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An Aftermarket Approach to TM's Opportunity Console

An Aftermarket Approach to TM's Opportunity Console

Those with an interest in the development of a viable aftermarket center console option can follow the latest progress of the Center Console Insert (CCI) at: Soflauthor’s Center Console Insert at TMC in the “Tesla Parts for Sale” forum. I posted a new progress report with some rendering of the fabrication design earlier today.

http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/9872-Soflauthor-s-center-c...

The mods at TMC set up a special thread for the CCI, so with the exception of pointers like this one. That’s where I’m posting progress reports and fielding questions/comments.

I hope you stop by to see (and if you're so inclined, comment on) the latest progress.

Robert22 | 15. März 2013

@ soflauthor

Thanks for responding. Will take another look at your site.

Was I imagining it or did I read somewhere that you were taking a look at the B-pillar wear issue?

Thanks

gasnomo | 15. März 2013

how do we find out where in the queue we are?

Soflauthor | 15. März 2013

@Robert: We are not currently looking at the B-Pillar issue. That's something that Tesla should address internally.

@cfriedberg: We did not assign CCI production waiting list numbers. We'll send you an email when your group of 100 CCI Production Waiting List comes up for access into the CCI store. We're grouping folks by the date they signed up to the list, which began in October, 2012, so if you've signed up recently, patience must be a virtue. We will get to you ... promise.

stevenmaifert | 15. März 2013

@Soflauthor - We are an impatient lot :) What you might do, if you have the time, is periodically post the CCI Production Waiting List confirmation email date range group you are currently working with. Would give us some sense of when we might expect your invitation email.

Brian H | 15. März 2013

Sofl;
I believe Robert was referring to a shield, or add-on protective layer, not an actual fix of the pillar.

Soflauthor | 15. März 2013

@Stevenmaifert: Good idea! We'll do that beginning with the email we send to the first 100 CCI Production Waiting List members on Tues.

@BrianH: You're right. My bad. We've added it to the list of possible accessories, but guys, you gotta give us a chance to properly launch the CCI first :) We have at least 10 items on the to be considered for future products list at the moment.

2050project | 15. März 2013
Robert22 | 15. März 2013

@Brian-
I was indeed referring to a barrier-type product, thanks for clarifying.

@Soflauthor-
Great to hear it's on your list. A low-profile, wear-resistant wrap material with a leather-safe easily removable adhesive backing came to me in a dream, but I'm happy to leave design considerations in your capable hands.

bobinfla | 16. März 2013

@soflauthor: 10 items under consideration and you don't list what they are? You tease!

Soflauthor | 16. März 2013

@bobinfla: No intention to tease. My motto is -- talk about stuff only when you're ready to build something -- before that, it's just talk :)

I will say that the likely next candidate will be rear seat cup holders and storage, but as I mentioned, that's not for a while yet.

ddruz | 17. März 2013

+1 Solflauthor on rear seat cup holders and storage. IMO your company will sell more of those than the CCI and be your biggest profit item.

Mgil | 17. März 2013

Soflauthor if you do design the rear seat console, could you just replicate somewhat the design that Tesla teased us with? That should speed up the design process. I was told that they have no intentions on coming out with one for quite some time as they are focusing on producing cars and fixing any bugs that arise.

Soflauthor | 17. März 2013

@Mgil wrote: Soflauthor if you do design the rear seat console, could you just replicate somewhat the design that Tesla teased us with? That should speed up the design process.

I really like the Tesla prototype design, but many have argued that it eliminates one of the rear seats. We think that there's another solution that would allow the 3 rear seats to remain usable and yet still provide two cup holders and a little storage in an effective manner.

But all of this is not even on the drawing board (what an antiquated phrase :) yet. There an awful lot we need to do to make CCI delivery more efficient and to ramp up production. That has to come first.

On Tuesday, we invite the first group of CCI Production List members (I'll post the date range that defines the first Production group tomorrow or early Tuesday) into our invitation-only CCI Store. Hopefully, that will result in additional CCI orders and an even greater need to focus on CCI ramp-up for the moment.

Soflauthor | 18. März 2013

Tomorrow afternoon at just after 4:00pm EDT, we'll send an email with appropriate access information to the first 100 members of our CCI Production Waiting List. As promised a few posts back (hat tip to @Stevenmaifert), here's a very rough indication of where you might stand if you're on the waiting list and remember the approximate date you signed on:

The folks who will gain access to our invitation-only CCI store tomorrow signed onto the waiting list between October 17, 2012 and December 4, 2012. I would advise against trying to do a rough linear extrapolation from that number. The sign-up curve went non-linear in December and continues to grow rapidly so ... If you haven't gotten on the list and have interest, visit www.teslaccessories.com.

Tomorrow, we ship the first group of Custom CCIs (all with CF decks) to some of the folks who ordered last week. We'll try to ship some additional Custom CCIs (with other veneers) later in the week. We're very proud of the fact the we're shipping well ahead of promised fulfillment dates, but please be patient as we encounter an occasional back-ordered component or veneer.

As an aside, it's fascinating to see the most popular trims and upholstery colors emerge from our ordering profile. I'll share some of this data with you, but not until we've seen at least a month or two of orders so that the statistics are meaningful.

Brian H | 18. März 2013

Meaningless statistics are the most fun to extrapolate!

jat | 18. März 2013
2050project | 21. März 2013

@jat-
Top-notch photo gallery of the CCI - nice photos. Others have taken your lead, pointing out your gallery on TMC, and following up with some photojournalism of their own, with their own versions of CCI galleries of the tan model, then, black version dressed with carbon fiber too later in this thread:
http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/9872-Soflauthor-s-center-c...

Soflauthor | 26. März 2013

This morning, we sent out CCI Store invitations to another 100 members of the CCI Waiting list. To date, 300 people have gained access to the store. If you signed onto the CCI Waiting List on or before December 27, 2012, you should now have received an invitation. Next week we'll send another 100 invitations. For those further down the list, thanks for your patience.

We began shipping veneer decks for the CCI this week and have now shipped Lacewood, Obeche Gloss, and Piano Black, along with Carbon Fiber. Correspondence to Model S trims has exceeded our expectations. We hope to begin shipping Obeche Matte soon.

We know of at least two owners of the CCI who have already begun to trick it out" For an interesting and excellent adaption, see Artsci's "Modifications to Soflauthor's very fine CCI" thread at:

http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/15198-Modifications-to-Sof...

The CCI will also be a part of fully customized (inside and out) Model S that will appear soon.

We also had our first dual order—husband and wife owners of Model Ss who both wanted CCIs. Actually, they could have swapped the CCI from car to car, except that they had different interiors :)

It's very cool to think that the CCI is now installed in Model Ss across the USA. And it all began with a sketch and a foam prototype in the Dania Beach store. Amazing.

We're working very hard to streamline our production and fulfillment processes so that we can shorten delivery times, but for now, ramp up will continue to be slow as we figure out the best strategies for all of this.

DrTaras-BreastCar | 28. März 2013

The CCI: Design & Art can coexist in concert & is testament to engineering execution! I have the Tan with Obeche-gloss. In case you want to see pictures you can find them on my TMC thread here:
http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/14877-Dr-Taras-Model-S-get...

Soflauthor | 29. März 2013

Update

We've now completed three cycles of invitation mailings to the CCI Store. If you signed-on to the CCI waiting list on or before December 27, 2012 you have now received an invite. For those who have placed orders, our sincere thanks!

Next Tuesday, another group of 100 Waiting List members will receive invitations. If you signed onto the waiting list between December 28, 2012 and January, 11, 2013, you can expect your invitation on Tuesday, April 2nd. On April 9th, we plan on sending invitations to those who signed onto the list between January 12, 2013 and January 30, 2013.

Our waiting list continues to grow rapidly, and we know that many of you are anxious to order. Rest assured that you will get your invite, but we’re purposely ramping up slowly so that we can manage production, control quality, and provide the kind of customer service that we hope you’ll appreciate.

Because there are a growing number of CCIs out “in the wild,” we’re getting very useful feedback from Model S owners. If you'd like to read what other CCI owners are saying about the CCI, we've created a new Testimonials web page that you might find interesting:

http://www.teslaccessories.com/Teslaccessories.com/Testimonials.html

We’ve also provided links there to some media coverage of Teslaccessories.

Our first few weeks after launch have been fun and frenetic. With your patience and help, we’ll navigate the ramp-up smoothly and begin delivering CCIs at a more rapid pace over the coming months.

Soflauthor | 01. April 2013

For those who have interest in our thoughts about the newly announced TM "Drop-in" console, we've posted a few comments over at TMC:

http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/9872-Soflauthor-s-center-c...

Pungoteague_Dave | 01. April 2013

Somehow Softauthor or one of his friends managed to kill the other thread on the far superior TM center console that is about to knock a big hole in his business plan. It is time for Softauthor to go too. I just flagged. Please flag as inappropriate so this thread will disappear.

sagebrushnw | 01. April 2013

@ Pungoteague

What is inappropriate or offensive to Softauthor comments? I don't seen anything inappropriate.

Rod and Barbara | 01. April 2013

@ Pungoteague - The thread on the TM drop in console it here: http://www.teslamotors.com/forum/forums/center-console-tesla-available-s.... Your comments about Soflauthor are untrue and inappropriate. As for which is superior, that seems likely a matter of personal taste. It's nice to have a choice.

jat | 01. April 2013

@PD - yeah, I don't see anything where @Soflauthor did anything objectionable.

Regarding the Tesla console, I am intrigued by what appears to be modular functionality. The CCI (or Boris's center console) doesn't match exactly what I want (in particular I find the cell phone pocket useless), but it comes close. The big deal is that it looks like it came with the car (ironically, even moreso than the Tesla one) -- that is the primary thing you are paying for, or else you just spend $20 at the Container Store and be done with it.

It's a free market, and the customers will vote for which one they like with their wallets. Certainly, the OEM has a big advantage, and it is not uncommon that when they add a feature that was filled by third parties -- consider Stacker vs Microsoft after MS-DOS6 included compression after examining the code.

2050project | 02. April 2013

@jat - "The big deal is that it looks like it came with the car (ironically, even more so than the Tesla one) -- that is the primary thing you are paying for"

Agreed, more opportunity to mix-and-match. Looks like CCI is upholstered in all the colors - not just black - and trim options are really ample (not just a small tile), the whole console top surface can be "synced" up with MS interior finish.

cloroxbb | 03. April 2013

The design of the Tesla drop in is much more in line with what I want. It looks like you have "inserts" that let you decide how you want it set up. So if you want 2 cup holders in there, and a pocket for the phone close to the usb ports, then you can.

When I finally get my Tesla, and IF I consider getting a console, I will more than likely get the Drop-in. BorisT's was close to what I would want but I just like the design on the Drop in, a lot more than either other choice. :)

Soflauthor | 09. April 2013

It's been one month since our product launch and we've posted another product update at TMC:

http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/9872-Soflauthor-s-center-c...

Later today, we’ll send invitations to still another group of waiting list members who will now gain access to the CCI store and be able to configure their personal CCI. If you signed onto our waiting list on or before February 12, 2013, you should now have received an invitation.

Thanks for your continuing interest and support.

stevenmaifert | 09. April 2013

Roger - Thanks for the update. Fedex is holding mine for pick-up later today.

stevenmaifert | 09. April 2013

Quick follow-up. Picked it up this morning and installed this afternoon. Installation was easier than expected. Once I dipped the front end under the cubby, it just dropped into place. Got the tan with the obeche gloss. Wood grain was a perfect match. The CCI looks like it came with the car.

Brian H | 09. April 2013

Try a Mylar bag to block the signal.

Soflauthor | 16. April 2013

Update --

This weekend we were able to participate in the Florida TMC meet-up in Dania Beach. Many thanks to Larry Chanin for organizing the event and the invite.

As always, it was great to meet other Model S owners and compare notes. A parking lot full of Model Ss is a very cool thing to see.

Many of the attendees were able pop the CCI into their own Model Ss. A number of owners had interior upholstery and trim combinations that (by sheer luck) corresponded to the four CCI variants that we brought to the meeting.

There are plans afoot for the CCI to make a few other appearances at local TMC and related independent Model S events over the coming months.

On the technical front, our production process and supply chain continues to improve, and next week, we’ll be ready to commit to more rapid fulfillment times.

Later today, we’ll send an invitation email to the next 100 members of our Waiting List. If you signed onto the list on or before February 24, 2013, you should now have received an invitation.

Because our ability to fulfill orders is improving significantly, we intend to increase the number of invitations sent per week (beginning next week). So those of you who have been waiting patiently should soon see the “It’s Time to Configure your CCI” invitation email.

cgiGuy | 16. April 2013

Looks like nice product, but here is some feedback from a potential customer's perspective on the sales approach:

1. I find the constant defensive replies from Soflauthor about any negative comments posted to be a bit juvenile. Let the product and the people who have purchased it speak for themselves. Also, it makes me wonder what type of effort the company would put into arguing with me if I had an issue with the prodcut after I bought it.

How many respectable companies go onto Amazon and argue with customers about bad reviews? Because in the end, if there are some bad reviews but it still has 4-5 stars from the majority, it's considered a good product and others will buy.

2. "Signature waiting list" and "Time to configure your CCI" emails: imitating Tesla's approach doesn't make me want this more or feel more special that I would get to give you my money. But, it does give me a "bandwagon" feel. Just give an honest time-frame on the website of how long the wait would be if someone ordered today (based on how many backorders you have).

3. Price: I do the same thing on any website where they hide the price unless I sign up or send an email--hit the "X" in the corner of the window and move on.

Take it for what it's worth.. one person's opinion.

Soflauthor | 22. April 2013

Update

Since the CCI store opened six weeks ago, we’ve been focused on optimizing our production and fulfillment processes. We’re pleased to report that our process continues to improve. The fulfillment time required for Standard CCIs has been reduced by 50 percent. We are now committing to ship Standard CCI orders within one to two weeks of receipt of order.

Although our production process for Custom CCIs has improved, we cannot yet modify our existing fulfillment commitment. Custom decks that provide excellent conformance to Model S interior trim take time to fabricate. We continue to work on ways to expedite the production process for veneers while at the same time maintaining the high quality we demand. Thanks for your patience.

In an effort to keep up with fulfillment, we’ve brought on increased staffing to help expedite internal processes. And, we have been exploring upcoming events and partnerships that we look forward to announcing shortly. Orders continue to come in across the U.S. and Canada including another owner who ordered two CCIs for the two Model S vehicles in his garage.

Tomorrow, we’ll send out another set of configuration emails to our invitation-only CCI store. If you signed onto the CCI waiting list on or before March 6, 2013, you will have received your invitation.

Brian H | 23. April 2013

Glad the business is (apparently) prospering. You appear to be doing all the right things.

Soflauthor | 23. April 2013

Thanks, Brian.

Thanks to all the support from Model S owners here and over at TMC, our waiting list continues to grow, our sales are excellent, and we're happy to report continuing progress.

Brian H | 23. April 2013

With the probable tripling of MS owners this year, your potential is excellent. Will you be shipping to Europe?

Soflauthor | 23. April 2013

@Brian H: We have a fair number of folks from Europe who are on our CCI waiting list and have expressed more-than-casual interest in the CCI. We do intend to ship to Europe.

silenus136 | 01. Mai 2013

I've had my cci and model s for 6 weeks now, and I am a huge fan of both. The cci is gorgeous and functional. For me it is the perfect amount of extra storage. My sole "complaint" is wishing the phone cradle faced the phone towards me. I was showing my car to a friend just last night and I caught him running his hand over the curves of the cci admiringly (sounds weirder than it was), as he commented on how beautiful the car is. Like everyone else who has seen my S, he had no idea it was aftermarket.

Robert22 | 01. Mai 2013

Having the phone face away from us has the added benefit of increased survival.

2050project | 02. Mai 2013

@silenus136 - prob safer to not have the phone tempting you to text, email, etc. But, I've seen some cool mods with folks changing the orientation up a bit:

http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/14877-Al-amp-Ed-s-Dr-Taras...

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=508843395817548&set=pb.450251081...

Soflauthor | 02. Mai 2013

@Silenius136: Thanks for the kind words.

If you wouldn't mind, please contact me through our Teslaccessories.com website. I have a small request. Thx much.

Brian H | 02. Mai 2013

Danger! Someone has rigged a YT workaround for the touchscreen. See the General Discussions. How many MS drivers will that wipe out?

>:(

Soflauthor | 02. Mai 2013

Apologies for the late post this week. As more and more Model S deliveries are hitting the streets, things are getting pretty busy for us … but in a good way. Our CCI Wait List continues to grow and our challenge is to expedite order fulfillment for Custom CCIs so that delivery times contract. We have all elements of our production process in good shape, with the singular exception of veneer production, which is progressing well, but end-to-end production turnaround will continue to be optimized.

Other News:

The CCI is and will continue to be our flagship product, but it’s time to begin thinking about other aftermarket accessories that will serve the Model S community well. We’ve begun preliminary planning for three new potential products—one exterior and two interior. Ideas for all three follow-on products have been driven by requests from current CCI owners, CCI wait list members, and on-going commentary at the TM and TMC forums.

It’s simply too early to talk about these products yet, and it will take some time for them to evolve, but I can promise that we’ll apply the same level of dedication to their development as we did with the CCI.

Next week, we’ll send invitations to Wait List members who signed on prior to March 28, 2013. To members on our CCI Wait List, thanks for your support and patience. To those who haven’t yet signed on to our no-obligation CCI Wait List, visit:

http://www.teslaccessories.com/

You’ll also be first to hear about new products along with priority ordering, discounts, and information as things develop.

2050project | 04. Mai 2013

Just saw some pretty cool interior add-ons... mods to the Center Console Insert with decals (done in all CF) and painted (I think?) done to storage area roll-door. And, this owner also got matching plush floor mats with special stitching to match from Lloyds:
http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/9872-Soflauthor-s-center-c...

TikiMan | 04. Mai 2013

SF,

I have to admit, your console insert with the tan and carbon-fiber looks fantastic!

Soflauthor | 13. Mai 2013

Update
Update

We’ve gotten our production process to the point where we can now increase the size of our weekly mailing to the CCI Waiting List. If you got on the waiting list between March 17 and April 18, 2013, you will receive your invitation to visit the invitation-only Teslaccessories store tomorrow.

Although we have not changed our fulfillment policies in order to account for unforeseen supply chain issues, our day-to-day reality is that the Standard CCI is being shipped within 2 to 3 business days from receipt of order. Typically, recent Custom CCI orders are being shipped between 2 and 4 weeks of receipt of order. That’s a significant improvement.

Over at TMC, I've posted a pictorial "hint" for 1 of 3 new aftermarket products that we're looking at. If you have interest, see:

http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/9872-Soflauthor-s-center-c...

Soflauthor | 13. Mai 2013

Sorry for the double "Update" -- typo.

2050project | 18. Mai 2013

Just saw plugincars.com featured CCI and some other aftermarket options:
http://www.plugincars.com/accessories-your-electric-car-nissan-gm-or-tes...

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