Who hasn't experienced that sinking feeling caused by seeing the dreaded "Check Engine" light suddenly illuminates on the dashboard of an ICE? The brain reels as one contemplates the likely consequences. Oh, damn, now I have to make a service appointment at the dealership, take the car in, deal with the layers of inconvenience involved in leaving the car, getting on with the days errands, waiting for the diagnosis, hoping it's minor but knowing from experience it's likely a bad O2 sensor and hoping the answer is honest, not a $300 scam when the actual cause was something like a gas cap that wasn't fully tightened or some other insignificant problem. I wager most car owners have been down that road a time or two.
Today, a Sunday, around 3 in the afternoon, my Tesla's touchscreen displayed this message; "Car needs service. Contact Tesla." The car seemed fine, but I felt it would be unwise to ignore the error message. Before I called, I rebooted the main screen and the message cleared. Naturally, I called Tesla service anyway. Within about a minute I was speaking with a service rep. He asked for the last 6 digits of my VIN which I already had displayed on the screen. He looked at my car's data and told me he saw no indication of any malfunctions. I sighed with relief and proceeded to wash my car in the driveway. I found that experience far preferable to the hassles I've endured following the illumination of Check Engine lights on ICE vehicles I've owned.
So, Check Engine lights are a thing of the past in a Tesla, which technically doesn't have an engine, it has a motor with only 1 moving part. O.K., maybe that's splitting hairs and just a semantic difference. However, this event was another example of the superiority of a Tesla EV over every ICE I've driven. A short phone call on a Sunday afternoon was the extent of it. No trip to a dealer or other service facility on a weekday was required. The car was cleared and I was delighted. Sure, there could have been an issue that required a trip to a Tesla service or a visit from the Tesla Rangers. I'm sure things can go wrong with a Tesla, but so far, other than a brief errant error message which was investigated immediately, over the airwaves, with negligible disruption to my life, my Model S has performed flawlessly and I experienced only a very brief moment of concern which did not rise to the level of anxiety. I found it very reassuring.