registration
    • Task 3: Any trade-in
    • Task 4: Choose how the transaction will be paid (Cash or Finance)
  1. Select your pickup location and upload your current registration right away. If you do not have a trade-in, select “No trade-in” and leave the last task, Payment, for later. If trading-in, ignore it for now until you are ready to apply for a loan either through Tesla or through any Credit Union. Another reason to ignore this task is because the trade-in quotes will expire within 30 days and you, highly likely, will not get your Model 3 in that time frame. I repeat, do not appraise your car with Tesla, CarMax or Carvana until four to six weeks after the order placement date.
  2. Similarly, do not apply for Tesla or any financing till later, especially when hunting for a Stealth Model 3. I got hit with another credit inquiry (albeit a soft inquiry) when I changed my Order to a Stealth Performance on Dec 03, after my Tesla loan was approved for the Long Range AWD.
  3. If means allow it, pay off the lien on your trade-in right away before or soon after placing your order. This should be done way before having the car appraised or applying for a loan. This way, you have your title in your hand (owners of IL financed vehicles do not get their title until the lien is paid off). Another reason is when you trade-in, the complete value of the trade-in will be exempt from taxation. If you still owe on the car, the value owed will get taxed. I could have saved nearly $500 in taxes by paying off the $8,500 I owed on my car but realized this only when I was driving to pick up my car and was thinking of all sorts of things on the way there. For example, my car was valued at $26,000 and the net trade-in (non-taxable) value was $17,500. Had I paid off what I owed, the entire $26,000 would have been tax-free, saving me an additional $500.
  4. The Sales Advisor is going to go dark on you after the first couple weeks after ordering. No matter how many emails or phone calls they get, you are not going to get a reply from that particular person. In my case, there were a ton of people ordering in November and the advisors were understandably busy. My advice is to start calling different Tesla centers to get answers to the status of your Order and the delivery date and rely on the forums to vent out your frustrations and learn more about the car in the process. I had multiple instances where my uploaded info would not reflect in Tesla’s database, even though it appeared on my account at tesla.com. Sometimes, the Tesla Finance agreement I accepted would reset itself. But that is because they were undergoing a system overhaul in late November. So calling them regularly keeps your account updated.
  5. Make sure to call the Delivery Centers every week if you are hunting for Stealth Performance. One advisor may see nothing while another will see tens of them. Try to get any changes done to your existing Order soon before applying for a loan. Note: Even after applying and getting approved, you can still keep looking for a Stealth Performance and if they find one, just switch over to it. That car is worth getting hit with another inquiry on your credit.
  6. Watch a ton of videos about Model 3 and all the tips and tricks you can find online and jot them down for future reference. Shop for Model 3 accessories and get ready to install them on you delivery day itself. I bought splash guards, weather mats, door hinge guards, door open button stickers, center console wrap, a screen protector, cup-holder rims, trunk and front trunk mats, trunk pistons, sentry mode stickers and a wireless phone charger from AbstractOcean.com. I used their discount code. You can find the code in their YouTube walkthrough videos. Also, a Samsung T5 SSD for sentry mode recording is proven to be stable for the cams.
  7. Go to Tesla.com and try to initiate a new Order and see their current estimate price and delivery date range to gauge where your Order may fall. Mine went from 5-6 weeks to 7-9 weeks a month after ordering.
  8. During the wait, try to get an Electrician to install a NEMA 14-50 outlet in your garage, if you are not going to buy the Tesla Wall Charger. However, If you mention the name “Tesla”, they will jack their prices up. Maybe you can get by with saying it’s for an Electric Vehicle but I would tell them it’s for an additional dryer. To be more believable, you can tell them it will be used to power up a welding tool and install a NEMA 14-30 outlet. Using a 14-30 outlet will charge your Tesla at around 22mi/hr vs 14-50’s roughly 30mi/hr. Either way, it’s on your conscience to whether pay extra and go to heaven or lie and save money. I chose the latter.
  9. Once 4-6 weeks have passed, appraise your car with Tesla and apply for Tesla financing. In Dec 2019, Tesla had an elongated 60-day quote which helped me. Once you get the quotes and approvals and accept the offers, all four task boxes will be checked and you will be directed to their Page 2, which contains two tabs- Next steps (Insurance and eventually Payment and Loan Acceptance agreement) and Completed Tasks.
  10. This page will be your new Manage Order page till you take delivery. Upload your current Insurance info right away if you live in the 12 States stated on that page. If you do not live in those 12 States, call up a few Delivery Centers to get your VIN, if you are assigned one. Usually, when you switch over to a Stealth Model 3 in pre-production phase, your VIN appears in the source code right away and the advisor that found the car sends you an email with the VIN number. Once you obtain your VIN, provide it to your Insurance company and get an insurance going so you can upload it to the website. Some delays have resulted due to not completing this task. I got an automated text saying the Delivery Center of my choosing is almost done filling slots for December deliveries and I may lose my spot if I don’t complete all pending tasks in 72hrs. So, try to complete all things your Tesla account asks of you.
  11. The Completed Tasks tab will give you details about your car, your trade-in’s value, net value being applied to the cost of the car and a complete breakdown of the total cost of the vehicle, including the Bank’s name, APR and the amount being loaned. Make sure to manually calculate all the costs (using a calculator) for accuracy. If you do happen to find a better rate than what Tesla is offering, send your loan approval letter to [email protected] to get Tesla to match the offer. They are good about doing that. I like to stay in the same ecosystem, so would do that.
  12. I started calling the Delivery Centers every third day from this point onward as my advisors were unreachable. It usually takes a week or two after this step (at least in Dec 2019) for your Model 3 to be on the delivery truck and on its way to your chosen Delivery Center. You may or may not get a text/email from Tesla or from your delivery advisor about this. That’s why calling the Delivery Center continually is the key to obtaining this information.

DELIVERY PREPARATION:
  1. When you hear that the car is in transit, schedule a pickup date immediately with the advisor over the phone. My account on Tesla.com had my Order number, RNxxxxx, displayed till I scheduled my delivery date. As soon as the pickup was scheduled, a VIN showed up below the RNxxx number along with the Delivery location and pickup date and time. I do not think it would have populated on its own had I not called them myself. Hell, I don’t think any information about anything from the beginning would have reflected on my Tesla account if I hadn’t personally called them regularly.
  2. Try to schedule the pickup appointment during daytime. Not only will a night delivery prevent you from finding issues with your car, the Service center will be closed and you will not get any issue resolved right away.
  3. In a day or two, the website should now have a new section under Next Steps for paying off any balance that is left after subtracting the financed amount and the value of your trade-in. You can either choose to upload your bank info here or write a personal check to Tesla at the Delivery Center when picking your car up. I would write a check instead of paying online as sometimes it may not go through and you may end up delaying your delivery and return empty-handed from the Center on delivery day. In my case, this payment section never showed up until, you guessed it, I called a Tesla rep at a random Delivery Center and told them I needed to pay the balance online because I ran out of checks.
  4. Tesla requires you to Accept the Loan agreement once again before your delivery day but this did not show up either on my account. I found this out when one of the Delivery Center reps told me I haven’t yet accepted my Agreement terms. After that, this section popped up on my account and all I had to do was press the Agree button.
  5. Gather all your accessories that you want to put in the vehicle right away after delivery. I put all mine in the trunk of my trade-in vehicle.

DELIVERY DAY:
  1. On delivery day (mine was Dec 16), make sure you are well-rested as the excitement has already partially blinded you and fatigue from lack of sleep will completely make you oblivious to everything you should be paying attention to. Do not forget your check book when you leave your house.
  2. I did not get a call or any text to notify me of any updates to my order. When I called them on Dec 14, I was told the car is already at the Delivery Center. Of course, they gave me the wrong Delivery Center location. They did call me back right away to tell me they were mistaken and gave me the correct location, the same one I first chose when I ordered the vehicle. I told them to let my location reps know that I’ll be coming to pick my car up in an hour. Two days early!
  3. Call your Insurance provider and have an electronic copy of your insurance card ready, if you haven’t done this already. If you are buying FSD, let the Insurance company know so they cover that as well.
  4. At the delivery center, make sure the folks at Tesla are not rushing you. Also, do not sign any paperwork until you see the car and inspect it yourself. Download any delivery checklist you can find online and use it when doing your walkthrough.
  5. Buy the NEMA 14-30 or 14-50 adapter at the Delivery Center itself, depending on whatever outlet you have installed. In my case, they had a huge stockpile of them so there was no need for me to order online. The vehicle does not come with NEMA 14-50 anymore.
  6. Take the plates out from your trade-in and surrender them to the DMV. Tesla reps say they destroy the plates but if you are like me who would be bothered by what might be happening to your plates, by all means take them with you.
  7. Let them know if you have a payment due soon for your trade-in so they can mark it and try to expedite the car transfer so your bank or your credit doesn’t get penalized for non/late/extra payment.
  8. Do tell them to charge your car to 100% as you will be doing 20-30 miles after delivery, joy-riding and calibrating the cameras.
  9. Help other customers who are looking to place a new order at the Delivery Center by give them advice based on your experience as they will not get as much info from Tesla reps as they would from your month(s) long research and eagerness. The customers probably will not be helped for a while either as the centers are very busy now, which is a perfect opportunity for you to do your good deed of the day while waiting your turn for delivery. I helped a young couple, an older couple and a couple of engine lovers, giving them details of the Model 3, the trims and describing them about my journey. I also took them with me to inspect the car so they can experience it firsthand and also have their eyes help me with inspecting my car. Three pairs of eyes are better than one, goes the saying. Especially when it is bitter cold outside. I had a couple of them sit with me in the car during my setup orientation with my delivery guy. Hope my good deed neutralizes the lies I had to weave to the Electrician.
  10. I ended up staying for about three hours at the Delivery Center as their system was very slow that day and they couldn’t get the paperwork going. Fortunately, this gave me ample time to inspect (in the dark) and install some accessories I had bought during my waiting period after placing my Order.
  11. The Delivery Center reps were very courteous during the wait. Fortunately, they put me in their demo vehicle for the weekend as the paperwork wouldn’t be done till the next business day. I was a happy camper! I got to see my car, inspect it, install some accessories and drive back home in a demo vehicle that I used to break-in my EV driving as well as monitor the imperfections on my frequent routes so as to avoid them in my own car. It also helped me not worry about calibrating the AP in the dark. Since it can take anywhere from 25-50 miles to calibrate the cameras, I may not have been able to experience it with my family over the weekend but thanks to the demo Model 3, I was able to since the cameras were already calibrated.
  12. Also, an important step, ask them to show you where the Roadside Assistance is located in the menu. Create your Local Service Center as a contact in your phone.
  13. Tell them to mark your vehicle as delivered in the system. In my case, my phone was setup with the car computer and configured as Phone key but a day later, it broke my phone’s link to the car and threw me back to the Welcome screen in the Tesla app because it was not delivered the previous day.
  14. Update the System software in Software Updates tab as well as Navigation Maps in Navigation (or Autopilot) tab.
  15. Set up all three pins for your car to be more secure from the get go - Pin to Drive pin, Valet Mode pin and Speed Limit Mode pin. Be sure to save those pins somewhere that you can have easy access to.
  16. Once you are done at the Tesla Delivery Center and before pulling out of their parking lot, install some essential accessories like the splash guards, screen protector, mats, center console wraps, wireless phone charger, etc.
  17. When you do leave, keep your phone away and just drive. I got a delayed notification saying charging is complete and the notification sound resonated over the car speakers. While I was looking at my phone, I saw flashing lights in my rear-view mirror. I got pulled over less than 200 feet after driving off from Tesla! It is a tendency for humans to not recognize common sounds when put in unfamiliar surroundings. Even sirens make you think something is going on with the new or unfamiliar car you are sitting in. I freaked out at the sound of a notification alert on my phone from the car speakers!

AFTER DELIVERY:
  1. Drive around in your new car till the cameras get calibrated and Auto-pilot becomes active. Mine just took 8 miles to get calibrated. Once that happens, keep a lookout for any issues with the radar and the cars that are displayed on your screen. It is normal for them to jiggle around on the radar because those drivers don’t know how to drive and some actually drive that way. In my case, I noticed my radar would show I am passing a car when my back bumper had already cleared it. I was worried at first but a few miles later, the radars began showing correct car position. I guess it was still calibrating even after the “Cameras have been calibrated” notification.
  2. Once you get home, inspect the car thoroughly with the delivery checklist once again report any issue to Tesla right away. I found a crack in the passenger headlight plastic which I couldn’t spot in the dark on delivery day and a window/B-pillar rattle.
  3. The Tesla account page will now reflect the new info. Your reservation number will be replaced with your VIN (indicating Tesla has marked the vehicle as delivered). Also, the MANAGE page will now show the details about your car (color, tire, trim, FSD, supercharging status, etc.) along with links to documents like the Order, Loan and Lending Agreements and the Insurance card you uploaded before delivery.
  4. If you had traded-in your vehicle at Tesla, monitor that account for the next few days to ensure it is closed so you don’t get hit with a late payment penalty and incorrect negative credit reporting. My suggestion it to call your Lienholder and tell them your car is no longer in your possession and you have it signed off to Tesla. Call them every now and then till your account is closed with them. Else, make a payment to avoid late charges / unfair late credit reporting and have them refund you the money once the account is closed.

That’s about it. If there is anything else I missed or stated incorrectly, please let me know and good luck to the new buyers.
 

jomamo

New Member
Dec 18, 2019
1
0
Arizona
This is very helpful, thanks for the guide!

I have been calling the show rooms in Arizona almost daily for any updates on stealth inventory for the past week. I have not placed an order yet because they keep telling me they have nothing in inventory.

Are the delivery centers different from the show rooms?

If I place a LR AWD order right now, what if it takes 3 more months for more stealths to show up? I can keep pushing back the date? I don't want to purchase the LR AWD, I am happy waiting for a stealth.
 

Brother T

Stealth Performance
Nov 12, 2019
63
40
Chicago
Well, Delivery Centers are also showrooms. Some showrooms have a Service department.

As far as ordering, you really won’t have much incentives after the federal tax credit expires. So, if you want a stealth, which I highly recommend, then just keep calling many delivery centers until someone spots one and then order it. Although, I think it is easier for them to switch out your existing configuration with a new one. Try calling the delivery centers in neighboring states as well, that are close enough for you to drive to.

There are plenty of ways to delay the order, which many members here have unintentionally experienced. Example, not uploading required info, changing trims after ordering, etc.
 

Brother T

Stealth Performance
Nov 12, 2019
63
40
Chicago
Or just letting the Payment section sit as is without selecting any of the options (Cash payment, Financing with Tesla, etc.).
 

voxelman

Member
Nov 17, 2019
34
27
Southeast Iowa
Well done! We ordered our cars on the same day and took delivery 2 days apart (me 12/18). We purchased a LR, AWD with FSD. I was informed from the getgo that it would be delivered from the Kansa City Service Center to our home. But when I was told it would arrive in KC on 12/16 and delivery would require 5-7 days to arrange I decided to take the bus to KC and pick it up in person. It required a 6 hour bus ride and a night in a hotel but getting orientation first hand was worth it.

The 246 mile drive home including a 25 minute Supercharger visit was a breeze. The car was charged to 97% when I took possession and I arrived home with about 35% charge. The SC set the car to Chill mode for hand over because roads in the area were still snow and ice covered from a recent snow. I was just fine with that until I got a feel for how the car handled. Even in Chill the first time I passed a truck on a two lane road I was blown away. When I finally got around to switching to standard I was floored and ours isn't even a Performance.

I'm installing my Tesla Wall charger (240 volt/100 amp circuit) with the guidance of an electrician friend. Should get 48 MPH with the setting to 80 amps.

I've already received two software updates including the latest that includes the FSD visualization (beta) and expanded voice commands. Woohoo Off to the Races!
 

Brother T

Stealth Performance
Nov 12, 2019
63
40
Chicago
Well done! We ordered our cars on the same day and took delivery 2 days apart (me 12/18). We purchased a LR, AWD with FSD. I was informed from the getgo that it would be delivered from the Kansa City Service Center to our home. But when I was told it would arrive in KC on 12/16 and delivery would require 5-7 days to arrange I decided to take the bus to KC and pick it up in person. It required a 6 hour bus ride and a night in a hotel but getting orientation first hand was worth it.

The 246 mile drive home including a 25 minute Supercharger visit was a breeze. The car was charged to 97% when I took possession and I arrived home with about 35% charge. The SC set the car to Chill mode for hand over because roads in the area were still snow and ice covered from a recent snow. I was just fine with that until I got a feel for how the car handled. Even in Chill the first time I passed a truck on a two lane road I was blown away. When I finally got around to switching to standard I was floored and ours isn't even a Performance.

I'm installing my Tesla Wall charger (240 volt/100 amp circuit) with the guidance of an electrician friend. Should get 48 MPH with the setting to 80 amps.

I've already received two software updates including the latest that includes the FSD visualization (beta) and expanded voice commands. Woohoo Off to the Races!
Sounds like a thrilling and exhilarating experience! From what I know, the Model 3 pulls a maximum of 48A. Having 100 amp circuit is a great way to Futureproof your Tesla charging experience, in case you buy another Tesla.

Also, if you think the long range version floored you, wait till you get into a stealth/performance.The 28% increase in the G-force is enough to get that blood pumping straight to your head. I can only take a few bursts at a time before That nauseating feeling kicks in.
 
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voxelman

Member
Nov 17, 2019
34
27
Southeast Iowa
Sounds like a thrilling and exhilarating experience! From what I know, the Model 3 pulls a maximum of 48A. Having 100 amp circuit is a great way to Futureproof your Tesla charging experience, in case you buy another Tesla.

Also, if you think the long range version floored you, wait till you get into a stealth/performance.The 28% increase in the G-force is enough to get that blood pumping straight to your head. I can only take a few bursts at a time before That nauseating feeling kicks in.

Futureproof is the exact reason. I'm hoping we get my wife one so that we are both off the gas.

A friend of mine picked up his Performance M3 in Chicago on 12/22. I've been away since then and haven't been able to hit him up for a test ride yet. I'm sure it will happen soon though.
 

Brother T

Stealth Performance
Nov 12, 2019
63
40
Chicago
Do that test drive and post here of your experience. Like I have stated in another thread, if the LR AWD gets you to the Soprano-level scream, the Stealth/Performance will enable you to achieve teenaged girl’s high-pitch shrill! I guarantee you that you will never look at your Model 3 the same again.
 

vickh

Active Member
Dec 16, 2018
3,119
488
az
This is very helpful, thanks for the guide!

I have been calling the show rooms in Arizona almost daily for any updates on stealth inventory for the past week. I have not placed an order yet because they keep telling me they have nothing in inventory.

Are the delivery centers different from the show rooms?

If I place a LR AWD order right now, what if it takes 3 more months for more stealths to show up? I can keep pushing back the date? I don't want to purchase the LR AWD, I am happy waiting for a stealth.

In AZ there are two show rooms in Scottsdale malls, and a separate delivery center (they don't do sales very siloed) . I agree with the OP (great details) place the order and take your chances. PM me if you have more AZ questions.
 

Brother T

Stealth Performance
Nov 12, 2019
63
40
Chicago
In AZ there are two show rooms in Scottsdale malls, and a separate delivery center (they don't do sales very siloed) . I agree with the OP (great details) place the order and take your chances. PM me if you have more AZ questions.
Thank you. Also, I would place the order right away and keep looking out for the Stealth by calling the two showrooms in Scottsdale, the delivery center, and other showrooms/delivery centers in the six states surrounding Arizona to hunt down that Stealth and drive to go get it from there instead of paying two grand to have it shipped to Arizona. Like stated earlier, there are many ways to delay the order, even after a VIN (for normal LR AWD) is assigned. If you want a Stealth, do not settle for anything less. It is so worth it.
 

Brother T

Stealth Performance
Nov 12, 2019
63
40
Chicago
Update:

Heads-up! They have just increased the price of the Stealth Performance. I paid $2k over the price of a Dual-Motor Long Range for my Stealth in Dec 2019 but now that the Acceleration Boost upgrade is available for that same price, the Stealth’s price was increased to justify the existence. It now costs the same as a Performance trim. Yes, one can now order a Stealth right from the website instead of calling a Sales Rep. It is no longer a limited quantity off-menu item. However, as stated earlier, it now costs the same as a Performance version, with the PUP being a free option.

B5B9C451-0CF9-454C-8A00-B220ECB82AED.jpeg


This is terrible! Hunting down a Stealth was a rewarding experience. Almost like an Easter egg but Tesla ruined it and they blame Ford for meddling with their original nomenclature plan, forcing them to today’s S 3 X nomenclature. I hope enough people backlash to force them to go back to their previous strategy.

I’m also hearing that in IL (and possibly other states), the law has changed to no longer exempt sales tax on trade-ins over $10,000. If a trade-in is worth less than $10k, it is not taxed and you can subtract that value from the cost of your new Tesla and then calculate the sales tax on the left-over cost. But if it costs more than $10k, only $10k will be exempt from sales tax. See the example below for a better idea. Ugh!

BF8C0162-4976-4C3B-88CE-7130BE3C56EB.jpeg
 
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