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Repairing a salvage Tesla Model S P85D

Discussion in 'Model S' started by MoGosh, Jun 30, 2017.

  1. MoGosh

    MoGosh Member

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    So this is a first time post for me. I've read others experience with salvage Tesla's and wanted to see if the community has some input or guidance. I purchased a loaded 2014 P85D from a salvage insurance auction.
    The car runs and drives but has the rear smashed. I live in Orange county and can find most of the parts like bumper and fender off eBay but I need a good bodyshop or person who can repair and we'll aluminum as on the rear of this car.
    I'm at the first stages of this and decided to take the dive as its genuinely a dream of mine to learn about Tesla's and actually be able to get one running regularly.

    Any help or advice is appreciated.
     

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  2. Mike K

    Mike K Member

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    If I may offer up some advise as a past owner of a salvage Model S: take a pass. Scrap it and strip the parts that are good and find another car to build using those parts. This car appears to be all sorts of messed up and unless you can do much of the body work yourself you're going to find that this isn't nearly as cheap as you might have thought.

    I had a 2013 that had genuinely minor front end damage other than a frame rail that wasn't true to the degree of about a quarter of an inch front to back. Other than that, the car was put back together, looked great and drove perfectly. In fact, I think the guy I sold it to still drives it. The cost to repair that frame rail was going to be about 10k though and that was the low estimate.

    There are a ton of fixable salvage cars that come through the pipeline that look like great projects. In my opinion, this isn't one of them.
     
  3. MoGosh

    MoGosh Member

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    Is aluminum repairs just that expensive all around or is it just Tesla certified shops that ate that expensive. I'm thinking of getting the dents pulled at a non Tesla shop as it is just body work. There are places that are certified to work with aluminum bodies like the f150 or the Tesla especially since Tesla certified shops will not work on salvage cars.
     
  4. ArizonaP85

    ArizonaP85 Member

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    Please post the cost of your estimates. I'm afraid that they will shock you how high they are. This is not "just body work" like pulling dents in F150 fenders: those are body on frame trucks. Teslas are unibody where the body and its shape form the structure and give it strength. Both those quarter panels are badly wrinkled, showing major deformation and compromised strength. Mike K's advice looks wise.
     
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  5. MoGosh

    MoGosh Member

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    Fair enough. I got what I believe is a good deal on this car probably for good reason so I'm going to try to get a couple of estimates and see if its a viable option to have it fixed. Any suggestion on how to find a non-tesla repair shop that works with aluminum?
     
  6. jelloslug

    jelloslug Active Member

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    I have repaired salvage cars before and personally, I would use that one to fix one that has front end damage. Even if you do find a shop that will work on that car, they won't be able to get parts from Tesla unless they are a certified shop.
     
  7. Mike K

    Mike K Member

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    Look for any shop that works on an Audi A8. Still though, these are going to be expensive shops and if they are not Tesla certified they can't get parts from Tesla. So you'll be 100% dependent on salvage parts. I'm not saying this car isn't fixable. I just don't think the juice is worth the squeeze here. Keep in mind that you can just have a Tesla certified shop spec out the repair for you. If you're into it for not a lot then maybe even a $30,000 repair is worth it to you. In that scenario you could even get it re-certified with Tesla in which case your battery and powertrain warranties would be reinstated. Supercharging as well though there's workarounds for that that don't require certification.
     
  8. MoGosh

    MoGosh Member

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    Honestly if I had 30k to fix this car that may not have been the worst idea but I'm trying to keep it at 10k or so if at all possible.
     
  9. princeofhouse

    princeofhouse Member

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  10. Btr_ftw

    Btr_ftw Court Jester

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    That rear ended cannot be repaired safely in the least bit, you'll need two rear panels as well as an entire rear section. Aluminum can't be pulled like steel (think of a soda can)

    You'll also need new rear bumper support, bumper with rear sensors and a new hatch just to start.

    To keep it under 15k and not end up buying a new car you'll have to buy a rear half of a car and have the body shop weld it onto this one. It can be done.
     
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  11. MoGosh

    MoGosh Member

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    Thanks guys. I'll look into sime shops and see if I can get an entire rear replacement and if it doesn't work out possibly just selling the car to a dismantler or auctioning it off again. I'm not sure I can personally dismantle this car to part it out so if things don't work out it'll be send as is. Besides copart any ideas who may need a car like this if I end up selling?

    As for repairs i guess I had Rosey glasses on because I imagined I would be able to at the least pull the rear back into some form and replace the outer quarter panels but from what I'm hearing from you guys aluminum can't even be pulled like that.

    As for parts the sensors are nearly all in tact and I already have the bumper gaurd, outer bumper cover and the new replacement lift gate but without being able to pull the sides out it sounds like I won't even get that far. Hopefully I don't get hosed selling it although I likely will. The car should be great for parts as everything else is in working order not to mention that it has every option ie. Climate package, autonomous drive, headliner, upgraded sound, air suspension, pan roof ........
     
  12. princeofhouse

    princeofhouse Member

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    well again Rich would be the one to talk to, he has to build his second tesla so he may have use for parts so on.
     
  13. Btr_ftw

    Btr_ftw Court Jester

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    Does it run and drive and are any airbags blown?

    Message me I might be interested
     
  14. Fattchris

    Fattchris Member

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    Screenshot_20170701-201547.png @MoGosh this may be what you need...
     
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  15. Otmar

    Otmar EV Modder

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    Cut the back off and make it a pickup-sedan! Looks like a perfect candidate for something like that. :)
     
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  16. MoGosh

    MoGosh Member

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    The airbags are in tact, the car runs and drives, th air suspension works, everything mechanical seems in order. The car also has v1 autonomous driving abilities.

    I really like the idea of cutting the back off and welding on the back of another Tesla and maybe even adding a cage for additional support. Going to check on costs for that. making it a pickup sedan is interesting but I would still need to redo the quarter panels to make it look normal.

    I found a local guy who has every single part including the entire rear end so I'll see what I can setup. Also found some aluminum fabricators but I'm not sure they will be up for something like this.

    Anyone else have suggestions? They are much appreciated.
     

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  17. princeofhouse

    princeofhouse Member

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    If you do not mind the question.

    What are you current costs?

    How much did that wreck set you back?
     
  18. Don85D

    Don85D Member

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    The pickup truck creation has merit. Take a look at pickup tricks in Australia where they use sedan front ends and attach aluminium flat bed with sides. They look fine and I'm sure that the aluminium rear section must be available separately.
     

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  19. McRat

    McRat Active Member

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    Holden UTE, like an El Camino.
    holden-ve-ute-3-big.jpg
     
  20. seclinton

    seclinton Member

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    Both rear horizontal frame rails are toast. Quarter panels, hatch, whole bumper assembly, trunk pan, massive structural repair needed.

    I'd ballpark this at $30-40k to repair.

    Please read my experience to understand basic costs

    Black Beauty, damaged.
     

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