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Tesla Upper Control Arm CRACKED

It all took place Yesterday when My Wife were driving to visit one of her Colleague. While turning into a left turn at a relatively low speed she heard a Loud BANG. She did not think of much but immediately she notice that her brake were completely gone and the dash had malfunction warning all over the place. she had to struggle to pull the car to safety but was hitting many of the safety bump on the ground.

Within minutes the campus police pull up and ask her what happen. She got out of the car notice the our 2013 Model S P85 was Sitting on the ground with one of the wheel completely bend. It looks like as if the Axle had gave away.

Luckily we call AAA and the flat bed arrive within 15 Minutes. Officer were shock to see an TESLA MODEL S completely Disable looking like the wheel is going to fall out.

The car were TOWED to Buena Park CA Service Center. Before towing the car my wife called and spoke to the concierge and confirm that there will be a loaner or rental available for her. Upon arrival the car were quickly moved into the garage but she was later inform that they had NO CAR available for her to take. This was not only an inconvenience but had we knew that they weren't able to provide us any type of transportation beside uber we would have gone to a different service center. what really throw thing off was that the Service Adviser VINCE simply told my wife to call around to the nearest Enterprise and to find a car on her own. This was ridiculous.

Long story short. After having the car for 24 hour the service adviser VINCE inform us that the damage were not cover under the extended warranty. He told us that the damage were cause by us having the car to hit an object. I was not thrill with this finding as the car was never hit nor has it been in any sort of accident. It seem to us that one suspension component simply gave away while my wife was making a turn. I immediately google "TESLA SUSPENSION FAILURE" and found that there were many report on suspension problem once the car hits 70,000 + Miles. I then ask the service adviser Vince "What is the part that actually gave away on us?" Not only he sounded unprofessional, he also seem completely out of loop and has no idea what component an Model S Has. All he trying to claim that the technician indicate it was us that damage the part. Does he not know how Sever
IMG_6373.JPG
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of impact it has to be to break an upper control arm?!?!

So I requested to go in to the shop to take a look at it. and finally was able to get some picture taken. To My Surprise the Tesla Technician did not even remove my wheel and simply lift the car up on a jack and continue to question me what we hit. As I have continuously explain to them the suspension gave away without warning and no object was hit at all before it gave away. The only object that were hit were those white safety bump on the ground after the car were SLAMMED on the ground. There weren't any damage on the fender well, finder lining what so ever. It was a complete shock, looking at the broken part it look as if the Upper Control arm just Crack in the middle. I simply can not get my head around that how can they claim that I hit and object that cause the UPPER CONTROL ARM hidden behind wheel to completely crack apart

To me it is obvious that this is not an wear and tear. It is an manufacturer Part Defect. and After reading on many form it seem that the suspension was a big problem on the early production TESLA MODEL S. I have been in Mercedes for Years and my previous S Class were at 125,000 Miles. I have not seen anything like this. Currently they are still refusing to cover the repair. Luckily enough my wife was driving locally not on the Freeway. I can't imagine what a catastrophic accident it will be if she were travel at a high speed.
 

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What's the white scraping mark on the second picture? How did the scratch get there?

If Tesla doesn't pay, does your car insurance cover it?

That white scratch were there due to that the car were completely SLAM after the control are gave away. So it was hitting that Safety bump on the ground. The Safety bump in that college campus were at least 5 inches in height
 
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ecarfan

Well-Known Member
Moderator
That white scratch were there due to that the car were completely SLAM after the control are gave away. So it was hitting that Safety bump on the ground. The Safety bump in that college campus were at least 5 inches in height
Sorry to hear about your problem. I am unclear on what a "safety bump" is and why they are so high. Can you explain? Do you mean a "speed bump? Like in these photos? speed bump - Google Search
 

JohnSnowNW

Active Member
Feb 13, 2015
2,686
3,027
Minnesota
That white scratch were there due to that the car were completely SLAM after the control are gave away. So it was hitting that Safety bump on the ground. The Safety bump in that college campus were at least 5 inches in height

That seems more like supposition...no offense. The picture you posted of safety bumps is considerably less than 5" in height...

I'd also add that I would think a defect in the part would probably show up before 70k+ miles...but I'm not an expert...though the SC technician seems to agree.

To add, any suspension related issues you come across on Google should be taken with a grain of salt...due to a rather delusional Australian that has muddied the waters.
 
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Electricfan

Active Member
Aug 24, 2013
1,253
378
Houston
Try contacting your regional service manager. With no damage anywhere but the control arm, I don't see how they can stick to the "you hit something" story. But its any car service center's first response - your fault - not covered - sorry. You have to fight through it. Sometimes they refuse to honor the warranty. Its life in capitalism, not much you can do. If you're rich you hire a lawyer and fight. If not, you have to fight like crazy to get them to do the right thing. Good luck.
 

scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,374
Canada
Are those low profile 21" tires on your P85?

If you hit a smooth round object dead on center with the tire, driving over it.. There might not be any visible result of the object strike - but it could have bottomed out the rubber and made wheel contact, transmitting a pretty sharp blow up through to the suspension parts. I'm trying to envision (recall from memory) where shock mount point is in relation to that broken control arm. Maybe the arm took the impact before the shock could react (absorb) it. This might happen for a high frequency high amplitude hit, like hitting a speed bubble even at moderate speed ~30 mph.

Shocking as it sounds, the tech is probably onto something... a hit, not fatigue, did this.

Check that wheel for tire damage and rim for any bends or bulges. Unmount the tire look inside.

HOWEVER there are agencies and engineering firms that can help do you metallurgic analysis and examine the fracture and give you a professional report on whether this was a fatigue failure or impact induced failure.

Either failure is not good. Fatigue points to engineering / design error, or out of tolerance part... Impact failure tells us "not to hit things" but road hazards pop up unwelcome everywhere...
 

ecarfan

Well-Known Member
Moderator
The picture you posted of safety bumps is considerably less than 5" in height...
The OP did not post any pictures of "safety bumps".

I posted a link to photos of "speed bumps" asking if that is what the OP meant by "safety bumps", which is a term I am not familiar with.

And then @scottm referred to a "speed bubble", another term I am not familiar with.
 

FlatSix911

Porsche 918 Hybrid
Jun 15, 2015
7,629
8,032
Silicon Valley
That white scratch were there due to that the car were completely SLAM after the control are gave away.
So it was hitting that Safety bump on the ground. The Safety bump in that college campus were at least 5 inches in height

Sorry to hear about your problem.
I am unclear on what a "safety bump" is and why they are so high. Can you explain? Do you mean a "speed bump?
Like in these photos? speed bump - Google Search

The OP did not post any pictures of "safety bumps".
I posted a link to photos of "speed bumps" asking if that is what the OP meant by "safety bumps", which is a term I am not familiar with.
And then @scottm referred to a "speed bubble", another term I am not familiar with.

Alex, the photo you posted are not safety bumps ... those are bots dots Botts' dots - Wikipedia
Did your wife actually hit a speed bump on campus which can cause damage to lowered cars?

5f9d9a7f-240d-4984-afbb-b60717db27a5-jpg.241996
 
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Alex, the photo you posted are not safety bumps ... those are bots dots Botts' dots - Wikipedia
Did your wife actually hit a speed bump on campus which can cause damage to lowered cars?

the Upper control arm FAILED before she hit the DOTS. Once the control arm gave away the car were Slammed to the ground and the brake were malfunction . She had to literally let the regenerating brake to roll the car to a stop. so by the time she was completely stop her car were on top of the DOTS.

5f9d9a7f-240d-4984-afbb-b60717db27a5-jpg.241996
 
From that impact mark, it sure looks to me like that arm hit something and not the other way around. An engineer could tell you, or at least provide an opinion, based on a balance of probabilities, which is all that's required in civil court.

I seriously doubt that there would be any impact marking on the control arm it self. It is well hidden behind the wheels. BTW I know I am new and this was my first post. I am just a TESLA LOVER who are trying to get some input on the issue I encounter. My wife is the daily driver and she Absolutely love the car. we have been in this car since 2013 and has put well over 75,000 miles in it. I continued to google and trying to find some more report on it many suspension defect do not occur after 70,000 mark.
 

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