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What to look for in a used Roadster

Discussion in 'Roadster' started by jordanthompson, Apr 27, 2011.

  1. jordanthompson

    jordanthompson 2010 2.0 Sport, VIN 0683

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    I have been following the Tesla phenomenon for some time, but only on the fringes. I was visiting family in San Jose over the weekend and dropped by the dealer for a test ride. Well that was a huge mistake: what used to be a nice-to-have has now become a need-to-have.:rolleyes:

    I have started poking around at various sites looking for a used roadster. I don't think I need the sport package or the roof or the GPS, but I guess I could be convinced otherwise.

    My question really is what problems should I be looking for? I want to get one that is relatively new (2011/2010) so that it is still under warranty, but I am assuming that whatever I find is not going to be local, so I will need to ask many questions and ask for many pictures.
    In a similar vein, what kind of issues are people having with them (mechanical/electrical, not distance or use.) The salesman told me the need a visit to the dealer once per year for fluid replacement, but what is the real cost of ownership (again not considering that it is cheaper to fill up watts than oil)?

    I was pleased to see that there is a new dealer just south of Fort Lauderdale, but unfortunately I am nearly three hours north of it.

    If there is a better place to ask this or if it has already been answered, please let me know.

    Thanks for your responses,
    Jordan
     
  2. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Pretty much the only thing you'll wear out is the tires, so be sure to check those - especially the rears.

    IMHO the Sport isn't worth it. It's a modest additional boost, and the sticky tires that are needed for that extra acceleration wear out even faster.
     
  3. jordanthompson

    jordanthompson 2010 2.0 Sport, VIN 0683

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    Thanks for the input Doug... Are they really that free of maintenance?!? What about brakes, etc?

    Is there somewhere to compare the major differences between the 2009, 2010, and 2011 models?
     
  4. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    You don't use the friction brakes much; usually the regenerative braking does most of the work. So your "real" brakes tend to last forever.

    Annual maintenance is mainly checking the battery system coolant, running a quick test on the battery pack (bleed test), and updating the firmware. Sometimes they also make small mods to the car for improved performance or reliability.

    Rather than model year you want to look at the "version" (1.5, 2.0, 2.5). Since you're looking for 2010/2011 you're going to get a 2.0 or 2.5; either way it's good.
     
  5. NigelM

    NigelM Recovering Member

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    One that new is not likely to be so highly discounted, is it? I just bought mine but I sort of picked up that the Tesla store in Dania Beach had a showroom model that the were going to sell. It's worth checking out, the guy who did a great job taking care of us is called Will and you can get hold of him through the store.

    Are you east or west coast FL?
     
  6. jordanthompson

    jordanthompson 2010 2.0 Sport, VIN 0683

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    Thanks for the tip! I'll call for Will tomorrow morning :) I am on the East Coast (Satellite Beach)
     
  7. jordanthompson

    jordanthompson 2010 2.0 Sport, VIN 0683

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    Thats very interesting... My brother-in-law has a Ferrari (he's gonna eat his heart out when he finds out it doesn't cost $3,000/month to own a quick car :)
     
  8. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    Look at rebates before buying used.
     
  9. pgwoosley

    pgwoosley Member

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    If the car is located near a Tesla store and you are not located near a store, consider having it serviced before it is shipped to you. Teslas have to be serviced yearly to keep the warranty in effect.
     
  10. jordanthompson

    jordanthompson 2010 2.0 Sport, VIN 0683

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    That brings up another question: what does it cost for a normal service?
     
  11. jordanthompson

    jordanthompson 2010 2.0 Sport, VIN 0683

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    What rebates are you referring to?
    I was told that the Hybrid credit was phased out recently, but that there is an "Alternative Motor Vehicle Tax Credit" which looks like it may only apply to gasoline-only hybrids.
     
  12. jordanthompson

    jordanthompson 2010 2.0 Sport, VIN 0683

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    Alex, from the San Jose dealer just called me (he is the salesman who worked with me there.) He said they watch this forum and saw that I may be interested in a car they have at the Dania Beach facility. He told me that he would have Will call me tonight(!) I just got off the phone with Will who is arranging to meet me and my wife so she can have a chance to drive one!! Not only am I impressed with the vehicle, but the people who work for Tesla seem incredibly dedicated!
     
  13. pgwoosley

    pgwoosley Member

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    In December it was about $600 including wiper blade and key fob batteries.
     
  14. bolosky

    bolosky Member

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    If I were buying used, the main thing I'd check is how the battery's doing. To do that, you'd see how many ideal miles it's getting on a full range mode or standard mode charge. Brand new batteries get about 244 range mode and in the low 190's standard mode. After 24K miles (and one time kind of abusing the battery on the track), mine was more like low 170s standard and 210-215 range. It seems like the new battery capacity drops off pretty quickly, and then levels out for a long time, so don't expect to see numbers like new.

    In terms of operating costs, I have three main ones:
    1) Tires. It eats a set of rear tires every 12K miles, and the fronts about half that often. Figure average $500-$600/12K miles.
    2) Service. That's about the same cost as the tires, $550-$600/12K. I'm not sure why it's so expensive, except that everything at Tesla is expensive.
    3) Car washes. I get it washed/detailed at the gym, which runs me ~$35/wash (they do a really nice job, it's worth it). I average between 1 and 2/month, so ~$500/12K (yes, nearly as much as service and tires).

    Oh, yeah, there's also electricity. I probably use a little more than 300 Wh/mile once you include losses during charging. My rate is $.09/kWh, so that's ~$350/12K. You read that right: I spend more on car washes than "fuel."

    If you're like me, you'll love the car. I've had it for coming up on two years, and I still look forward to getting into it every time.
     
  15. TEG

    TEG TMC Moderator

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  16. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    Very true. Car is still fun to get into every single day. If you have the AD07s, I've heard they last around 5-7,000 miles and the fronts last around 12,000 miles.
     
  17. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Depends on how much "fun" you have with it. My rear AD07's were completely gone at 4800 miles.
     
  18. Jaff

    Jaff Active Member

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    What to look for in a used Roadster?


    How about a recently divorced fitness instructor with a 7 figure income who will let you drive?
     
  19. NigelM

    NigelM Recovering Member

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    I think Zack found one...apparently she also owns horses!
     
  20. Jaff

    Jaff Active Member

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    Lmao! :biggrin:

     

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