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Why I sold my 1-month old Tesla Model S.

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avesraggiana

Member
Jan 25, 2017
448
307
Chula Vista CA
It’s threads like these that make me hesitant to drop $80k on a car. I just can’t deal with the hassles of poor fit, finish at that price level.

Don’t get me wrong— I think the company is a game changer and want them to do exceedingly well. Just wish the manufacturing issues were sorted.

Crossing my fingers for Model 3 production while I hang onto my ‘01 BMW wagon


If you read a thread like this on a BMW forum, you’ll hesitate about buying a BMW, I’m sure. Same thing if you read this type of thread on a Porsche forum, or an Audi forum or a Lexus forum.

I try to take a wide view. Stories like this are very much in the minority, and the fact that the experiences they relate are so negative is what make threads like this remarkable.

The vast majority of Tesla owners have been and remain happy with their purchase.
 

Flyguy

Member
Aug 17, 2017
296
169
94062
If you read a thread like this on a BMW forum, you’ll hesitate about buying a BMW, I’m sure. Same thing if you read this type of thread on a Porsche forum, or an Audi forum or a Lexus forum.

I try to take a wide view. Stories like this are very much in the minority, and the fact that the experiences they relate are so negative is what make threads like this remarkable.

The vast majority of Tesla owners have been and remain happy with their purchase.
I agree. And, just to clarify, when I said I wanted to Return my Model S, If I had that option I would have gladly take my chances with a different model S.
 

GameMaker

Member
Oct 1, 2017
11
17
Fremont, CA
Wow. What a thread. I've read every single post, because I can actually understand what the OP is saying. I'm doing the same calculation right now, and to be free of the fear I've made a huge mistake - absolutely that's worth 10-15% of the car's value. Go look up Sunk Cost Fallacy. If for him, his disappointment had ruined his experience to the point where it wasn't worth it, then it was a GREAT decision to sell. Happiness has no price tag, and for him, NOT having the car brings more happiness than HAVING the car.

There are real, systemic problems. In manufacturing. In delivery. In the SCs. In QC.

I don't want to thread-jack, so all I'll say is I also had a crappy experience. My OA ignored and then lied to me. There was JUNK in the car from a test driver when I took delivery (inventory vehicle). Multiple SC trips. No callbacks. Etc.

I can totally understand the OP's position. All I want at this point is to love my car. Given that every few weeks I have to wonder "Ok, what the hell happened now?", it's hard to do that.

Experiences like ours may be in the minority, but there is a PHENOMENAL amount of Kool Aid drinking going on as well. The smart ones are putting down the cup, enjoying their car, but also seeing "Huh. Yeah, I guess I could see there are problems."

I see it like this. I could go spend, like $6K on a great gaming computer. Or I could go buy the $18K computer made by this one company that has literally a 3D holographic display. Holy hell. It's the future! Then I get it, and it crashes. And the keys stick. And, and, and. So that's what a Tesla is. It's the only game in town right now, and if the OP decided it wasn't for him...whatever. Enjoy your holographic car, with his and my congratulations. I don't understand why people are getting defensive. He didn't attack anyone or even disparage the company. He repeatedly praised it and wished them well.

So why are we here? Because experiences like ours are FRUSTRATING, and we need to vent, and hear that other people have them too, and we're not nuts.

So thank you, Stan. Good on ya. You've done a great job sharing your info, being pretty stand-up throughout this thread, and it's helped me to realize these are real problems, and getting out is a legit way to go. I'm also hearing from many people on the post, you gotta be pretty darned firm with these guys to make them fix what they say they're going to fix, and make sure they make it right. I'm super glad you're happy with your decision.
 

claudelaval

Member
Mar 27, 2016
121
25
Laval
Lemon laws are pretty specific -- as in they need to be safety related.

• The manufacturer or its agents have made two or more attempts to repair a warranty problem that results in a condition that is likely to cause death or serious bodily injury if the vehicle is driven; • The manufacturer or its agents have made four or more attempts to repair the same warranty problem; or • The vehicle has been out of service for more than 30 days (not necessarily all at the same time) while being repaired for any number of warranty problems; or • The problems are covered by the warranty, substantially reduce the vehicle’s use, value, or safety to the consumer and are not caused by abuse of the vehicle; • If required by the warranty materials or by the owner’s manual, the consumer has to directly notify the manufacturer about the problem(s), preferably in writing. The notice must be sent to the address shown in the warranty or owner’s manual (for bullets 1 and 2).

All the issues I faced were really just quality control related, and my dis-satisfaction with their repair process.

I see people throwing around the term 'lemon law' all the time when they don't like a product. Factually, it is not very easy to lemon law a car, and may and can take up to a year for the process to finalize.

I decided to just cut my looses. Monetary loss is of no concern to me.
If monetary loss is of no concern why he didn't buy the P100D?
 

stan23

Member
Aug 10, 2017
352
393
Santa Clara, CA
Wow. What a thread. I've read every single post, because I can actually understand what the OP is saying. I'm doing the same calculation right now, and to be free of the fear I've made a huge mistake - absolutely that's worth 10-15% of the car's value. Go look up Sunk Cost Fallacy. If for him, his disappointment had ruined his experience to the point where it wasn't worth it, then it was a GREAT decision to sell. Happiness has no price tag, and for him, NOT having the car brings more happiness than HAVING the car.

There are real, systemic problems. In manufacturing. In delivery. In the SCs. In QC.

I don't want to thread-jack, so all I'll say is I also had a crappy experience. My OA ignored and then lied to me. There was JUNK in the car from a test driver when I took delivery (inventory vehicle). Multiple SC trips. No callbacks. Etc.

I can totally understand the OP's position. All I want at this point is to love my car. Given that every few weeks I have to wonder "Ok, what the hell happened now?", it's hard to do that.

Experiences like ours may be in the minority, but there is a PHENOMENAL amount of Kool Aid drinking going on as well. The smart ones are putting down the cup, enjoying their car, but also seeing "Huh. Yeah, I guess I could see there are problems."

I see it like this. I could go spend, like $6K on a great gaming computer. Or I could go buy the $18K computer made by this one company that has literally a 3D holographic display. Holy hell. It's the future! Then I get it, and it crashes. And the keys stick. And, and, and. So that's what a Tesla is. It's the only game in town right now, and if the OP decided it wasn't for him...whatever. Enjoy your holographic car, with his and my congratulations. I don't understand why people are getting defensive. He didn't attack anyone or even disparage the company. He repeatedly praised it and wished them well.

So why are we here? Because experiences like ours are FRUSTRATING, and we need to vent, and hear that other people have them too, and we're not nuts.

So thank you, Stan. Good on ya. You've done a great job sharing your info, being pretty stand-up throughout this thread, and it's helped me to realize these are real problems, and getting out is a legit way to go. I'm also hearing from many people on the post, you gotta be pretty darned firm with these guys to make them fix what they say they're going to fix, and make sure they make it right. I'm super glad you're happy with your decision.

Thank you for your post! If I wrote as eloquently as you, i'm sure some people would not be so defensive right off the bat. What people don't understand, is I really wish the car worked for me. There is nothing comparable (electric) wise. But I know when to call it quits.

Every owner is going to have a different experience. The ones that have drank the kool aid--so to speak, and I really don't like that term, as i'd rather call it passionate owners will never be swayed by my words, nor the words of anyone who's had an issue. Reminds me of one of my colleagues. Very intelligent guy, well educated. He purchased his Model S a year or so before I bought mine. When I bought mine, he looked me dead in the eye and with no emotion said, "how does it feel to drive the best car ever made?"

From that point on, I realize using him as my outlet on issues I had with my car was fruitless. I can see that he is understanding my words, but not really digesting them. He would just walk away and mumble under his breath that he never had any issues. I obviously respect him as a fellow colleague, but he'll never see my point of view.
 
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stan23

Member
Aug 10, 2017
352
393
Santa Clara, CA
If monetary loss is of no concern why he didn't buy the P100D?

You're not the first to have posted what you think is a snide remark, and a jab at my 'monetary' comment. I'll bite.

I'd rather sell the car, at a loss, than lose my sanity and time over my disappointing ownership experience. That's what my comment was about. My sanity and time lost was worth more than the money lost. I'm not made of gold, and of course I'd rather not lose money. For ME, my exit strategy made sense. I didn't want to continue my ownership experience, and if all it took to end it was losing some money, i'm at peace with it. I've had no regrets since then. Remember this, I was going back to the dealer twice a week for repairs not made, and new damages.

Will I ever buy another Tesla? Maybe, maybe not. The experience is too fresh in my mind at the moment. Do I think they have a great product that is not comparable to anything on the market, YES. At the very least the new roadster has me intrigued--and that's a good thing.

Now after I clarified this; ask yourself. What does me choosing my model over a P100D has anything to do with anything?
 

Mediocrates

Member
Apr 16, 2017
363
348
San Diego, CA
Even with the lemon law, you don't get a brand new car, just an equivalent used one. And 'equivalent' doesn't include emotional loss. So the $15K would still have been lost.

That's not true in California, which is the (listed) state of residence of both you and stan23 (and me).

Tesla no longer does one-for-one car rebuilds. At one point they did, but that became a legal problem. Now they only refund purchase price.

If the Lemon Law process goes to arbitration and you win, compensation for the purchase price of the vehicle may be reduced by some fraction based on usage. In California, the "lifetime" of a vehicle is considered 120,000 miles, so the reduction would be based the amount of miles driven prior to the first warranty service incident.

Here's a good source for a detailed summary:

http://www.bbb.org/us/Storage/16/Documents/BBBAutoLine/CA-LLsummary.pdf
 

NewTMSMan

Active Member
Aug 21, 2017
1,089
1,392
USA
Can completely empathize with the OP. I am going through a similar thought process on the two Teslas I bought (X 100D and S P100D). Both have been terribly unreliable and my ownership experience has not been great. Approaching NJ Lemon Law for my Model X shortly and will initiate that once I hit 20 days (currently at 17 and counting as it is still in service) and same for my Model S (only at 14 days though). My downside will be near $50k, so will likely not just eat my losses like OP if I can avoid it.

I have never, for any car I have owned, even looked up the NJ Lemon Law and now with 2 Teslas planning to initiate tells me a little about quality.

Can completely understand cutting your losses and moving on. Good luck with you replacement choice.
 

Sanjayjpatel

Member
Aug 27, 2016
6
5
Boston
I have to agree with Stan. There are serious service issues. I think its good to have a dialog and engage on how it can be addressed, particularly as the number of Tesla’s is going to rise quickly and significantly.

I have a 1 year old X and it was fine for the first year but then a door sensor (s) failed, when they returned it to me, the doors didn’t open at all, just as we were about to leave for a long trip. Every time I get it back from service there is some other minor thing that no longer works, I don’t bother reporting the minor items.

I do think their post service QA needs work - and right now I don’t think its because they don’t have time. I went to the service center and they were not that busy around the time I had my service. Imagine what the service experience will be like once there are more cars.

On the other hand, this is the only daily driver car I have ever missed when I’m away...and I’ve owned lots of different cars. There aren’t any other great options so not sure what one would replace a Tesla with...Stan?
 

Ohc Breaks

New Member
Nov 14, 2017
2
0
Norfolk, UK
I guess I'm what you would consider a petrol head. I like driving all kinds of cars. I didn't feel that after owning a tesla, nothing else compared.

I believe I've covered why I didn't persevere in the original post and subsequent posts. Things that I'm reminded of that I didn't cover in the first post. I had reach a point of frustration, where it was best for me to move on. Your point of frustration may be much higher than mine--which is great. Couple that with a loving wife that hears me grumbing about yet another service visit, and agreed with me to just sell the car.
Okay, Stan. We are all different, thankfully. All the best ;-)
 

tmoz

S85D, Prius PiP
Aug 16, 2015
867
474
Gilbert, Arizona
You're not the first to have posted what you think is a snide remark, and a jab at my 'monetary' comment. I'll bite.

...
Now after I clarified this; ask yourself. What does me choosing my model over a P100D has anything to do with anything?
Hi Stan,
I am now curious as to why you didn't pick the P100D. I agree it has nothing to do with the issues you had nor the decision to be done with it. For me, I did not pick the P version because I thought that I'd be too tempted to accelerate and go faster than I should, the premium cost was a bit steep for features I'd try not to use that often (yes cost figured in for me to a degree), and that I didn't want to go in the direction of a muscle car. It is hard enough for me to "drive normally" with the S 85D and keep myself out of trouble.

So not trying to make a dig or anything negative, just got curious from that other post.
 

tmoz

S85D, Prius PiP
Aug 16, 2015
867
474
Gilbert, Arizona
I have to agree with Stan. There are serious service issues. I think its good to have a dialog and engage on how it can be addressed, particularly as the number of Tesla’s is going to rise quickly and significantly.

I have a 1 year old X and it was fine for the first year but then a door sensor (s) failed, when they returned it to me, the doors didn’t open at all, just as we were about to leave for a long trip. Every time I get it back from service there is some other minor thing that no longer works, I don’t bother reporting the minor items.

I do think their post service QA needs work - and right now I don’t think its because they don’t have time. I went to the service center and they were not that busy around the time I had my service. Imagine what the service experience will be like once there are more cars.

On the other hand, this is the only daily driver car I have ever missed when I’m away...and I’ve owned lots of different cars. There aren’t any other great options so not sure what one would replace a Tesla with...Stan?
Perhaps try a different service center if one is near? I found that the repairs they did on my car relied upon the technician's ingenuity to trouble shoot a problem and figure it out.

I've had a short list of minor problems like the instrument cluster going out, one door handle not responding, upper rear horizontal lights not coming on when braking, etc. But the car has great wheel alignment and will keep a straight profile for quite a long time. Any pulling would drive me crazy, so I'm thankful I don't have that issue.

It seems like the service centers can fix some initial build issues, but there are some issues that they are not well equipped to handle - or at least not every service center. I did hear that they share stories so that the trouble shooting they have to do is lessened, but how well that tribal knowledge gets shared and taken up across service centers may not be the same everywhere.
 
Mar 25, 2013
622
557
Key West, FL
Tesla all-electric drivetrain: best in the world.
Tesla everything else (hardware, software, sales experience, delivery experience, repair, wait time,....) : hit and miss = unacceptable.
Like several have pointed out, the less-accepting buyers of Model 3 will determine if Tesla survives. It's very possible that many of those people only have this one car, the Model 3, in the household. If the car takes forever to get repaired, or has weird hiccups, and quality issues that we now "forgive" on the S and X, it won't be pretty.
 
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tmoz

S85D, Prius PiP
Aug 16, 2015
867
474
Gilbert, Arizona
Tesla all-electric drivetrain: best in the world.
Tesla everything else (hardware, software, sales experience, delivery experience, repair, wait time,....) : hit and miss = unacceptable.
Like several have pointed out, the less-accepting buyers of Model 3 will determine if Tesla survives. It's very possible that many of those people only have this one car, the Model 3, in the household. If the car takes forever to get repaired, or has weird hiccups, and quality issues that we now "forgive" on the S and X, it won't be pretty.
Good point - I can't see anyone buying a model 3 and not having a second car. But for that matter, I can't see anyone having only one car that is not really really reliable and trouble free.
 

stan23

Member
Aug 10, 2017
352
393
Santa Clara, CA
Hi Stan,
I am now curious as to why you didn't pick the P100D. I agree it has nothing to do with the issues you had nor the decision to be done with it. For me, I did not pick the P version because I thought that I'd be too tempted to accelerate and go faster than I should, the premium cost was a bit steep for features I'd try not to use that often (yes cost figured in for me to a degree), and that I didn't want to go in the direction of a muscle car. It is hard enough for me to "drive normally" with the S 85D and keep myself out of trouble.

So not trying to make a dig or anything negative, just got curious from that other post.

I covered it earlier in the thread.

Why I sold my 1-month old Tesla Model S.
 
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Reactions: tmoz

stan23

Member
Aug 10, 2017
352
393
Santa Clara, CA
Stan it might have been easier to keep the car. I am worried your post about selling the car might suck you into this ongoing thread for the next year or two.

I think you may be right my fellow Freddie Spencer fan.

I appreciate healthy discussion - I have not yet even thought about my old Telsa until I posted this thread. I honesty thought someone from Tesla may read it, and maybe see that there is obvious improvement that can be done. If anything I know Tesla is great at change. All they really need is someone to look over the car with a checklist before it leaves the factory. Also, drive it and make sure the steering wheel is straight and the car tracks straight.

I've already asked this thread be closed earlier on, and even emailed an admin regarding closure. No response.

You are not Stan of Frankenlotus fame by any chance?

Sorry, I am not, and I have never owned a Lotus. Although I would not mind having an Exige cup as a TD toy.
 

mkspeedr

Member
Jun 14, 2015
760
810
Santa Clara, CA
I think you may be right my fellow Freddie Spencer fan.

I appreciate healthy discussion - I have not yet even thought about my old Telsa until I posted this thread. I honesty thought someone from Tesla may read it, and maybe see that there is obvious improvement that can be done. If anything I know Tesla is great at change. All they really need is someone to look over the car with a checklist before it leaves the factory. Also, drive it and make sure the steering wheel is straight and the car tracks straight.

I've already asked this thread be closed earlier on, and even emailed an admin regarding closure. No response.



Sorry, I am not, and I have never owned a Lotus. Although I would not mind having an Exige cup as a TD toy.

Next season picture will be replaced with a Kevin Schwantz and a V4 next year. Luckily this thread will still be active so you can check out my updated picture. I will also give you my update on my P100D model X. Hopefully that is built like my current model S.
 

jjh1234

Member
Jul 8, 2017
587
341
Pittsburgh, PA
I think you may be right my fellow Freddie Spencer fan.

I appreciate healthy discussion - I have not yet even thought about my old Telsa until I posted this thread. I honesty thought someone from Tesla may read it, and maybe see that there is obvious improvement that can be done. If anything I know Tesla is great at change. All they really need is someone to look over the car with a checklist before it leaves the factory. Also, drive it and make sure the steering wheel is straight and the car tracks straight.

I've already asked this thread be closed earlier on, and even emailed an admin regarding closure. No response.



Sorry, I am not, and I have never owned a Lotus. Although I would not mind having an Exige cup as a TD toy.

Try clicking on REPORT and explain and ask for closure.
 
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