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My Experience bringing a Tesla to Dubai

ffafb007

New Member
Oct 28, 2015
4
12
United Arab Emirates
Hey everyone,

I just wanted to share my experience and hurdles of bring the Tesla Model S to Dubai from the US.

I figured I would share my experience to serve as a reference in case anyone is thinking importing a Tesla to Dubai. I had to deal with small hurdles and wished there was a reference of what to do.

At the Port:

The first hurdle was to get the car out of the container, after it has run out of battery. After a couple of hours and trying to reach Tesla about how to jump start the car, I found the negative and positive behind the nose cone and with a jumper cable was able to get enough juice in the car to back it out of the container.

Charging:

I was able to fly in a Tesla recommended electrician from the UK to help install the wall connector. I was worried about the local knowledge of installing EV car chargers and didn't want to take the risk. That was an entire day's work but was installed and working fine.

Insurance

I know Ames was struggling with finding an insurance company to do a comprehensive insurance in Dubai, happy to say I found one (took a while but there is one that will do it). The only issue you might face is, God forbid, if the car gets hit, there are no authorised body shops to fix your Tesla. Meaning you will have to ship the car back to the closest city with a certified body shop (in our case in Dubai I believe that would be the UK).

Registration

At the Vehicle Passing centers, before being able to register the car, I found out the hard way that some of the passing centers don't have the equipment to handle Electric Vehicles. I was stuck at this place trying to explain to the people working there that the car is Electric and therefore you cannot do an emissions testing, they told me that it cannot be done and gave me a list of things I would have to do before anyone could pass my car. To avoid all that, I recommend the Belhasa Center in Nad AlHamar, they are equipped and often not crowded. Also the supervisor knows what a Tesla is (What a relief) and getting it passed is a painless process

Servicing

This has been covered before, I believe you can fly in a Ranger from Europe to service the car for you at home. The only thing it will not cover is in case there are any issues with warranty you will have to ship the car to a Tesla Service Center.

It would be amazing for Tesla to get one of the local bodyshops certified, this way more underwriters would be willing to do a comprehensive insurance, and in case of an accident there would be a local shop to fix it. This would take care of virtually all the matters of having a Tesla in Dubai. I know they have no plans of opening in Dubai anytime soon but their cars are too awesome not to enjoy in Dubai.

FB
 

Johan

Ex got M3 in the divorce, waiting for EU Model Y!
Feb 9, 2012
7,477
9,595
Drammen, Norway
Cool story. I hope the battery didn't take damage from sitting too long at very low state of charge. But if it charged up nicely after you jolted the 12V battery I'm sure you'll be fine.
 
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Ames

Member
May 27, 2013
659
376
Abu Dhabi, UAE
@FB

Thank you for the tips. I am planning a similar post for Abu Dhabi when my P90D arrives this December (hopefully, hopefully, hopefully). I was expecting all sorts of hassle with the vehicle testing part.
 
FB,

Welcome to the forums, and congratulations on your Model S. It's always great to hear about the lengths enthusiasts can go to get their hands on this marvelous vehicle. Any information about the entire process is very much welcomed.

Can you share more information about your car, which options did you choose, and more importantly, did you choose an EU or US spec car? I would guess there's quite a few here who have ordered US spec vehicles, but I would certainly go for the European version, just like Ames (his route seems the best way to get a Tesla here, which he found out the harder way) :)

Edit: Just re-read the OP post, and it says: "I just wanted to share my experience and hurdles of bring the Tesla Model S to Dubai from the US." I take it it is a US-spec car, but then, in case of a problem, the car needs to be shipped back to the US, correct?
 
Last edited:

mikeash

Active Member
Oct 26, 2014
1,105
699
Fairfax, VA, USA
"I was able to fly in a Tesla recommended electrician from the UK to help install the wall connector."

This really puts the (extremely minor) struggle of finding a good electrician to install a charger in the US into perspective. Wow!

I hope you enjoy your car. It sounds like Tesla is starting to expand into the Middle East (there are three superchargers in Jordan now, and I assume some sort of sales to go with them) so you may not have to wait too long before some more local service, support, and repair is available.
 

ffafb007

New Member
Oct 28, 2015
4
12
United Arab Emirates
Thanks ATC,

The options for the cars were as follows:

Model S P85D (US Spec)
Midnight Silver Metallic Paint
All Glass Panoramic Roof
21" Grey Turbine Wheels
Grey Next Generation Seats
Glossy Obeche Wood Décor
Black Alcantara Headliner
Carbon Fiber Spoiler
Tesla Red Brake Calipers
Autopilot Convenience Features
Premium Interior and Lighting
Smart Air Suspension
Ultra High Fidelity Sound
Rear Facing Seats

I'm not sure if you absolutely must send it back to the US in case of any issue, I would assume any Tesla service center can take care of it. The body shop work is the main issue and that should be doable anywhere with an authorised body shop. The reason I bought a US spec is because I was spending 2 months driving it there. Which was good, because some minor issues came up with it and Tesla fixed it for me while I was there.

I'm trying to convince Tesla to get a local body shop authorised. I know it's not within their plan, but really it isn't a big cost to them and it would help convince more people to buy the car here. I think the more demand popping up in Dubai, the quicker they would set up shop. After all, ADIA (Abu Dhabi Investment Authority) used to be a Tesla shareholder and even had a board seat at one point.
 
Thanks ATC,

The options for the cars were as follows:

Model S P85D (US Spec)
Midnight Silver Metallic Paint
All Glass Panoramic Roof
21" Grey Turbine Wheels
Grey Next Generation Seats
Glossy Obeche Wood Décor
Black Alcantara Headliner
Carbon Fiber Spoiler
Tesla Red Brake Calipers
Autopilot Convenience Features
Premium Interior and Lighting
Smart Air Suspension
Ultra High Fidelity Sound
Rear Facing Seats

I'm not sure if you absolutely must send it back to the US in case of any issue, I would assume any Tesla service center can take care of it. The body shop work is the main issue and that should be doable anywhere with an authorised body shop. The reason I bought a US spec is because I was spending 2 months driving it there. Which was good, because some minor issues came up with it and Tesla fixed it for me while I was there.

I'm trying to convince Tesla to get a local body shop authorised. I know it's not within their plan, but really it isn't a big cost to them and it would help convince more people to buy the car here. I think the more demand popping up in Dubai, the quicker they would set up shop. After all, ADIA (Abu Dhabi Investment Authority) used to be a Tesla shareholder and even had a board seat at one point.


Awesome!! Great choice of options :) Care to share (privately, if you prefer), which insurance did you choose, and how much did that cost you? How did you drive in the US for 2 months, did you have the car registered there too?

BTW, It wasn't ADIA, but rather TAQA that had 7% stake at TM, and I am sure they aren't very proud of how they handled that investment :)
 

2krazykats

Member
Aug 20, 2015
289
26
CO
What a fascinating post... Your adventure in getting a car to the Middle East makes any issues I'll have to deal with for my future Tesla pale in comparison. I find it interesting that people in the ME are interested in fossil fuel alternatives considering that a large percentage of many ME countries' GDP is tied to oil. I suppose it can also be seen as promising that other people in the world view fossil fuel to be not sustainable. Or maybe they just like kick-butt fast luxury cars. :smile:
 

ffafb007

New Member
Oct 28, 2015
4
12
United Arab Emirates
What a fascinating post... Your adventure in getting a car to the Middle East makes any issues I'll have to deal with for my future Tesla pale in comparison. I find it interesting that people in the ME are interested in fossil fuel alternatives considering that a large percentage of many ME countries' GDP is tied to oil. I suppose it can also be seen as promising that other people in the world view fossil fuel to be not sustainable. Or maybe they just like kick-butt fast luxury cars. <img src="images/smilies/smile.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Smile" smilieid="26" class="inlineimg">
<br>
<br>
Thanks,<br>
<br>
I can't speak for everyone here in the ME, but for me it's more of a personal and technical matter. From a personal side, I'm a huge fan of Elon Musk and what he is doing. His story motivated me out of a tough spot in my life. So I think about 50% of the reason I got the car was because of him. Also, being a tech investor and big time gamer, the car is just right. It's futuristic, fast (really fast), safe, and just all around the best car ever. <br>
<br>
From a technical side, it's not about oil being cheap or not. ICE cars are not as efficient as EVs. I don't have anything against ICE vehicles, I just believe that ICE should be reserved for supercars, because they are engineered better. I believe all cars, besides super and hyper cars, should become EV as soon as possible. ICE have a lot of moving parts and after 100k km things start to break down. And then it's in the shop frequently. <br>
<br>
From a sustainable point of view, I think about it this way. Let's say I had a Billion Dollars in my account (I don't currently), and I'm on my way to starbucks and I also happen to have coupon for a free coffee. Would I throw the coupon in the trash and pay cash just because I have so much of it? It's a bad example I know but just trying to make a point. It's the same thing in the ME. The sun is there and it's free. Why waste fossil fuel when we have the gift of a free source of energy?<br>
<br>
Imagine we didn't have to use the subsidized oil to gas to fuel our cars, and consume it for things that solar and clean energy could've taken care of? Oil and Gas demand will still be there, and these would be sold rather than burned locally. More money earned, more projects to be made, more jobs. It's just better all around. <br>
<br>
Of course it does help that Tesla's are kick butt fast luxury cars.

- - - Updated - - -

What a fascinating post... Your adventure in getting a car to the Middle East makes any issues I'll have to deal with for my future Tesla pale in comparison. I find it interesting that people in the ME are interested in fossil fuel alternatives considering that a large percentage of many ME countries' GDP is tied to oil. I suppose it can also be seen as promising that other people in the world view fossil fuel to be not sustainable. Or maybe they just like kick-butt fast luxury cars. <img src="images/smilies/smile.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Smile" smilieid="26" class="inlineimg">

Thanks

I can't speak for everyone here in the ME, but for me it's more of a personal and technical matter. From a personal side, I'm a huge fan of Elon Musk and what he is doing. His story motivated me out of a tough spot in my life. So I think about 50% of the reason I got the car was because of him. Also, being a tech investor and big time gamer, the car is just right. It's futuristic, fast (really fast), safe, and just all around the best car ever.

From a technical side, it's not about oil being cheap or not. ICE cars are not as efficient as EVs. I don't have anything against ICE vehicles, I just believe that ICE should be reserved for supercars, because they are engineered better. I believe all cars, besides super and hyper cars, should become EV as soon as possible. ICE have a lot of moving parts and after 100k km things start to break down. And then it's in the shop frequently.

From a sustainable point of view, I think about it this way. Let's say I had a Billion Dollars in my account (I don't currently), and I'm on my way to starbucks and I also happen to have coupon for a free coffee. Would I throw the coupon in the trash and pay cash just because I have so much of it? It's a bad example I know but just trying to make a point. It's the same thing in the ME. The sun is there and it's free. Why waste fossil fuel when we have the gift of a free source of energy?

Imagine we didn't have to use the subsidized oil to gas to fuel our cars, and consume it for things that solar and clean energy could've taken care of? Oil and Gas demand will still be there, and these would be sold rather than burned locally. More money earned, more projects to be made, more jobs. It's just better all around.

Of course it does help that Tesla's are kick butt fast luxury cars.
 

Ames

Member
May 27, 2013
659
376
Abu Dhabi, UAE
"I was able to fly in a Tesla recommended electrician from the UK to help install the wall connector."

This really puts the (extremely minor) struggle of finding a good electrician to install a charger in the US into perspective. Wow!

My solution was to pay a local electrician that sounds like he knows what he's doing to install my plug, advertise it on PlugShare and then test it out on somebody else's $100,000 Model S. I'm still waiting :tongue:
 
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Reactions: Galve2000

tomp

Member
Dec 3, 2013
425
33
Durham, NC
There are 3 superchargers in Jordan?? I don't see them on the Tesla maps or list (see here). can you confirm/clarify?
"I was able to fly in a Tesla recommended electrician from the UK to help install the wall connector."

This really puts the (extremely minor) struggle of finding a good electrician to install a charger in the US into perspective. Wow!

I hope you enjoy your car. It sounds like Tesla is starting to expand into the Middle East (there are three superchargers in Jordan now, and I assume some sort of sales to go with them) so you may not have to wait too long before some more local service, support, and repair is available.
 

scarlet

Member
Dec 25, 2014
36
0
Greater Manchester UK
Production complete. The car is probably on a train somewhere between the West and East cost before it gets shipped to Norway.


Ames when did you finish production?
Cars bound for Norway usually go from Long Beach to Bremerhaven and then onto Drammen
see WWL website Global Shipping Logistics Solutions | Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics in track&trace enter your VIN number in cargo id
I cant see your VIN at the moment
You can see earlier production norwegian VIN examples from google doc going this way
 

Ames

Member
May 27, 2013
659
376
Abu Dhabi, UAE
Ames when did you finish production?
Cars bound for Norway usually go from Long Beach to Bremerhaven and then onto Drammen
see WWL website Global Shipping Logistics Solutions | Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics in track&trace enter your VIN number in cargo id
I cant see your VIN at the moment
You can see earlier production norwegian VIN examples from google doc going this way

I lost visibility of My Tesla so I am guessing with 3 weeks in production it was complete around the 18th of October. We have delivery confirmed for early December.

VIN 105117.
 

mikeash

Active Member
Oct 26, 2014
1,105
699
Fairfax, VA, USA
There are 3 superchargers in Jordan?? I don't see them on the Tesla maps or list (see here). can you confirm/clarify?

They are listed on supercharge.info. The "discuss" link for them takes you to this Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/ManaseerG/posts/399840833559676

There are a few pictures there and a brief explanation (in Arabic, wacky machine translation available). I don't really know what the deal is and I especially don't know why Tesla doesn't list them officially, but it looks like they do exist.
 

Luay11

New Member
Oct 3, 2016
1
0
Kuwait
@FB

Thank you for the tips. I am planning a similar post for Abu Dhabi when my P90D arrives this December (hopefully, hopefully, hopefully). I was expecting all sorts of hassle with the vehicle testing part.


Hi

Did you manage researching how the extreme desert heat (60c/140f) will effect the batteries? And how capable is the air conditioner in that environment?
One more question .....How would the air conditioning when pushed to its limits effect the cars driving range?

Thanks
 

Ames

Member
May 27, 2013
659
376
Abu Dhabi, UAE
Hi

Did you manage researching how the extreme desert heat (60c/140f) will effect the batteries? And how capable is the air conditioner in that environment?
One more question .....How would the air conditioning when pushed to its limits effect the cars driving range?

Thanks

Hi Luay,

According to a friendly Tesla Ranger we now have 41 Teslas in the UAE, 37 Model S and 4 Model X. They have battled through the hot summer admirably. I don't find the ac any more or less capable than any other car I have owned out here.

I would say from my own use around 8% of the range goes to keeping the car cool. Remember the car cooling system is designed to handle much higher heat loads than ambient temperature e.g. during Supercharging or Ludicrous acceleration to 60 mph in 2.8 seconds.

Here is a pic of my dash while cruising at motorway speeds on a typical hot day...49 celcius.
IMG_20160724_1300324.jpg
 

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