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Model 3 - First in line or wait a few years to work the bugs out?

Model 3 - First in line or wait a few years to work the bugs out?

All of you who are waiting for the Model 3:

Are you going to get one the second reservations open? Or are you going to wait a little bit before you buy one?

At first I was going to be the first in line to get one, as if it was the new iPhone or something. But now I'm thinking that my 2003 Hyundai still has some life left and maybe waiting a few years will be beneficial. After all, how many new features and bug fixes has Tesla released since the Model S came out? And they also started including the some options at no additional cost!

Nanana26 | July 25, 2014

It's 3 years away still, so no I wouldn't order one even if I could right now. By then there will be another i3 and anohter leaf and probably 10 other brands with smaller EV. I don't want to buy a car without knowing what will be out there by then.

David N | July 25, 2014

Please keep in mind that the Model S was Tesla's first crack at manufacturing an automobile. Other car companies have many decades of practice under their belt (and some still can't get it right).
They've learned a lot from their first auto production and I'm confident that everything they've learned will be incorporated into all future models. One of the reasons for the delay in the Model X is Elon's persistence in "getting it right". I have more confidence in Elon than some of the "other" car companies. And please don't forget that every Model Tesla manufactures will be designed to exceed it's ICE competition, so if your still worried about early bugs, well, maybe you should wait. Only you can decide that.

Gen3Joe | July 25, 2014

First in line.

I have confidence that Tesla will stand behind their product.

Red Sage ca us | July 25, 2014

Red's on First. If they show a coupe in January 2015, alongside other body styles, I'm IN. I hope to test drive a Model X and Model S this Fall 2014 though.

Kleist | July 25, 2014

It is a gamble..
When I bought a 1999 VW Passat more or less from the first batch I had about 50 recalls with 10 dealer visits required in the first to years. But then it was reliable for the next 12 years. A coworker bought the same car in 2003 and 3 years later he had to dump it because a never ending string of failures and repairs. The cost cutters simply ruined the car.

DTsea | July 26, 2014

I have an early model S, Vin under 4000. No regrets. No problems. Glad I didn't wait.

babstude | July 26, 2014

i'm fine with ordering one of the first ones - by the time it's available the S will have been out for years and probably a couple year's worth of X on the roads - any "bugs" will be minor to non existant i'm thinking

centralvalley | July 26, 2014

When the Model S was new, charging options for Tesla Motors were nil. (I am assuming here.)

All testing of prototypes were done locally and under more controlled conditions due to the lack of quick charging anywhere, anytime.

By the time the Generation III is in the final developmental stages, the prototypes can (and likely will) be driven all over the globe under all sorts of driving conditions and habits because of the availability of supercharging. Thus any issues with charging, mechanics, software or structure will be able to be quickly addressed and resolved before mass production starts.

I have already promised my wife that we will place a deposit on a Gen III when available!

iuliana | July 27, 2014

First in line. There's a reason they offer warranties. :)

EmperorTytus | July 27, 2014

First in line . . . extended warranty a must.

babstude | July 27, 2014

I have a feeling there will be a lot of us "first in lines", we may all crash the website when the order button becomes available!!!!!

Brian H | July 27, 2014

I was once told by a TM engineer that they field-tested MSes in the remote SC-free wild with a tractor-trailer hauling a SC! (They drove the cars to exhaustion, but couldn't make a measurable dent in battery capacity or performance, btw.)

holidayday | July 29, 2014

First in line. Not sure if I'll be able to afford a possible "Signature" Model 3, so I'll actually be second in line behind the Sigs.
My timeline is 2018, so I would have preferred a year of working the kinks out of the new production line. Not sure if Tesla will keep that timeline, but I hope so.

LMB | July 29, 2014

(LMB spouse)

LMB got the best of both worlds with the S: ordered in 2012 at 2012 prices, but built April 2013 because it was MC Red. By then TM had flushed out a bunch of early build bugs.

GeekEV | July 29, 2014

I'll be first in line with they start taking normal deposits (no more of this $40k crap, please). Assuming the specs are good and it looks decent.

Grinnin'.VA | July 29, 2014

@GeekEV | JULY 29, 2014:

"I'll be first in line with they start taking normal deposits (no more of this $40k crap, please)."

I had a phone chat with a headquarters Tesla customer relations employee about a different issue. In that conversation, he mentioned the $40k deposit for being put near the front of the line. He said that they like raising some of their money that way. I doubt that they would drop this special treatment without a huge outcry from other Tesla customers. So far, I'm not seeing a significant protest against this practice. So I presume that they will continue it with Gen3.

Ron :)

Anemometer | July 29, 2014

First in line for me. I test stupidly complex IT systems for a living, Dont think a few bugs in the maps or audio will upset me. Wonder if they do a beta test programme ;) Quite happy to start a terminal session and do
grep -i error /opt/log/drivetrain/* . I'm assuming it all runs on a custom linux kernel :)

Though I think there likely to be very few power and drive train issues by 2017. my dad used to work for a well known premium auto maker in the UK and was offer a job at their R&D centre. Went on the tour and they had competitor cars on test rig being tested to destruction. With the goal to be producing something better than the competition. I imagine if you pop into Tesla thy have been doing this with their own product as well as tear downs of other cars.

Pretty sure whatever motors they are sticking in will already be on test rigs right now. And will be running againt mock up battery packs, if not exact cells, a simulator... something with the right number of cells and total charge but software contraints put in for the target cells so the Battery management system can be set up and tweaked for various charge and discharge profiles. They'll have millions of development "miles" by then, no actual rolling chassis needed.

Its quite easy to simulate load on the motor by connecting it to another one which can either drag to simulate accelertion, cruising at different speed and climbing, or actually provide zero or reverse load to simulate regen from braking. Prett ysure they'll do what we do in system testing too... basically testing components in isolation. you "stub" out conected systems like the brakes and throttle and dash, but make the motor think they are still there so it takes the inputs and give output as expected in isolation.

Kleist | July 29, 2014

How much are the customer deposits currently? $190M ?

For the individual it is a small sacrifice, but the sum is substantial for Tesla.

EVolution | July 29, 2014

First in line. No questions asked.

GeekEV | July 29, 2014

I understand the fund raising aspect. The only reason I complain about it is because I can't afford to fork over that much up front, let alone well in advance.

Kleist | July 29, 2014

@GeekEV - you are not complaining... but you should understand that Tesla should ask folks who can to help out to grow the company.
Why did EVs fail so far...? Because folks who can barely afford a new car in first place where asked to spend an extra $10k+ on a mutilated piece of sh*t to drive progress ???

Go_Peddle_4_me | July 30, 2014

First in line. It will be interesting to see who actually gets it. I wouldn't imagine that the $40k upfront will actually be that much. More likely to be $20k or such. The $40k would be almost the entire price of the vehicle after options are considered.

mb30 | July 30, 2014

ill try and be first in line behind the large deposits. Max i'm willing to put down on a car sight unseen is like 5K, so i dont think that will be enough for a signature reservation, but i'll be happy just getting in line early (even if not "first").

Red Sage ca us | July 30, 2014

Well, reality tapped me on the shoulder a couple of nights ago and delivered some bad news... If I want a nice, low, sleek, high-powered, all-wheel-drive coupe with falcon wing doors... I'll be first in line to reach the back of the bus. This is supposed to be a mass market car, and the mass market doesn't buy coupes. The Tesla Model ☰ will probably cover those who need a sedan, crossover, minivan, wagon, compact 3-door sporthatch, et al long before a proper coupe comes about. ;-(

Brian H | July 31, 2014

$40K deposit would exceed the base price of the Model III. Not happening.

holidayday | July 31, 2014

"$40K deposit would exceed the base price of the Model III. Not happening"

It could happen. Signature Model 3 is not going to be under $40K. Remember when some Model S Signature Reservation holders finally saw the price tag? They got sticker shock when they were expecting a nice $50K range car. Suddenly, it was 85K base and 100K nicely appointed.

Signature Model 3 will have a similar "max out my 3" type of trim.

Brian H | July 31, 2014

Maybe a $20K deposit. Different car, under different circumstances.

holidayday | July 31, 2014

"Maybe a $20K deposit"

That would be more reasonable.

One of the main reasons for the reservations was for funding of the cars. With the plant already in place, the major things that need funding are the stamps/presses, employees (and training), other equipment, and materials.
Battery costs should be included in the Gigafactory, so Tesla doesn't need to separately "fund" that using reservation funds.

i.e. There is less need for large reservations as a cash resource as compared to the need during Model S/X run-ups.