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Tesla making changes to inventory car purchase process

Discussion in 'Model S: Ordering, Production, Delivery' started by Atebit, Jan 16, 2014.

  1. Atebit

    Atebit Member

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    Hi, first post here. I've been on the fence about a MS since this past Christmas, and have been exploring the options with my very helpful local Advisor. I just learned last night that Tesla is now requiring inventory cars must be "on the ground" for 90 days before they will be available for sale. This is a bummer for me, as I had a chance at at inventory car around the beginning of the year, and then another one earlier this week, neither of which meet the 90 day criteria, for at least another 60 days or so.

    So at this point, I might as well place a custom order, as it doesn't appear that there will be any cars in inventory optioned out the way I want them that will reach "maturity" substantially before a custom order would be delivered.

    Things seem to be changing constantly at Tesla, which makes it tough for someone considering such a significant purchase. But, I guess that's all part of being on the leading edge for Tesla, and we're all along for the ride.

    So given that, looking forward to placing my custom order soon...
     
  2. gg_got_a_tesla

    gg_got_a_tesla Model S: VIN P65513, Model 3 Res Holder

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    Atebit, I understand your POV as a prospective buyer but, as a current owner, I'm applauding here. You may have seen endless complaints, including from myself, about not having access to a Model S loaner when our cars are in for service. This problem is more pronounced at busy service centers such as the ones in Calif. Driving an Enterprise gasser POS as a loaner is not an attractive prospect and is one reason that I've been putting off my pseudo-annual service visit till I can be assured of an MS loaner at my local service center. Call me spoilt but, it's what it is :)
     
  3. Chipper

    Chipper Active Member

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    Welcome, Atebit! Sometimes that ride seems more like a roller-coaster but then...so does my ride in the Model S! Sometimes the road gets a bit bumpy. Most of the time it is smooth sailing. The really GOOD thing is, if you stick around here much you are kept aware of the "leading edge" and at least have an idea of what is happening in Tesla's world. Personally, I have only been a part of it for a few months but they have been whirlwind months that I would not trade for the previously mundane. I hope you feel the same a few months from now. If you are anything like me one thing I can guarantee, driving a Tesla is like nothing you have ever experienced previously.
     
  4. AnOutsider

    AnOutsider S532 # XS27

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    I'm with gg. This is a big step in the right direction for owners (and you may be a future on ). This should keep a fleet of cars in service for customer loaners and by the time they are eligible for sale, there should be another on the way to replace it.
     
  5. stevezzzz

    stevezzzz R;SigS;P85D;SigX

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    Welcome, Atebit! This is a great place to hang out and feed your Tesla addiction.

    As for your situation, it sounds as though Tesla has heard the grumbling from owners who were promised P85 loaners during service visits for their MS, and then got stuck with POS Enterprise rentals because the loaners (what you on the other side so quaintly call 'inventory') were being sold as fast as they came in. :biggrin:

    If you read extensively in the TMC archives, what you'll find is that most of the grumbling around here has to do with corporate communications: Tesla's tendencies either to say one thing and do something slightly different, or fail to say anything at all when they change something. The cars themselves are a fabulous achievement, and a delight to drive; so we tend to chalk up the comm snafus to growing pains and try, in our bumbling, collective way, to nudge the corporate ship in the direction of openness and full disclosure. And toward keeping promises, as in the case of the service loaners.
     
  6. agileone

    agileone CDN P#40

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    Get in line, and buy the car, you won't regret it!

    And then in six months, when you bring your car in for little fixes, you will be happy no one ruined your service experience by having you drive a Chrysler Town and Country, like it happened to me, last month :).

    Selling brand new loaners was so stupid ...
     
  7. Krugerrand

    Krugerrand Active Member

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    It was just a matter of time for this policy to be put in place and the loaner program to work as always intended. Some have been unable or unwilling to consider the rock and hard place that Tesla has been in; huge demand beyond what anyone expected or could have imagined, people standing with their pocketbooks out in stores, tremendous pressure from many sources to beat guidance and expectations, and a significant constraint on batteries simply led to Tesla having to sell those loaner cars. As the battery constraint lifts, the pressure to sell loaners 'before their time' is also lifted and customers can be given the treat promised of a top-of-the-line Model S while their own car is being serviced.
     
  8. MassX1317

    MassX1317 Addicted to TMC

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    I think this is a great idea...although my wife and I are going to test drive next weekend and the available loaners for sale are few, so we may not be able to resist ordering new!
     
  9. pgiralt

    pgiralt Active Member

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    Atebit, welcome to the forums. While I can certainly understand your frustration as a potential buyer, I have to agree with everyone else that as an owner, I hugely applaud this change. Getting a loaner has been challenging lately with my local service center only having a single loaner lately after selling their 4 other loaners and not having any cars to replace them. When you finally do become an owner, you will greatly appreciate this change too.
     
  10. Krugerrand

    Krugerrand Active Member

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    It wasn't stupid, as indicated by the recent boost in share price and the fact that there are now just that many more happy Model S owners on the road spreading the word. Some understanding and patience goes a long way, especially considering what Tesla is trying to do for the world. I get it that people feel cheated when they don't get what was promised. When I'm having a bad day, it annoys the crap out of me when I get a Quarter Pounder instead of the Big Mac I ordered. On a good day, not so much...people make mistakes. I'm quite sure that Tesla feels badly they've been unable to satisfy everyone in regard to the topic, but big picture here - please and thanks.
     
  11. andrewket

    andrewket 2014 S P85DL, 2016 X P90DL (soon 100)

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    I also believe this is the right move for Tesla. We need MS loaners.

    Tesla should consider creating a customer advocate role. Someone who splits their time between interaction with customers, approving all public communication, and advocating on behalf of the customer inside Tesla.

    A
     
  12. Tommy

    Tommy Member

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    I think the new policy is a win-win for everyone. Tesla will still sell the same # of cars in any given quarter, a stable fleet of loaners for existing customers and a more affordable car for the budget minded customer due to the new time limits and resulting mileage increases.
     
  13. Atebit

    Atebit Member

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    To be honest, I thought that the way had implemented the Inventory program (prior to this change) must've made it really hard on the Advisors, service folks and the existing owners. But that wasn't going to stop me from taking advantage of it. :) But I agree, this will add a bit of determinism for Tesla, current owners and potential owners alike, which is always a good thing from a business perspective.
     
  14. NuclearPowered

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    My first though is that this would be bad for those trying to snag a deal on the right loaner, like myself. After reading your comment this should actually improve the affordability of the loaner fleet for those looking to grab a deal on a non-new car. It should eliminate many of the customers that do not need the financial incentive to buy though the normal method, but would rather not wait. That should leave higher mileage, slightly used, new cars for those looking for a deal.
     
  15. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    I was told (in LA) that all the service inventory was sold out and there was no plans to replace it. Then later was told that there was a plan to make 100 60's for service use.

    A FWIW the cars would rotate. First they would appear on the sales floor (I was shocked to see 60 for less that $75K in on a store floor recently) rotation would be; store floor, store test drive, service loaner, sell when customer requests it.
     
  16. Newscutter

    Newscutter Member

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    For current owners this new policy is a god-send, no doubt.
    However, couple considerations:

    1-- I hope they are making clear exceptions to the policy in the case of CURRENT Model S owners who have had a car declared a total loss in an accident or disaster. These aren't people choosing to be impatient, they are current customers eager to get their lives back to normal WITH a new Tesla. As the fleet grows this scenario will be more commonplace.

    2-- The inventory/loaner fleet needs to be rotated more sporadically. Selling off all the cars at the same time just to pump up the quarterly numbers means huge swaths of time where no inventory cars are available for purchase, which is foolish for a whole host of reasons-- one of which I will explain from experience.

    I've been trying to eke out as much life in my current car as I can and deferring a new build order until an AWD Tesla (be it MS or MX) becomes available. However, twice now I've been close to having an immediate need to replace the old car (once due to mechanical issues, once due to an accident) and in both those scenarios it would have meant a very close look at the available inventory cars as I can't be without wheels for the 2-3 months it takes to order new.

    I'm sure there are lots of other prospective and "near" owners who would instantly transform to buyers if their need for a car became suddenly immediate (for whatever reason). If the fleet isn't staggered a lot of those "immediate/sudden need buyers" will be calling Tesla and finding that none (or very few) of the cars are eligible. Turning those people away to alternative cars (because they have GET SOMETHING) means those buyers are probably out of the market for a new car for, perhaps, YEARS. I know in my case that if insurance totals my old car that it is unlikely I can get a Tesla now because there were so few inventory cars left after Q4 sales and a multi-month rental isn't feasible. In fact, before Christmas when my old car had it's mechanical problems, my eye was on a new inventory car with less than 50 miles on it-- it was the only close match to my specs-- and under the new rules it would have been unavailable. In the end my car's issues turned out best-case scenario but if they hadn't I'd have that Tesla now... under the old rules.

    Not all inventory buyers are just impulsive or impatient. There are some very good reasons to sell inventory cars to customers on an as-needed basis, but especially to current owners as insurance replacements.
     
  17. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    This is definitely the right thing to do for the service loaner fleet. People have been getting their loaner cars "sold out from under them". Once you are an owner you will appreciate it greatly!

    i know we live in an instant gratification world, but it is amusing to hear people who can't wait 2-3 months when there are a lot of us here who waited 2-3 years for their Model S!
     
  18. Rifleman

    Rifleman Now owns 2 Model S's!!!

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    As someone who currently has a differed reservation, and is waiting for the right deal on an inventory car to pop up, I think this is great news! By forcing the cars to stay in inventory for 3 months, that will intimately increase the availability of significantly discounted cars. For those of us who will be really stretching to buy a Model S, this is great news. Right now, most inventory cars are bought up before they have a change to be driven enough to qualify for a meaningful discount. With this change, the existing owners get to drive a Model S when their car is in for service, and people like me have an even better chance of bringing a Model S home. This is a Win-Win in my book :)
     
  19. Zaxxon

    Zaxxon Member

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    Definitely the right move. I mean for Nikola's sake it's been nearly nine months since the announcement of the world's best service and warranty program and the only consistent part of the loaner experience is that there's been no consistency. One would hope that with a wider window of a loaner's life (and a lower eventual sale price meaning that most loaners would reliably sell right after that 90-day mark), Tesla would be able to properly plan to replace loaners right when they will sell.
     
  20. JakeP

    JakeP S P4996 / X P6028

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    Love this policy, it is wonderful for owners who need loaners, and for buyers of inventory cars as well, as the price will be lower since they will have more miles and at least three months of depreciation. There will be a 90-day blip in difficulty to secure a loaner, but once the loaner fleet gets to be 90 days old, this will smooth out over time as the loaner fleet turns over.
     

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