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The total Tesla M3 experience. Happy or disappointed?

What is your take on the total Tesla M3 experience?

  • Totally happy, call me a fan

    Votes: 187 81.0%
  • Fine car, I would probably buy one again

    Votes: 29 12.6%
  • Disappointed, I was expecting so much more

    Votes: 12 5.2%
  • Stop nagging me

    Votes: 3 1.3%

  • Total voters
    231

MaSansky

Member
Aug 20, 2019
368
173
Netherlands
Tesla delivered a ****load of M3's this quarter and I am one of the lucky new owners. I am just wondering, am I the only one that is disappointed by the total experience or is this a common feeling that we try to hide behind our enthusiasm for the novelty?

Disclaimer: I live in the Netherlands where there was a huge boost in sales due to the way our tax-system works.

Personal background: self employed professional in strategy and organisational transformations. I work all over the country and used to drive 60.000 km/year for work. I have brought this down towards app. 35.000 km in order to be able to switch to EV. Have chosen a Tesla M3 because of the range, size, price/taxes and availability.

A few observations:

- the online buying experience: Tesla does not hold up to the promised delivery times, changes delivery dates and locations and does not offer any reasonable responsive way to contact them (email is not answered, no phone numbers for "customer support" or "delivery" only sales that knows nothing, chat mostly unavailable). It's a black box. Conclusion: disappointed

- the car delivery experience: Had to use public transport and a taxi to pick up the car at a remote industrial area. No Tesla pick-up at the train station, although they rescheduled the delivery to a location 2 hours from my house. At the delivery a smooth process that closely resembles the way I pick up ordered food. Not a car for which I just paid € 62.000. This is the first time ever I actually had to bring a check list to do the quality control Tesla should have done themselves. Conclusion: disappointed

- the design of the car: tastes differ. Not the best looking car in my opinion. Especially the front is reminding me of the Fiat Multipla. Not the best of references. But the rest is OK. Problem however is not the design, it is the build quality. I never before owned or driven a car that had such big gaps between the different parts of the chassis, nor so many parts that were not outlined properly. It's as if it was put together by someone that did not care. And why on earth are there so many openings in the car where water and junk can collect? If the charging port is open for charging, one of the sockets is completely open to the elements. Conclusion: disappointed

- the functionality of the car: Why does it seem as if Tesla wants to invent the wheel over and over on all aspects of a modern car? From non-functioning automatic windshield wipers to missing electronic trunk opening to an afraid-of-trucks constant emergency braking cruise control with unable-to-change-lanes auto steer (please, do not call this pre-'00s functionality an autopilot!) and total unawareness of halted traffic or traffic signs, to navigation without programmable routes or alternatives or stopovers or traffic overview or parking places near the destination or accurate speed limits or accurate road works or speed traps (everything my € 100 TomTom from 2006 does perfectly well), no way to scroll or search through your telephone contacts, no voice commands it actually understands, no way to program the pitiful scroll buttons on the steering wheel, etc. And these are observations after 1.500 km in reasonable good weather. This car was developed in Silicon Valley if I am not mistaken. Why is it then that all software startups in garage boxes can deliver beter software then Tesla? Any hopes I had that future software updates will boost the functionality of the car in what can be expected of a modern car in 2019 are gone after V10 with its focus on childish features like theater and auto summon while completely ignoring the issues with actually driving the car. Conclusion: oh man, what a disappointment!

- the drive: exceptionally good. I previously owned Saab's (Aero) and BMW's. The M3 LR AWD drives at the least as good as these other cars. The EV experience is great. Smooth drive. Fast. Silent. Lovely. Conclusion: PASS WITH HONORS

- quality and after sales service: no experience yet (after two weeks). Just hope everything keeps working as the experiences I read on this forum are not very hopeful. Conclusion: none

Conclusion for future buyers: buy it if you want an environmentally friendly alternative for petrol or gasoline cars and you want the best range out of your electricity bill. Buy it if you want a Tesla. Don't buy it if you want the best build car with the best functioning modern features for your money.
 

holmgang

Active Member
Sep 9, 2019
1,299
1,315
eu
yeah but have you seen the new games though!

but seriously, i'm still stuck at tesla's "re-invention" of the buying phase:

with porsche or bmw or etc, when you make an order they tell you when the car is in production, where it's at, when it arrives. with tesla and my order apparently im waiting to be "matched", OR have to try sniffing a VIN from website source code. (of course there was never realistic estimate of when production/birthing will happen...)

with any other marques if a specific vehicle exists online, it's parked at a dealership, waiting for a purchaser. when i see a vehicle on the tesla site, i still have no idea what it means. if i select one to buy -- and actually put deposit on -- i get told theres an error and the car doesnt exist.

i like the concept of online ordering cart. but if thats what theyre going to implement -- implement it. please take away this opaque matching nonsense
 
Last edited:
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Reactions: MaSansky
Apr 20, 2017
156
58
Arizona Territory
yeah but have you seen the new games though!

but seriously, i'm still stuck at tesla's "re-invention" of the buying phase:

with porsche or bmw or etc, when you make an order they tell you when the car is in production, where it's at, when it arrives. with tesla and my order apparently im waiting to be "matched", OR try to sniff out a VIN from sniffing a websites source code. of course there was no estimate of timeline of when that will happen.

with any other marques if a specific vehicle exists online, it's parked at a dealership, waiting for a purchaser. when i see a vehicle on the tesla site, i still have no idea what it means. if i select one to buy -- and actually put deposit on -- i get told theres an error and the car doesnt exist.

i like the concept of online ordering cart. but if thats what theyre going to implement -- implement it. please take away this opaque matching nonsense
Sounds like you would've loved Tesla a few years back. They make quite a bit more cars now. More electric ones than anyone else. Gotta roll with it !
 

pipestem

post-newbie
Nov 29, 2018
250
229
Center of the Universe
No one wants that experience. All I can say is that mine was smooth if unusual (Dec, 2018). I ordered. One week later I went by the shop, got my status, car location in transit, and delivery date. Two weeks later I picked it up in a parking lot behind a pawn shop, and it looks and drives perfect ever since. Four weeks later I needed the final closing documents so I called Tesla and got the PDF about 5 minutes later.
 
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Reactions: MaSansky

Matt L

Active Member
Jul 20, 2018
1,050
1,448
OK USA
Tesla delivered a ****load of M3's this quarter and I am one of the lucky new owners. I am just wondering, am I the only one that is disappointed by the total experience or is this a common feeling that we try to hide behind our enthusiasm for the novelty?

Disclaimer: I live in the Netherlands where there was a huge boost in sales due to the way our tax-system works.

Personal background: self employed professional in strategy and organisational transformations. I work all over the country and used to drive 60.000 km/year for work. I have brought this down towards app. 35.000 km in order to be able to switch to EV. Have chosen a Tesla M3 because of the range, size, price/taxes and availability.

A few observations:

- the online buying experience: Tesla does not hold up to the promised delivery times, changes delivery dates and locations and does not offer any reasonable responsive way to contact them (email is not answered, no phone numbers for "customer support" or "delivery" only sales that knows nothing, chat mostly unavailable). It's a black box. Conclusion: disappointed

- the car delivery experience: Had to use public transport and a taxi to pick up the car at a remote industrial area. No Tesla pick-up at the train station, although they rescheduled the delivery to a location 2 hours from my house. At the delivery a smooth process that closely resembles the way I pick up ordered food. Not a car for which I just paid € 62.000. This is the first time ever I actually had to bring a check list to do the quality control Tesla should have done themselves. Conclusion: disappointed

- the design of the car: tastes differ. Not the best looking car in my opinion. Especially the front is reminding me of the Fiat Multipla. Not the best of references. But the rest is OK. Problem however is not the design, it is the build quality. I never before owned or driven a car that had such big gaps between the different parts of the chassis, nor so many parts that were not outlined properly. It's as if it was put together by someone that did not care. And why on earth are there so many openings in the car where water and junk can collect? If the charging port is open for charging, one of the sockets is completely open to the elements. Conclusion: disappointed

- the functionality of the car: Why does it seem as if Tesla wants to invent the wheel over and over on all aspects of a modern car? From non-functioning automatic windshield wipers to missing electronic trunk opening to an afraid-of-trucks constant emergency braking cruise control with unable-to-change-lanes auto steer (please, do not call this pre-'00s functionality an autopilot!) and total unawareness of halted traffic or traffic signs, to navigation without programmable routes or alternatives or stopovers or traffic overview or parking places near the destination or accurate speed limits or accurate road works or speed traps (everything my € 100 TomTom from 2006 does perfectly well), no way to scroll or search through your telephone contacts, no voice commands it actually understands, no way to program the pitiful scroll buttons on the steering wheel, etc. And these are observations after 1.500 km in reasonable good weather. This car was developed in Silicon Valley if I am not mistaken. Why is it then that all software startups in garage boxes can deliver beter software then Tesla? Any hopes I had that future software updates will boost the functionality of the car in what can be expected of a modern car in 2019 are gone after V10 with its focus on childish features like theater and auto summon while completely ignoring the issues with actually driving the car. Conclusion: oh man, what a disappointment!

- the drive: exceptionally good. I previously owned Saab's (Aero) and BMW's. The M3 LR AWD drives at the least as good as these other cars. The EV experience is great. Smooth drive. Fast. Silent. Lovely. Conclusion: PASS WITH HONORS

- quality and after sales service: no experience yet (after two weeks). Just hope everything keeps working as the experiences I read on this forum are not very hopeful. Conclusion: none

Conclusion for future buyers: buy it if you want an environmentally friendly alternative for petrol or gasoline cars and you want the best range out of your electricity bill. Buy it if you want a Tesla. Don't buy it if you want the best build car with the best functioning modern features for your money.
You may have picked the wrong car. Sounds like this car and brand just isn’t for you.
 

xxxholic

Member
Aug 15, 2019
70
32
Washington, DC
My buying experience was quick and painless. It's the repair process that has given me reason for pause. I would buy again because I know my temperament - but for others who would not do the same kind of research and go to message boards to learn more about the nuances of owning a Tesla, I am know that I cannot make sweeping recommendations.
 
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Kamban

Member
Aug 21, 2019
164
127
South East USA
but seriously, i'm still stuck at tesla's "re-invention" of the buying phase:

with porsche or bmw or etc, when you make an order they tell you when the car is in production, where it's at, when it arrives. with tesla and my order apparently im waiting to be "matched", OR have to try sniffing a VIN from website source code. (of course there was never realistic estimate of when production/birthing will happen...)

with any other marques if a specific vehicle exists online, it's parked at a dealership, waiting for a purchaser. when i see a vehicle on the tesla site, i still have no idea what it means. if i select one to buy -- and actually put deposit on -- i get told theres an error and the car doesnt exist.

To be fair to Tesla it is still a small car company compared to established giants like BMW and Porsche. They essentially have one main production unit though they are establishing Giga factories in EU also. Till then the cars for EU have to arrive via ships and so you cannot expect the smoothness that you get one made from nearby Germany.
Even here in USA there is a bottle neck for Tesla in the West Coast where there are a lot of buyers but in South East USA I can go and easily get one from inventory within a day or order one and have a custom M3 within 2 weeks ( non permanence). My custom order, which was a base model, was available for pick up on the 8th day.
 

Kamban

Member
Aug 21, 2019
164
127
South East USA
Tesla delivered a ****load of M3's this quarter and I am one of the lucky new owners. I am just wondering, am I the only one that is disappointed by the total experience or is this a common feeling that we try to hide behind our enthusiasm for the novelty?
.......
.

You guys pay too much for your M3. Too much taxes added. The same blue AWD M3 is <50K here and that comes to 45K Euros. Which is worth it for that price. But no way would I pay 62K Euros.
Th front is different but look at other EV's in its price range. The Leaf and BMWi3 look equally dorky.
The finish is not as good as an Acura / Lexus which I have. The doors don't close with a nice thunk and there are rattles. I would have paid bit more for a better finish, especially for windows with frame.
But nothing beats the convenience of charging at night at 240V while you sleep and get out everyday with a full tank. No more petrol stations and waiting for a pump to open up in stations that sell cheaper gas.
Overall I am pleased with Tesla. Porsche is out of my price range and other EV's give much less mileage for the same or more cost of purchase than Tesla.
 
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Ronmoll

Member
Sep 18, 2019
11
13
New Jersey
Wow I thought the whole experience was awesome. Placed my order and had the car a week and a half later. Arranged financing a couple days before delivery, and was in and out of the store in less than an hour. I guess the OP hasnt had the wonderful experience of a regular car dealer where you’re in there for hours playing their bs games.
 

Rex Kramer

Member
Jan 3, 2019
79
117
Southern California
Ordering a Tesla online was the greatest car-buying experience of my life, even considering I had to wait two months to receive my vehicle.

Why? I cannot stress enough how much I absolutely loathe the "dealership experience" of buying a new car in the US. Spending hours dealing with a bunch of two-bit con artists trying to chisel me out of money, hide the actual cost of the car, tack in hidden fees, play the "four square" monthly payment hustle, and finally cause me to walk off the lot completely disgusted is not how I want to spend a Saturday afternoon.

Contrast that with choosing the options I want and GETTING the options I want, spending all of ten minutes configuring the car and actually ordering it, and knowing that anybody else who bought the same car on the same day paid the same price. I wasn't stressed and mentally exhausted from undergoing an hours-long psychological attack intended to break me down and just pay whatever price to get the car and escape.

Tesla's sales model is dangerously good, which is why you see entire state legislatures attempting to stop it.
 

holmgang

Active Member
Sep 9, 2019
1,299
1,315
eu
You guys pay too much for your M3. Too much taxes added. The same blue AWD M3 is <50K here and that comes to 45K Euros. Which is worth it for that price. But no way would I pay 62K Euros..

But it's the same for everything else, so not much choices from a consumers point of view. A 340ix starts at 75k EUR before any single options
 
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super20g

Member
Jun 28, 2018
911
600
United States
I love a lot about the car but dealing with service has been terrible. A car you like with poor service doesn't work out too well... The delivery experience wasn't great either as paperwork was modified after I signed it... YMMV.
 
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TomB985

Member
Apr 15, 2019
446
527
Isanti, MN
Overall, I would call my Model 3 experience outstanding.

Context matters, and we purchase cars from the only upstart automaker to achieve serial production in the last hundred years. And they did this in the most restrictive regulatory climate in history, as different layers of government pile on rules year after year. In the most impressive part is how reliable of a machine they make, especially since beer only six years away from the production of their first mass-produced car.

Tesla as a corporation is running at breakneck speed for survival right now. Their business model requires this, as the ability to rapidly scale production is critical given the investment they made in market expansion. All the while, continually refining software and adding features to existing cars in a way that's never been done in history. They don't have the advantage of being in the business for a century, so I think they're doing remarkably well given the conditions.

What matters to me is the car and how it performs its intended function, to which my Model 3 has exceeded all my expectations. So far it's been dead reliable, efficient, and the best software user interface of any vehicle I've seen. Many of the features people gripe about are in their infancy, and years ahead of all their competitors. A guy like me enjoys trying new things, so I don't mind dealing with a few glitches to enjoy the latest technology available.

I'm different from most in this group, I bought my car exclusively because of the autopilot function. A progressive autoimmune disorder has taken much of the use of my hands, so driving a regular vehicle gets quite painful after about 15 minutes. So Tesla and their autopilot has literally been life-altering for me. So yes, you could call me a happy owner.
 

Kamban

Member
Aug 21, 2019
164
127
South East USA
- the functionality of the car: Why does it seem as if Tesla wants to invent the wheel over and over on all aspects of a modern car? From non-functioning automatic windshield wipers to missing electronic trunk opening to an afraid-of-trucks constant emergency braking cruise control with unable-to-change-lanes auto steer (please, do not call this pre-'00s functionality an autopilot!) and total unawareness of halted traffic or traffic signs, to navigation without programmable routes or alternatives or stopovers or traffic overview or parking places near the destination or accurate speed limits or accurate road works or speed traps (everything my € 100 TomTom from 2006 does perfectly well), no way to scroll or search through your telephone contacts, no voice commands it actually understands, no way to program the pitiful scroll buttons on the steering wheel, etc. And these are observations after 1.500 km in reasonable good weather. This car was developed in Silicon Valley if I am not mistaken. Why is it then that all software startups in garage boxes can deliver beter software then Tesla? Any hopes I had that future software updates will boost the functionality of the car in what can be expected of a modern car in 2019 are gone after V10 with its focus on childish features like theater and auto summon while completely ignoring the issues with actually driving the car. Conclusion: oh man, what a disappointment!

I have the opposite experience of you here in the states. I have 6-7 useless Tom Toms and Garmins in an old heap in a box, even many with lifetime maps. many suction cups fail in the hot weather. Couple of those tiny speakers failed. Some has usb ports come loose. And they needed long cords to connect to a cigarette lighter. My 2017 Acura MDX had a navigation system that was such a pain to use that I used it just a couple times. The rest of the time I used my Google maps in my phone. But they were small screens even with Galaxy 8+ and needed to be balanced in a cup holder and I had to look down intermittently. The Acura dealer wanted $100 after 2 years for a CD with updated maps. What were they dreaming.

The Tesla has a big screen with a nice Google map and all I had to do was to press the right scroll wheel and say Navigate to ... and it would just do it. Just Google working at its best. I just love that simplicity.

The V10 update is awesome. With wi-fi I can get some many extras. I can connect to hotspot from my phone when I am not on wi-fi. And I will gladly pay $100 per year for LTE just for the car. Much cheaper that even an oil change at a BMW.

Simply the best functionality of a car I have seen. And I own a couple of high end Japanese cars.
 
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holmgang

Active Member
Sep 9, 2019
1,299
1,315
eu
That is a lot of money for a 3 series car, even though it is top of that line.
I don't know what else applies in Netherlands. In my country we get slapped another tax during purchase of 15% on CO2 of that motor, and then a perpetual monthly tax of about 200 USD based on its horsepower rating. good times
 

Kamban

Member
Aug 21, 2019
164
127
South East USA
I don't know what else applies in Netherlands. In my country we get slapped another tax during purchase of 15% on CO2 of that motor, and then a perpetual monthly tax of about 200 USD based on its horsepower rating. good times

But in return Netherlands is a such a beautiful country. I just love Amsterdam, one of my favorite cities. My daughter has fallen in love with it and even wants to go to college there.
 
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OCR1

Active Member
Jan 28, 2018
3,760
4,111
Southern California
I think the OP’s observations about the sales and delivery experience are fair and consistent with what many others have experienced. My only comment is that I think it’s important to consider how much of your time is spent buying and taking delivery of the car, and how much of your time is spent owning and operating the car. Those things need to be weighted differently since the buying and delivery experience is a few hours of your life but you are going to spend thousands of hours driving the car.
 

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