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New Tesla Y defective - what would you do?

Hi, received delivery of new Tesla Y a couple of weeks ago. The rear drive unit has been whining very loudly since delivery. I immediately booked an appointment at a service center. After two visits, they agree it is defective and have proposed to replace it. Car has about 500 miles on it now. Question is should I allow this or should I be asking for a new car? The drive unit was defective from new and, as far as I understand it, it's a big job replacing it. However, Tesla is treating this as a warranty claim which from my perspective is not strictly true since the car was defective from the start.

What would you guys do in my situation?
 
IMO, if you are happy with the rest of the car (interior, paint, panel gaps, etc.), and you schedule the visit after you know they have already received the motor so the car doesn't sit on their lot for some undetermined amount of time, it should be straightforward and you will be on your way. I had to get my windshield and full glass roof replaced because of a defect in the glass at the top of the windshield, and incorrectly installed glass roof. Neither affected drivability, but it still took over 5 weeks for the parts to come in, but only 2 days to repair, so I didn't drop off until it was clear the parts were in and they were able to perform the job. The car wound up being better than new as far as the windshield and roof are concerned, and my interior noise is considerably less than when I took delivery.

Bottom line, I'd be more worried about it taking weeks or longer for the part to come in and the work to be completed vs. the car being "like new" after the replacement. Since you took delivery, you can't just return the car. You could try lemon law, but the rules vary by state. I've succeeded twice with different manufacturers with buybacks, but it took me many months of work to do so. In once case, 18 months, and I live in one of the "favorable" states for lemon law.
 
I already have the new console and heated steering wheel. I have no complaints except for the DU.

The reason I asked this questions is that the drive unit is presumably akin to the engine. If I bought an ICE car and it immediately broke down leaving the lot, I would also expect a replacement vehicle.

I fear replacing it is complicated and might result in other issues later. The service center said it was a big job but added “we’ve done a few before, so don’t worry”. Literally they said a few - which wasn’t that reassuring.

Nonetheless, sounds like I am stuck with the situation?
 
Replacement new car? 😀😀😀How about this non-Tesla story? I bought a new BMW 5 series in 2019. I brought it in to the stealer for its first scheduled service and oil change. The next day we took some friends out for dinner. On the way home on a dark country road the oil idiot light came on, so I pulled over immediately and shut the car off. As it turned out, the tech didn't fully tighten the oil pan bolt and both the engine and turbo were seized.

New car? Nope. I got loaner for a month while the new engine was shipped from Germany. If you want a new car, consult a lemon law attorney. That process only works if the car can't be fixed after several attempts.
 

glide

Active Member
Jun 6, 2018
4,761
6,599
USA
I already have the new console and heated steering wheel. I have no complaints except for the DU.

The reason I asked this questions is that the drive unit is presumably akin to the engine. If I bought an ICE car and it immediately broke down leaving the lot, I would also expect a replacement vehicle.

I fear replacing it is complicated and might result in other issues later. The service center said it was a big job but added “we’ve done a few before, so don’t worry”. Literally they said a few - which wasn’t that reassuring.

Nonetheless, sounds like I am stuck with the situation?
You would expect a dealer to give you a new car because of a faulty engine? Good luck with that too, I guess.
 
As others have said, if there is nothing wrong with the rest of the car I would take the DU replacement and not worry about it too much.

It may serve the same function as an engine in an ICE car but unlike an engine with its countless connections, wiring, fans, belts, hoses, mounts, etc. I would expect the DU is relatively simpler and more self-contained.
 
You should ask for free lifetime oil changes. 😉

Thats about all you'd get with a bad ICE engine on delivery day. They'd swap the motor, give you a loaner while you wait, and give you something to win future business (the 2~3 average oil changes current ICE cars get before you trade it in..)
 
I already have the new console and heated steering wheel. I have no complaints except for the DU.

The reason I asked this questions is that the drive unit is presumably akin to the engine. If I bought an ICE car and it immediately broke down leaving the lot, I would also expect a replacement vehicle.

I fear replacing it is complicated and might result in other issues later. The service center said it was a big job but added “we’ve done a few before, so don’t worry”. Literally they said a few - which wasn’t that reassuring.

Nonetheless, sounds like I am stuck with the situation?

It's true that the motor is akin to a car's engine, however it's far simpler, smaller, and less expensive. A DU runs about $750 and is the size of a large watermelon. The advice here is spot on. Ensure they have all of the parts before you bring it in, that they can secure a Tesla loaner for you, and go for it. I get it too - you shouldn't have to do this on a brand new car. Though you won't be out anything but the time it takes to drive to and from the service center. Every DU replacement I've heard of (admittedly few) has been a one and done sort of thing.
 

Az_Rael

Well-Known Member
Supporting Member
Jan 26, 2016
5,675
8,979
Palmdale, CA
I already have the new console and heated steering wheel. I have no complaints except for the DU.

The reason I asked this questions is that the drive unit is presumably akin to the engine. If I bought an ICE car and it immediately broke down leaving the lot, I would also expect a replacement vehicle.

I fear replacing it is complicated and might result in other issues later. The service center said it was a big job but added “we’ve done a few before, so don’t worry”. Literally they said a few - which wasn’t that reassuring.

Nonetheless, sounds like I am stuck with the situation?

It probably doesn’t make you feel better, but DU replacement is kinda a thing for Tesla ownership, so I wouldn’t blink an eye at needing one. Early S models were going through them like candy back in the day, and even the model 3 had an issue early on with DUs failing shortly after delivery. The service center has probably only done “a few” model Y DUs, but I will bet they have done a LOT of the other model DUs, unless this is a service center that just opened or something.
 

gaswalla

Model S,3,X.. CT with Austin delivery
Sep 23, 2012
3,700
4,480
San Diego
DU replacement is a straightforward repair for Tesla. The modular build (and their experience with this repair), makes it nothing you should worry about. It's still b.s that you have to go through this, though.
If you are happy with the fit and finish, just get the DU replaced, and you'll have a perfect car. The folks that received a perfect DU but paint blemishes or horrible gaps are in a much worse situation bc those repairs are not straightforward, at least for Tesla
 
Hi, received delivery of new Tesla Y a couple of weeks ago. The rear drive unit has been whining very loudly since delivery. I immediately booked an appointment at a service center. After two visits, they agree it is defective and have proposed to replace it. Car has about 500 miles on it now. Question is should I allow this or should I be asking for a new car? The drive unit was defective from new and, as far as I understand it, it's a big job replacing it. However, Tesla is treating this as a warranty claim which from my perspective is not strictly true since the car was defective from the start.

What would you guys do in my situation?
Hi,

Just curious...What was the circumstances when you hear the whining noise? What speeds? Was it when you were driving without load (cruising)? Also, did they try to tell you it was normal on your first visit? What did you have to do to convince them it was not normal and needed to be replaced? Also do you have Long range or Performance?

I have whining noise as well so hence liking to see your experience.
 

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