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Real World Experiences with Tesla

Discussion in 'Tesla Motors' started by dsm363, Sep 13, 2012.

  1. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    Will all of the intense discussion about Tesla's service pricing for the Model S, a few of us thought sharing our experiences with Tesla service might help provide some perspective and explain why most Roadster owners seem a little less upset about the pricing. I'm not saying it isn't expensive but that the service provided so far has been excellent and I've found you often get what you pay for.

    This thread should only be for Roadster owners and Model S owners who have had experiences with Tesla service (I realize it's basically only Roadster owners at this point but that will change).

    I'll start off:

    I am fortunate to have a backup car (Jetta TDI at the moment) so the few times the Ranger was only able to come during the day while I was at work I left the keys and signed paperwork on the driver's seat and he let himself into the garage, fixed it, and closed it after he left. How cool is that? They're also really nice people who love what they do and it shows. I've had them meet me at 6:30AM so I could hand them the keys and take off for work too before I did it the other way. When I had my rear tires replaced, they took the rims to Sears for me, mounted the tires then installed them again.

    The cost is high but Telsa is obviously in a growth phase and maybe this is part of their revenue stream to fund it. Not saying the price is right though. I think the $475-600 you pay yearly is ok and if you drive more than 12,500 miles you are responsible for getting it checked but not for an additional $475-600.
     
  2. AnOutsider

    AnOutsider S532 # XS27

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    Excellent idea Dave. I'm sure the others will chime in
     
  3. Charged_Up

    Charged_Up Member

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    "The cost is high but Telsa is obviously in a growth phase and maybe this is part of their revenue stream to fund it. Not saying the price is right though. I think the $475-600 you pay yearly is ok and if you drive more than 12,500 miles you are responsible for getting it checked but not for an additional $475-600."

    What if you drive only 6,000 miles per year? Do you only get service at 12,500? or do you pay annually?
     
  4. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    Thanks for starting this thread, David.

    As a new Roadster owner, I was a little freaked on a Friday night trip to Cupertino where it appeared I'd lost 20 miles off my battery. (Before anyone reacts to that, let me say it was ME, not the battery). I posted on the forum, saying since I was near Menlo Park, I'd stop in that morning and get the car checked. When I pulled in Saturday morning, Jake (then the service mgr) had come in on his day off and was waiting for me (someone had seen my post), they'd already pulled my logs remotely to see what was going on with the car ... in and out in less than 30 minutes.

    I assumed my first annual service would be pretty straightforward since there were no problems to report (okay, okay ... one. I asked them to tighten the cable on the softtop.) The inspection resulted in all four shocks being replaced at no cost. (I think that's what a lot of posters on another thread are missing - it is an in-depth inspection and when something is found, it is fixed under warranty.)

    I had a real issue with the PEM/battery - Tesla Roadside service was there promptly, took me home and my car to Menlo Park. They would have brought it home for me, but I was headed to Fremont for the Get Amp'd event - and it was waiting for me out front, detailed, fully charged for the ride home.

    Because I live near a service center, I don't have all the stories about Tesla Rangers showing up and quietly taking care of the car unbeknownst to me. But I can say that when at the Service Center, I've been taken to lunch, offered a car to drive (when they had one extra), given an office with wifi so I could work, etc. And to a person, Tesla employees have been great to deal with.

    I talk about the Tesla standard of customer service at the office. You all wonder why there are so many Tesla supporters on this forum? It's not only the car. It's the service. They've managed to turn the whole lot of Roadster owners into salespeople. I'm getting a 2nd Tesla vehicle because of the service I've experienced first-hand.
     
  5. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    It would be like every other warranty I've had for a car, once a year. I only drove 3,000 miles in my Jetta TDI last year (Roadster seemed more fun) but still had to take it in for service for my 20,000 mile checkup at 12,900 miles otherwise the warranty would be voided.
     
  6. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Late one night while driving long distance I texted our service manager to say my Roadster was producing error messages. It was indicating a problem with the cooling fans. To my surprise he texted back about 20 seconds later, telling me to call right away if the fans stopped working. At 1 am I emailed him to say that I made it home. In less than a minute I had a reply - he had actually stayed up to make sure I got home safely! Wow! Two days later my Ranger arrived to replace the fan unit under warranty.
     
  7. dadaleus

    dadaleus 4GETOIL P85#S70,FdrX,S85D

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    Tesla service is phenomenal. I can't think of any specific stories like these (haven't had any issues to speak of), but they are always incredibly responsive and accommodating. It's really 1st class. They always work with my schedule, and will fit me in when needed.
     
  8. daniel

    daniel Active Member

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    I got my Roadster in June of 2011. There were a few issues with it. My Gen II iPod Touch could not reliably connect either by the cable or Bluetooth. (Both worked some of the time but not all.) There were a few other issues which have slipped my mind, and I do not save emails far enough back to review them.

    Tesla sent a ranger out at no cost and he fixed everything other than the iPod issue, which appears to be an incompatibility between the annoying Alpine unit and the older iPods. (I ended up buying a new iPod Nano just for the car, and it's an ideal solution because it lives in the car and I don't have to bring my Touch with me every time I drive anywhere.) Excellent service.

    This year, at the one-year mark, the ranger came out to do my one-year service.

    He spent an afternoon and a morning (in effect one full day) working on my car. He cleaned out the PEM and checked everything thoroughly. He replaced several parts that were not defective but which he felt were not as good as the newer versions. He found and fixed a small crack at the charge port door which I had been unaware of, and he fixed the overly-tight charge-port door latch. He also replaced the cruise-control stalk because c/c had quit working.

    Nearly $1,200 is a lot of money ($600 for the service and nearly as much for mileage) but I knew that was the cost when I bought the car, and he spent a full day working on the car. I don't see how they're going to sell the Gen III if they charge this much for service, but the service itself is outstanding.

    Kind of in the same realm as "service" is all the help I got over the phone in those early days when I was learning about the car. They were always extremely friendly and helpful. And the ranger even brought some new tires with him, as the Roadster tires are hard to find (my local tire store could not get them). Like everything about the Roadster, tires are expensive, but at least I didn't have to have them shipped. On his first visit he brought me a set of snow tires (I drive my Roadster year-around; I didn't buy it to leave it sitting in the garage half the year; this is my daily driver).

    Bottom line: Tesla service is a lot of money but is absolutely first class.
     
  9. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    I don't think we know yet for the S, but maybe some do in private emails.

    (1) For the Roadster though, if you provide the tires will they change them as part of annual service if needed?
    (2) General tire question: What's the shelf life of Model S or Roadster tires these days? Is it a dumb idea to have an extra set in the garage before you need them, so that they're ready whenever the time comes?
     
  10. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    For the Roadster, they would change the tires for a small fee if I remember correctly (they had to pay Sears to mount the tires but don't think I was charged anything by Tesla). For my parent's Model S, I am ordering winter tires Tesla doesn't stock, Tesla service is going to pick them up from the local shop with the 19" rims they are buying from Tesla, have the tires mounted and install them on the Model S. That's good service.
     
  11. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    The general consensus seems to be 5-6 years for regular street tires. It may be significantly less for performance tires, but it's not clear how old is "too old".
     
  12. NigelM

    NigelM Recovering Member

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    I ordered the CF upgrades just before my 12k. Tesla called and asked if they could pick-up my Roadster and take it back to Miami (200m each way) to fit everything and do the 12k at the same time as it would be easier than sending the Ranger for 2 days of work. We arranged the date, they waived the Ranger fees, did the whole thing perfectly and detailed my car before they brought it back.

    Ranger has visited my house with the combination to my garage and fixed a minor issue while I was at work. Another time the Ranger dropped by to fix a TPMS problem, I was on vacation but he let himself in with the garage code I texted him; he fixed it, put it back in storage mode and closed up the garage.

    Needed new rear tires. Ranger was in the area (no fees charged) and he had some with him. Took my rims to Ford, changed the tires and had them back on my car 2 hrs later. They charged me a fair price price for the tires. Ranger was there about 4 hours in total, no charge. Ford scratched one rim, so Tesla replaced the rim no charge.

    On a purchase Tesla accidentally overcharged my credit card $3,000! As soon as I got my statement I noticed and called them, they fixed it immediately, apologized and then sent me a free Roadster cover worth $300.

    UMC stopped working. Called Tesla and they sent a new one, overnight delivery, under warranty. It arrived at my house about 16 hours after I called them.



    At least in Florida Tesla has been recruiting additional service personnel in advance of Model S hitting FL roads. I'm certain I won't see the Rangers for Model S as often as I did for my Roadster, but I still feel good about Tesla service being ready.
     
  13. daniel

    daniel Active Member

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    (1) I have snow tires put on my Roadster for winter. The Ranger would not be here at the right time of year. So that's a moot point for me.

    (2) It is my policy to buy tires from the ranger if I will need them before his next annual visit. I'm sure it doesn't hurt to have new tires sitting in my garage for less than a year. I really have no idea of tire shelf life though. I'm sure Tesla would ship tires, but I save the shipping cost by getting them from the ranger when he's here. in June he told me my rear summer tires were close to being worn down to where it's advisable to switch. I got the two new rear tires, but as I'm away for six weeks in summer, I'm waiting until spring to have them put on. Pretty soon I'll be putting on the winter tires.
     
  14. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Roadster tires are available at TireRack.com and are cheaper even with the shipping.
     
  15. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    There is really no way to tell. Under optimum storage conditions tires can last a very long time -- 9-10 years with no deterioration. In poor conditions (Like the ones you sometimes see outside on a rack in front of a service station or tire store.) three months and they might be shot. Basically, keep tires away from heat and ozone and don't store them vertically to make them last the longest. (And don't use them as a table either)

    Yes, but aging is not the primary reason. Tire manufacturers can and do change the "formulas" regularly and without any notification so by keeping tires around you'll not have the improvements of the latest tires. It only takes a couple of days to get tires to your door, and usually you know when you'll be needing a set of tires. After you wear out your first set, keep one of the take off tires for an emergency spare. That way you won't have to have a new tire sitting around. It only needs to be good enough to get you around while a replacement comes.
     
  16. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    Can I get a ballpark on "how much" cheaper? Are we talking table scraps ($10 on all four tires) or like 30% cheaper than from the Ranger?


    Thanks all for the deep info.
     
  17. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Here's an example:

    Yokohama A048 installed and balanced by Tesla: $1418.38.

    Yokohama A048 TireRack.com price (not installed and balanced): $1,036.00

    The Tesla prices aren't terrible or anything. In fact they may not be the exact same tires; A048s are available in a few different compositions. The TireRack price for the newer "LTS Lotus" version is $1,214.00.
     
  18. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    Let's assume for a moment that they are the same composition.

    $382 for installation and Tesla taking full responsibility if anything goes wrong (Nigel's example of the Ford rim damage) is probably worth it to me
     
  19. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Sure. I'm in a little different situation since I'm 400km from the service center. The Ranger fees add up quickly.
     
  20. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    Hopefully they'll offer something new for Roadster folks on this, in light of the recent $2400 plan for Model S.
     

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