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Self-Serve Demo Drive

I tried Tesla's new self-serve demo drive today in Springfield, Virginia. It means cars are placed at several locations for self-pickup, either at Tesla showrooms or at Supercharger locations with no Tesla employee interaction. In my case, the Tesla Model Y Performance was waiting at a Supercharger location in Springfield, Virginia. There were no Tesla employees there and the entire process from scheduling to entering the car and leaving the car was done remotely.

As far as I know, no other car manufacturer does this.

A self-serve demo drive requires having or setting up a Tesla account. In my case I already had an account.

- Scheduling is initiated through the Tesla App and an appointment time and location is selected.
- A photo of the front and back of my driver's license was required, all done through the App interface.
- In about a minute the App to responded the appointment time and location are accepted.
- All further communication is through the Tesla App which now has an icon showing the appointment.
- On the day of demo drive, the App sends a notification to open the Tesla App and press a screen button when I arrive at the demo location.
-- A phone number is provided with direct access to a demo drive consultant for help. I needed to use this and connection was within 10 seconds.
- I wasn't sure of the exact location of the vehicle. It was at a new Supercharger location I wasn't aware of in a large mall 10 minutes from my house. My phone consultant directed me to the exact location and then honked the horn of the vehicle as I approached. Pretty impressive.
- I'm at the car ready to demo drive. The vehicle had 84% charge and 173 miles on the odometer. Though it was at a Supercharger location it was parked adjacent to the chargers.
- The App then took over and directed me to use my iPhone with the Tesla App open to unlock the vehicle and open the door. This was seamless and worked perfectly.
- I had use of the car for one hour. Vehicle had FSD Beta activated and was speed limited to 80mph.
- On return to the spot I picked up the car, I called the consultant to determine how to exit the car and lock it. He directed me to simply exit and leave the car as it was. The system would lock it, determine if it needed more charging. I presume follow on demo drivers would be directed to attach it to a Supercharger if required.

This is the most impressive least stressful demo drive I've ever taken of an automobile. No salesmen, no walking into a dealership knowing they are sizing me up, no signing forms, none of the crap one goes through normally to simply do a test drive. Welcome to the new age.


"Tesla Model Y passenger side view" by Daniel.Cardenas is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0.
Admin note: Image added for Blog Feed thumbnail
I received an email indicting that option was available, although it stated 30 min test drive. When I first did a test drive it seamless as well but went to a service center. I'm planning on test driving a model X.
I went w.ith a neighbor on a self-demo of a MY. It was a disaster. The car was dirty. The phone call with the Tesla employee who gave an overview was over-complicated and my neighbor and his wife were intimidated. The wife refused to drive it, too complicated. This was an abject failure.