2017 Model X (1 week old car) died while driving

2017 Model X (1 week old car) died while driving

I bought Model X on 13th April 2017. Today I was driving the car as usual and I got a sudden warnings on the dashboard "Car can shutdown any time", "Air suspension not working properly", "Power of the car is reduced", "Call Tesla Roadside Assistance". Speed of the car came down to 10 miles an hr and eventually it died on me. I called Roadside assistance, they sent a tow truck to pick up my car. This has been a very disappointing experience! Has anyone faced this kind of an issue? I am wondering what it could be? Is it common for Tesla owners to see their car failing on them?

dortor | 23. April 2017

only Model X owners.

teslarama | 23. April 2017

never heard of it...hopefully SC will figure it out quick.

pawanvaswani | 24. April 2017

My driving speed was 30 - 50 miles/hr, Battery of the car was showing 140miles, not sure what caused this issue?

john.smith192021 | 24. April 2017

That happened with my 75D after two weeks, they told me it was a 12V battery issue.

Maximus-X | 24. April 2017

Taking delivery of my MX on Wednesday, fingers crossed. But I think this is a rare event.

nnick01 | 24. April 2017

Sounds like the small 12v battery failed (its like a regular car battery). SC should fix it right up hopefully.

pawanvaswani | 24. April 2017

What!! Despite of a bed full of battery, it still has that 12 v battery? That's a news to me. Where is the 12v battery located in the car? I couldn't see it in truck or Frunk.

On the errors dash board, when I got stream of errors one of them was about 12V battery that I totally ignored simply because other errors were pretty scary. I hope the issue is as trivial as bad 12v battery.

I will let you guys know when I hear back from service center.

Leli001 | 24. April 2017

In the frunk, there is a cover near the base of the windshield that needs to be removed. The 12V battery is between the center of the car and the drivers side. Although similar in size to most car batteries (a little smaller), it is of the deep discharge type, the kind used in the telecom industry.

That battery is used for the electronics/computers and also used to energize the contactors inside the main traction battery pack. Once energized, the battery pack power is then available for the motors and A/C or heating.

This is mainly a safety feature as it is a means of disconnect of the main battery pack. It is silly to say but it can be thought of as a 'starter' battery for the main battery pack.

Your problem could be a bad 12V battery (it happens) or a DC-DC converter that is going bad.

JAnnen | 24. April 2017

Leli001: Good description. Thanks.

The dash screen goes crazy with wild error messages.

Could be a connector issues. The Model S had several grounding issue threads on a similar issue:

pawanvaswani: Sorry for trouble. Whatever the issue, Tesla will jump to fix this.

pawanvaswani | 24. April 2017

@Leli001 - What an outstanding description. Thanks a lot for explaining this.

Now that I understand the usage of 12v battery, I tend to agree that my issue was related to 12v battery. Last week it happened twice when I got in the car the screen didn't come up for almost 10-15 seconds. One time I got a message, please wait car is performing start up checks (or something like that). It could be because of bad 12v battery or some connector that keeps it charged. I hope the service center will resolve this issue.

Silver2K | 24. April 2017

If that batteries dies and your pack is full, you still will not be able to drive the car or even get into it.

Silver2K | 24. April 2017


Vawlkus | 25. April 2017

it does sound like the 12v would cause this, and Tesla has had a couple of bad batches of 12v batteries trip them up (they've changed suppliers twice that I know of).

poloX | 25. April 2017

The messages do not seem to relate to the 12V battery. Just curious on why folks say it is? Suspension? Car Power is reduced...? How do these have anything to do with the 12V batt?

Vawlkus | 25. April 2017

it matches error messages that occurred when the initial Model S had a batch of bad 12v batteries.

pawanvaswani | 25. April 2017

@poloX: there was a message about 12v battery but I didn't pay attention because all other messages were pretty scary.

pawanvaswani | 25. April 2017

@Vawlkus: Thanks for confirming. I really hope problem is as trivial as 12v battery.

carlk | 26. April 2017

12V battery was an issue early on for Model S but I rarely hear that anymore. My understanding is it got a (more) sophisticated monitoring algorithm now that could monitor the battery condition so it will know long before battery needs to be replaced. ICE cars could nave battery problems too, some cars like BMW are known to have batteries lasting no more than a year although the first symptom you got is not able to start the car.

Vawlkus | 26. April 2017

carlk: that was part of the issue. The other part was a bad batch of batteries that eventually caused Tesla to switch suppliers over, since the failure rate was far in excess of anything reasonable.

carlk | 26. April 2017

Vawlkus Yes Tesla did both which made happenings like these very rare nowadays.

Leli001 | 26. April 2017

@poloX, a faulty 12V battery, DC-DC converter, and/or bad grounding can cause random intermittent error messages that vary with the components involved. The computers and controllers, although resilient, are very sensitive to power fluctuations which can cause operating problems to manifest within the network. These problems can exceed the fault tolerance of some systems causing the errors to show on the display.

Digital electronics either work or they don't so voltage drop is a big concern when sizing cabling for DC power applications.

The car knew it had a problem but the voltage must have dropped or was varying so quickly that it caused so many other error messages to come in at the same time so it would seem all the different errors were not related.

Model - X | 26. April 2017

So what was the issue?

Solarman004 | 28. April 2017

@pawanvaswani, any diagnosis yet?

pawanvaswani | 29. April 2017

Guys, my car is back :)

The issue was bad connection between high voltage cable and the junction box. As per Tesla service center this is one of the rarest of the rare situation. Bad cable connection has caused some damage to the junction box. To fix this issue SC changed all high voltage cables, regular cables and the junction box. Basically they have changed junction box and every cable that goes in and out of the junction box.

I am very happy to get my car but to be honest my confidence on the car regarding its reliability has gone down by several notches.

Bighorn | 29. April 2017

Invariably it was going to be a bad harness or connection--now that it's remedied you should be good to go. It shouldn't really sour you on reliability, though you will have to absorb that going forward as your faith is restored. It is to be expected in the manufacture of complex systems--

ken | 29. April 2017

get use to it, pretty soon you will be in quite often, my MX is 50k miles and been in 15 times.

Triggerplz | 29. April 2017

@OP So far my MX has never broken down I've had it for a year it's been to the SC twice once to replace the chrome on the FWD and a second time to replace the half shafts to get rid of that Shudder problem which is now gone after the shafts were replaced,

RealToast | 29. April 2017

Coincidentally, my X90D had the same problem with suspension - except the SC detected the problem before delivery. Consequently, they held up my delivery by about 10-days while they fixed the issue. This was super disappointing because I found out about this just as I was driving to pick up the car for its maiden voyage! But, I was happy they caught the issue before delivery, otherwise, I would have been exactly in your shoes and understandably REALLY disappointed.

Since delivery, and after the problem was fixed (some particular module had to be replaced and it took 5 days to get the part) I can not possibly be more happy with my car.

pawanvaswani | 30. April 2017

Thanks guys for your comments. After the repair car is working absolutely fine. I am very happy.

@RealToast : looks like Tesla is dealing with a bad batch of of high voltage cable and junction box. I hope they will fix it at the root. I am glad they caught issue with your MX before the delivery.

One thing interesting thing I observed while using Tesla Model S as a loaner car. Model S is super efficient as compared to MX. I kept the Model S for 6 days while my MX was gone to SC, I drove 15-20miles every day, it had about 200miles charge when it was delivered, I never charged it in 6 days and still had 70miles when I turned it in. That's never the case with my MX (although I just have MX for 8 days).

Any comments from anyone about the efficiency of MX?

linuxkidd | 30. April 2017

@pawanvaswani Re: Efficiency --
Both the Model S and Model X have the same Coefficient of Drag.. HOWEVER, the Model X has more Area, so it's cdA is higher and thus it takes more power to move it through the same air. Further, the X is quite a bit heavier than the S, so this will negatively impact its efficiency as well.

Congrats on getting your X back from the SC, and glad to hear it's working well!


Saxman | 30. April 2017

Glad to hear all is well and you are happy.

ageorge97 | 30. April 2017

Can only say I haven't had any issues with my X at all yet except that the trailer hitch wasn't installed when I got it. Finally got that squared away and all's well.

carlk | 30. April 2017

ageorge97 Same here. Just past one year mark and my X has only been to the SC twice. One was for the seatbelt recall the other for damage I did to the car. And I have a pretty low VIN too (14xx). BTW what do you think of the hitch? Mine was not installed at delivery either but I decided not to have it installed. I likely will never need to use it and think the car looks better without one. I ordered it when it was a no cost option.

Saxman | 01. Mai 2017


I ordered my hitch at time of confirmation but it also wasn't attached at time of delivery Dec 2016. I just recently attached it myself to use with my bike rack. After viewing a YouTube video a few times I found it rather easy to install and took about 10 minutes.