You have bought the car, now let lost.

You have bought the car, now let lost.

My Model S was delivered 2 weeks ago. I was given a nice demonstration of the car and the final paperwork was brought to me. I believe the delivery specialist took the paperwork with him. As I needed this for my California rebate and couldn't find it anywhere, I emailed him to ask if he took the paperwork with him. No response. I sent him another emai, and again, no response to my inquiry. I had to call a Tesla product specialist to get what I needed.
Since last week I started noticing a cracking noise in the panoramic roof. This has gotten worse and today I called a service center. The first opening at the service center, which will take about an hour to get to, is March 25th. So, I am going to have to listen to this annoying noise for a month more. In addition, some "notes" the delivery specialist was going to make about the driver's mirror not moving properly must have been filed in the circular filing cabinet as I never heard from anyone about getting this straightened out.
I know Mr. Musk had a quick response to the New York Times reporter about a "deficiency" with the Model S, but how is he going to respond to the voices of those who own the car and are not happy with the company's response to service problems?I have little doubt these voices could become quite loud.

mrspaghetti | February 27, 2013

Let's hope your experience is not common.

ian | February 27, 2013


We all know communication is a weak point with Tesla. Hope it improves quickly!

Hills | February 27, 2013

Yes, this company has growing pains. However, my experience is that multiple attempts will get you service. You already got your paperwork; it took me the 2nd try too to get the paperwork to submit for CA rebate. You already have an appointment; my appointment was also 3 weeks out as well. All you need is to make enough attempts to get one helpful person and that often leads to other helpful people. Yes, it should be easier but this company is balancing so many goals. | February 27, 2013

This has not been my experience after two months of ownership. Hopefully they make things good quickly for you.

lolachampcar | February 27, 2013

My experience has been the opposite and this post belongs in the private section (especially if you want any help).

David Trushin | February 27, 2013

did you mean let loose or get lost?

hsadler | February 27, 2013

Sorry you are having problems. Sounds frustrating.
What was your res and VIN # ? You said you took delivery about 2 weeks ago - was it factory? And what was your config?

jbherman | February 27, 2013

@lola: I took delivery of my car about 6 weeks ago (RN126008; VIN 3319). I'm no longer seeing private forum threads, nor can I start a private thread. My RN has disappeared from my Dashboard (replaced by my VIN). Have you (or anyone else) experienced a change in forum status after taking delivery? I thought that maybe the private function had been removed, but obviously it hasn't. I guess I'll shoot Luke at ownership an email (as if he has nothing better to do). | February 27, 2013

@jbherman No change in my ability to post threads "private" since delivery. Tesla should correct this.

jason_freedman | February 27, 2013

I'd definitely send him something. I'd be a bit frustrated if this was my experience. Then again, I'd go straight to the Tesla store and not move until someone helped me.

Having said that, my experience (delivery date is end of March!) so far has been great. Very proactive and accommodating. I'm the weak link in communication if anything.

ljrudd | February 27, 2013

My post does not belong in the private section. It was meant to get a response from owners. If there are a group of owners who are unhappy, we have a louder voice if we speak in numbers. My car was delivered with these problems and it should not have been so. It should not take 1 month to get an appointment to fix something that was wrong on delivery. I can't understand how it is that most Model S's are less than 2 months old and the service center is 1 month behind. This is something that we the company should have anticipated. We are owners, not beta testers.

rloehler | February 27, 2013

My service experience has been fantastic in Tampa. Both minor problems I had (a weird odor, door handle) elicited prompt responses and next day service at my local service center. My local service manger also gave me his card, personal mobile number, and an invitation to call him first with any problems (I haven't had any since). I have to think that ljrudd's experience is not typical.

lolachampcar | February 27, 2013

I find that the site will log me out from time to time but logging back in gets me access to private posting.

Private posting allows only those with reservations or owners to view the thread. You can post something like this in the open but doing so is a double edge sword. I'm in no position to tell anyone what to do (nor would I if I were in a position to do so). I am just suggesting the conversation might better have been kept to owners and reservation holders.

GoTeslaChicago | February 27, 2013

"My post does not belong in the private section. It was meant to get a response from owners."

The private section IS for owners (and reservation holders who are soon to be owners).

Therefore it should be private.

ljrudd | February 27, 2013

Pardon me. This was my first post. However, I don't think it is a bad thing for non-owners to hear. As the title of my post said, as owners Tesla already has our money and we can now get out of the way. What real voices do we have? It is not with our wallets, but perhaps the fear that others will hesitate to put up $100,000 will get some action.
I understand everyone's fear that decreased sales can be bad for both the company and the owners, but as early owners we have a duty to try to improve the company so that potential purchasers come forward without hesitation that a car delivered with problems will be fixed in a timely fashion. It certainly was my expectation.

olanmills | February 27, 2013

I had a problem with my window. I called Tesla only just today, got into a service center in the afternoon, and I left with the problem fixed in just under 30 minutes.

olanmills | February 27, 2013

Also, I am not saying that anyone should expect bad customer service, but we all talked about this for the past year are two. We are buying cars from a new company with a new product which may or may not have new kinds of problems that people aren't super familiar with, and they can only be serviced in a limited number of locations, and it's likely to remain that way for several years. Not to mention, there's no gaurantee Tesla will even exist five years from now.

I understood all of this while laying down more money than I would ever normally spend. I know what I'm doing. I'm buying a new kind of product from a new business, and the experience is not meant for average Joe and Jane who just wants to plop money down and walk away with a car. Tesla's working up to that.

I only expect Tesla to be responsive and caring. So far in my experience, they have been. | February 27, 2013

+1 olanmills

penguin_brian | February 27, 2013

Re: should this thread be private?

If I were considering making a reservation, I would feel better being able to make an informed decision after reading the good *and* bad feedback.

Hiding the issues does not help. If I only read good feedback, I would start to wonder what is going on. No company is perfect. What is this company hiding from me?

Some bad feedback does not mean the sky is falling and I should avoid the product. I have pre-ordered another product that is receiving heaps of angry comments about poor delays, poor communications, etc. When in actual fact the communications seems much better then any other company I have dealt with.

Unfortunately, some people will jump to conclusions without proper investigation. Media included. Maybe people willing to spend $50,000 and above on a car are more likely to be the ones to jump to conclusions.

Apparently the NYT article cost Tesla $100m. Really? Are people that stupid? To make a decision based on one review?

So I don't know what the solution is.

As it is, while Tesla definitely has areas that need to be improved, I think I would be able to trust it enough to make a reservation. If only I could justify the expense...

eelton | February 27, 2013

@the OP:

I had the same experience with my DS--she never sent me the delivery paperwork, and she didn't answer two e-mails I sent her. I finally contacted Ownership Experience, and they sent me the documents.

I also asked Ownership Experience about my ill-fitting hood. They said someone from Service would contact me shortly, but they haven't (that was over a week ago).

olanmills | February 27, 2013

Also, FWIW, Tesla employees do read the forums, so by all means, I believe customers should post problems and complaints, as well as call and email customer service directly.

That said, I find that a lot of people blow things out of proportion and use overly emphatic language because they feel they have been slighted.

I used to visit gaming forums a lot, and this behavior is pretty normal I guess, but still it can get silly.

Hills | February 27, 2013

These are employees stretched thin. I am not making excuses for them as I think it is bad business and bad manners to make promises that are not kept. That said, this is a start-up making a complex ground-breaking product. Things fall through the crack. Call ownership experience nicely, call again nicely if you don't like the first call. Call service. Call store manager nicely. You will end up with someone helpful and you will get service. I did all of the above and I got service.

I had to call PG&E 6 times over a two week period to get enough information to go ahead with 2nd meter, then the PG&E lady who made the house call told me I needed to pull new cables and pay for tearing up the street. She was wrong. By being courteous to her she called back to tell us she was wrong! PG&E has been in business for what, 100 years?

hsadler | February 27, 2013


You didn't say which service center you are dealing with.
I suspect it may not be a problem of '1 month behind' - it may be that they know your problem and they don't have the parts on hand to fix right away. No sense making you come in.
I would make a detailed list of all your concerns and when you do visit the service center, you will be prepared to address all your issues in addition to getting the roof adjusted.

Anthony H | February 27, 2013

Hills is exactly correct. That's worked very well for us.

Tesla hasn't been perfect, but who amongst us is?

David Trushin | February 27, 2013

ljrudd speak for yourself please. I have only good things to say about the Chicago service center. They have been prompt in addressing my issues. I am very happy with the service.

Mark K | February 28, 2013

Ljrudd - unresponsive service is always a bummer, and TM his known growing pains right now. From time to time, I've experienced such frustrations with my Mercedes dealer too though.

Looking at others' experiences, the overwhelming probability is that your issues will get fixed. I hope you get satisfaction soon.

I have a separate question for you: What do think of the car?

clarkdubreuil | February 28, 2013

I am due for delivery next Friday. I assume this is the Public thread. How do I access the "Private" areas of the Forum?

c.bussert67 | February 28, 2013

Is your cracking noise from the Pano roof only when it is open?
I have that symptom. Car is solid as can be when it is closed, but when it is vented/opened in any way it sounds like plastic rubbing as the chassis flexes when you drive.
I haven't brought this to attention only cause I've had such bad experiences with typical dealerships that mess something else up in the process, my car comes back with other issues. Everything works just fine. It only makes the noise when it is open and since it's cold outside, I rarely have it open. I love my S and hate the thought of dropping it off for work. It seemed so minor in the light of all the car is, and does.
I am curious now if it is a common problem and maybe they are coming up with a solution like hsadler mentioned.

jkirkebo | February 28, 2013

Yeah, the employees are probably stretched pretty thin at this point. Production is around 450 cars per week, with only a few going to Canada. When EU production starts, 150 or so cars per week should go to Europe, making US delivery employees life a bit less hectic.

jat | February 28, 2013

@olanmills - exactly. When I decided to buy the car, I had to decide that I was willing to live with the purchase if Tesla went under, never built a service center or any superchargers near me, etc. I expected glitches, and so far I have been extremely impressed with how few glitches there actually are.

Hills | February 28, 2013

Idiom: You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.

We all have problems, we all need help from time to time. Incendiary headlines and remarks probably won't make the "help" arrive sooner.

cpetrush | February 28, 2013

I called Freemont service center and got an appointment two days later, because that was the soonest I could get there. Although, my window is stuck open so I can't drive it. So maybe if your problem does not prevent normal use of the car, a service appointment will not be made a priority.

Electron | February 28, 2013

I think they are definitely triaging service. Minor issues will be scheduled later than driveablity.

pbresnan | February 28, 2013

I must say that my expereicne has been much the same as ljrudd's.
Zero follow up on the list of items noted at delivery, despite a promise to do so. After complaining (which I would rather not do) I was repeatedly told I will hear from my service center and never have. I have been repeatedly told my complaints have been raised to a manager, but I've never herard from any such person. Was told my plates would arrive long ago and they have not.

I disgaree with those who say these issues should not be shared publicly. I love the car, but I don't love the car company.

The specific problems with the car are not major; the issues with communication and responsiveness are major.

Mark K | February 28, 2013

"I love the car, but I don't love the car company."


Not everyone feels this way, but authentic sentiment like this is heart-breaking. TM, please listen.

Can't get everything perfect all at once, but reasonable customer service is not optional.

Success at the mission requires faith in the brand.

ljrudd | February 28, 2013

I love the car. It is fun to drive, but that cracking sound is very annoying. It is present when the sunroof is closed. In my experience with a similar sound in a previous car it was due to a seal around the windshield. My guess it is a seal around the rear glass portion of the panoramic roof, but haven't had a chance to check this out as I would have to be in the back seat with someone else driving.
My last two cars were a Lexus and an Infiniti and had absolutely NO PROBLEMS with them on delivery or after. Yes, I understand that this is not usually the case with European/German cars, but Tesla should not strive to be better than Mercedes, but as good as the Japanese cars.
I accept the fact that my problem with the service center in West Los Angeles may not be universal, but it may be one of numbers. I don't know this for a fact, but my guess is there are more Telsa's in California/LA than in Chicago because of the weather. I certainly could be wrong about the numbers, but that is based, among other things, upon the fact that there are more service centers in California, and more a planned.
Please understand that my complaint is not with the car, but having to wait 1 month to get into a service center is tough to accept.

alanwwebb | February 28, 2013

Maybe depends on where you are. We've owned a Tesla Roadster Sport for three years in the Denver area and never had to wait for service. Got immediate responses from all levels.

Hills | February 28, 2013

My guess is California accounts for 40-50% of all Model S on the road. There are now about 3 times more Model S delivered than cumulative Roadsters. Over the past two years, I've gotten to know quite a few Tesla people. Still, I was told that they can either cram me in, or wait 3 weeks. I chose wait 3 weeks. The last 3 times I was at the Service center, there were large # of cars, both Roadsters and Model S. I think it is a simple case of growing pains.

c.bussert67 | March 1, 2013

Well lj, I've decided to put my car to the service test. I sent an e-mail to tesla service about the little issues with my car.
I'm in no hurry to get it fixed, so I'm just going to let things happen at their pace. I got my confirmation e-mail from tesla service two days after me alerting them. So we'll see how it goes from here.
The only problem I really had when I first got my car, was with my original charge cable being flakey. I called service line about that, service called me the next day saying they had one in stock to swap out for me. I drove down there to get it, and even though my original cable started working when we tested it there at the shop, they exchanged it with no hassle.

info | March 1, 2013

My service center is in West LA and I've found them to be great, in their own way. I picked up my car at Fremont on 2/2. My DS told me that there was a noise. I really had to strain to hear it. It sounded like a heater fan on very low. I was told this noise shouldn't be there but since it was Saturday, no techs were available to make the quick, simple, non-drive threatening repair. Take it to my Service Center when I get to LA. I got to LA on Saturday nite and waited all the way to Monday morning before I arrived in West LA. There was a problem in that the "simple" fix might not be so simple. No one at the factory really knew exactly what the problem was, but the guys at West LA figured it was a touch screen and would take a day to replace. They set an appointment the next week and arranged for a rental car. I couldn't have been happier. The noise is gone.

However, since that time, I have noticed a cracking from the pano. It is the same noise I got from my Fiat X1/9 when the targa top brackets loosened up after 50,000 miles. (Yes, I know there are a few of you who are old enough to remember Fiat who now doubt what I say because I said I actually got 50,000 miles on one.) At any rate, the Service Tech told me that there was a fix that was about an hour and he was aware of the problem. He scheduled an appointment the next week. I had to cancel. I'll do it when I get a chance. It is a Tomato Soup problem.

What is a Tomato Soup problem? Have you ever eated Franco American Spaghetti? I'm Italian and they might take my DNA away if I admit this, but I have. It's terrible IF you think you're eating spaghetti. If you think of it as tomato soup with noodles, it's not bad. The roof is a major problem if the sound of a crack in an expensive vehicle which should not be there, bothers you. If you know what it is, it will be fixed and it's the only thing you can complain about, it's not very much and you're living a blessed life. This is coming from me who is a real pain in the neck when it comes to my car. But, as long as the factory/service is willing to admit there is a problem and do something to fix it and not give me the sunshine treatment, I'm happy. And sometimes, you get what you give.

Someone called us Beta testers and that's probably true to a large extent. I'd rather have my Tesla warts and all than anything else. Coming back from Santa Monica yesterday I saw a guy with a convertible Aston Martin DB9. Before I got my Tesla I would have felt pangs of envy for him. Yesterday I felt sorry for him. He spent all that money and was going to spend plenty more and I wouldn't trade him. Remember a pretty girl with a pimple is still a pretty girl. And you've got the prettiest.

Have you

Brian H | March 1, 2013

LOL! Great post. Think of yourself as a "gamma tester" (one beyond beta). Every product (of any complexity) always has issues that only mass exposure can reveal. TM did a couple of years of beta testing, but ...

BUT: there is never nohow any such word as "eated". >:p Even with your Italian DNA (while you still have it).

c.bussert67 | March 1, 2013

Okay lj,
Here's my experience... I applied no pressure. Just let Tesla do their thing.
I sent an e-mail about my issues. 2 days later I got an e-mail back saying they would call me to set up a time for service. Aaaalmost 2 days later (just now) they called me and we talked about my issues, and some of the info I think you'll find pertinent to your own situation.
They told me that with the creaking of the pano roof, it is a known issue and is in work for a permanent fix, but right now they have only found temporary solutions. So be patient and when they find a final solution they will fix the cars with that problem at that time.
As far as me taking my car in for my service they said they are definitely booked for the next couple weeks. So I scheduled my service in the first week of April because I will be able to drop it off, if need be, that week.
So, from my experience so far I can't complain. I hope this info helps you. Tesla is trying!
I have discovered an easy fix for the pano creak tho... The awesome sound system! Crank it up!

info | March 2, 2013

Brian H,
You no-a like-a my word "eated". Issa gooda ting dat I spenta zo mucha time tryn to looza my haccent. Ciao, amico!

hsadler | March 2, 2013

@Brian H
"BUT: there is never nohow any such word as "eated""

Of course, everyone knows it should be aten.

Brian H | March 2, 2013

Ra, Ra!