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Rear Drive Unit Failed

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by ummagawd, May 28, 2019.

  1. ummagawd

    ummagawd Member

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    So with around 7600 miles on the clock on my P3D+, the rear drive unit has failed.

    Worth noting that I took delivery during 3rd quarter in 2018 (THE quarter when Tesla was pushing HARD to crank these out), AND I have self-installed an aftermarket sub/amp system. For what its worth, I've installed audio systems in my own cars for the last 8 cars and while that doesn't make me a pro, I also like to think I did it right/clean.

    The short: rear drive unit failed, they're replacing the entire unit, i feel l

    Full story:
    My wife charged up to 100% on this trip as she was going far. When the battery was at around 56%, she felt what she described as the rear "dragging". During this time a message pops up saying "Rear drive unit problem, car coming to a complete stop" or something along those lines (i wasn't there). The car eventually comes to a complete stop in the middle of the road at 9pm. The message to try exiting and re-entering comes up (and doesn't work). Car won't shift into D or R. Wife calls Tesla support to explain the situation, and was told to call 911 (really?). I call Tesla myself to explain the situation, and they say they won't have a tow truck for the next 4-5 hours. While I'm trying to work out a tow with Tesla, I get a call from the wife because the police showed up and want to push the car off the road. I hang up with Tesla and walk through the steps with the wife to get it into transport mode. The car had trouble staying in transport mode, moving about a foot before the car shuts down (black screen, rear motors lock up). It took several reboots and putting into transport mode before they're able to get the car off the road. I couldn't have my wife sitting 150+ miles away by herself in the night for 4-5 hours, so I decided we'd use our our tow services with AAA to get the car to her friends house 40 miles away. The next morning, Tesla towed the car to the nearest SC. To which I got a loaner and was explained that the rear drive unit failed, it's rare, it's a big job, they'll need the car for a while as they want to monitor it after replacement, and that they'd let me know when its ready. This happened thursday night, today is Tuesday. Still waiting. They did not mention anything about the aftermarket sub or whether or not it had anything to do with the failure.

    Does this change my love for the car? NO! I love it.

    BUt it does leave me wanting more out of Tesla's support. I don't think tesla's response of calling 911 was appropriate. I also feel like the claims about having redundancy with having a dual motor car didn't work out here. And the fact that it kept coming OUT of transport mode can be frustrating/dangerous.

    Anyways, just wanted to share as my googling of this issue has me concluded that while it has happened, it's not a super common thing.
     
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  2. outdoors

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    I think Tesla wanted your wife to call 911 because she could be in a potentially unsafe situation being stuck in the middle of the road in the dark at 9pm. Tesla roadside assistance doesn't know the exact situation. Most often police can dispatch a tow truck to get the car out of the middle of the road to a safer location faster than waiting for Tesla to arrive on scene. Also maybe the police could keep the car protected from being hit with those flashing lights they have.

    Glad to hear your optimism on the situation. Please keep us posted on or if Tesla provides any info on why the failure occured.
     
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  3. VT_EE

    VT_EE Active Member

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    I agree with @outdoors. Calling 911 is appropriate if she is stuck in the middle of the road.
     
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  4. StealthP3D

    StealthP3D Well-Known Member

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    Fortunately, it's a super rare thing. And unless your wiring job for the amp/sub-woofer messed something up, I'm sure Tesla will take care of you. I don't see how it could have unless you did something really unwise. I took delivery of my P3D on the last day of that hectic third quarter and it has been flawless.

    I'm actually surprised these Model 3's don't seem to have a single serious issue that is endemic to the model. No recalls either. Normally, people expect the first model year of a new platform to have some serious teething issues but, with the fleet mileage climbing every month and nothing serious surfacing, it looks to be a winner.

    Keep us updated on what they find.
     
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  5. Saghost

    Saghost Well-Known Member

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    You have the (somewhat dubious) privilege of being the first case of a dead model 3 drive unit I've read about.

    Of course, that means we wrong have any ideas what's wrong until Tesla tells you.

    They probably haven't seen it before, either - that's why they want to keep the car for a bit I bet.

    Replacing a drive unit is much, much easier than replacing an engine in a typical car, should only take them a couple hours - once they have a replacement ready for your car, but since this hasn't really been happening I doubt the service center has spares in inventory.
     
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  6. SD_Engnr

    SD_Engnr Active Member

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    Maybe the first complete failure, but my P3D+ front drive unit failed last September with around 900 miles on the clock. Big difference though, is that mine was still driveable.

    OP - It took Tesla around 2 weeks to fix mine, and that was out of sheer luck because there "happened" to be a front drive unit available in their system. This was during the Q3 rush, so it could have been much worse.
     
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  7. Saghost

    Saghost Well-Known Member

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    I don't remember reading about your case, but I would assume that the failure of your induction front drive unit and his switched reluctance rear drive unit are unrelated cases since they are such different pieces of hardware.
     
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  8. frankusb

    frankusb Member

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    Hmmmm, that's not consistent with what Elon said.
     
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  9. lolder

    lolder Member

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    There could have been a transaxle or reduction gear problem that caused it to be immobile. The "rear dragging" points to that.
     
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  10. ChrisH

    ChrisH Active Member

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    I’m fairly certain there have been at least two other drive unit failures posted on here several months ago.
     
  11. Saghost

    Saghost Well-Known Member

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    That's entirely possible, but I read the forums somewhat obsessively and I don't remember seeing a 3 with a rear motor failure.

    Not that my memory is infallible, of course - but they must be few and far between.
     
  12. ChrisH

    ChrisH Active Member

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    Model 3 Rear Drive Unit Failed?


    I wonder if this is the only one? I could have sworn I read about at least one other.
     
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  13. Leafdriver333

    Leafdriver333 Somewhat Active Member

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    Stopping in the middle of the road is not good. The front motor should have done more and the rear drive unit should go into neutral if the computer detected critical failure.
    Time for software revision.
     
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  14. zhu-

    zhu- Member

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    I recall someone here saying that the dual motor redundancy is only available if the front motor fails - If the rear fails, the front will be disabled as well? Is this true?
     
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  15. M109Rider

    M109Rider Active Member

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    True. But we don’t know all the facts yet about what’s wrong. A car can’t drive with one good motor, if the damaged motor won’t
    Let it. May be a rare case. Very few rear failures so far.

    Or we find out why it failed first. Maybe this type of failure prevents the car from driving even with one motor.
    I’m sure Even Elon can’t predict every scenario right. ?

    I’ve never heard that. Was it here on this forum you read that. Was that fact, or speculation ?
     
  16. Saghost

    Saghost Well-Known Member

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    I don't know how the 3 system architecture is set up, or if there have been changes to the S/X system, especially with the new Raven cars.

    The original dual motor S sent the accelerator position data directly to the rear motor power electronics, which then decided how much power the rear motor would provide and how much the front would.

    Failures in the rear drive unit power electronics (more common than failures of the mechanical parts) would thus be likely to stop the car, depending on exactly what broke - or so the forum discussion went four years ago.

    In practice, drive unit failures on the dual motor cars were pretty rare so we didn't really get a useful statistical sample of test cases, though as I recall most of them were side of the road events - I think the main discussion started just like this, with a car that was stuck on the side of the road and folks asking why the front drive unit couldn't carry on.
     
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  17. Az_Rael

    Az_Rael Supporting Member

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    There have been several. My neighbor had his fail on day 2 of ownership, luckily he was in his driveway when it happened. Here are a few I turned up in search

    "Car not Safe to Drive-- Pull over Safely"
    My drive unit failed, pyro fuse blew, both brake calipers were replaced and boy do I LOVE this car!
    Model 3: Breakdowns
    First Model 3 motor failure reported
    "Car May Not Restart" service message, no kidding
    Rear motor disabled
    Model 3 Defective Drive Unit : teslamotors
    REAR DRIVE UNIT FAILED | Tesla

    Most seem to fail early if they are going to fail. Doesn’t make me feel great about the non-unlimited mile drive unit warranty on my 3 though.
     
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  18. StealthP3D

    StealthP3D Well-Known Member

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    #18 StealthP3D, May 29, 2019
    Last edited: May 29, 2019
    Why? Do you know of ANY non-Tesla car, gas or electric, that has an unlimited mile drivetrain warranty?

    I didn't think so. But Tesla is known for having top-tier warranties. The LR Model 3 has an 8 year/120,000 mile drivetrain warranty (including the battery). I don't know of any warranty, from any competitor (gas or electric), that is better than that.

    So it's curious why this doesn't inspire confidence. Unless you just want to spread negativity about Tesla in general.
     
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  19. Az_Rael

    Az_Rael Supporting Member

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    Looks like you mis-quoted, but yeah, that is what I am here for, spreading Tesla negativity after having owned 3 of them. Funny how the older owners seem to get saltier about Tesla over time isn’t it.

    But, as for why it doesn’t inspire confidence, it is because Tesla had an 8 year unlimited mile drive unit warranty on the S and X, and Elon has stated the 3 drive units will be the million mile ones (even testing one to that long to much fanfare). And yet, they decided to lower the warranty for the 3 instead of leaving it the same. Almost like having an 8 year unlimited mile warranty would be too expensive on a supposed million mile drive unit. If the drive units were really good for that long, giving us the longer warranty would be an easy boost.
     
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  20. Saghost

    Saghost Well-Known Member

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    Misattributed quote. I actually do know of one, sorta. Rolls Royce warranties are by time only, or at least they were for a long time.

    Three years with unlimited miles isn't nearly as impressive as eight years with unlimited miles, but their bumper to bumper warranty does meet the criteria.
     

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