Denouement Of the Annual Service (Prepaid) Debacle

Denouement Of the Annual Service (Prepaid) Debacle

To recap, Tesla never reached out to me to say they had ended the annual service for which I had prepaid for 8 years. When I took in my car on 11 June for this service the SC was anything but transparent about this service but said they would "honor" it. Since at that time I still trusted the company I figured that meant alignment, tire rotation, various checks and wiper blades. When I went back to pick up my car I found that they had "checked" the horn and windows and had installed new windscreen wiper blades. That was all.

I began the process for a refund for the four remaining services that same day. I received a cheque this week but it was light by one of the four remaining services. The Scottsdale SC actually ran it through as an annual service and what I got for that was a pair of wiper blades at $250 EACH. I am taking additional steps which I have been advised not to discuss, but the fact remains that I have the most expensive set of wiper blades on earth. For kicks I called the Rolls-Royce dealer and they said they replace wiper blades for $100 for both. So 5x the Rolls-Royce price. Nice work if you can get it.

Had any of this been explained to me I never would have left my car on 11 June and instead would have pursued a refund. I suppose this is partly my fault for not giving the SC people a thorough grilling, but I felt I could trust them after almost five years of working with them and I trusted them to do right by me. They failed miserably (or very well, depending on one's perspective). What galls me much more than the overpriced windscreen wipers is the broken trust. I was an early adopter who took a chance on the company and they are still here because of those of us who did. I can deal with a lot but not disingenuousness and dishonesty and I never saw that coming from Tesla.

To wrap up, I do hope the company can make it and overcome the tendency to fly off in forty directions on fantasy projects. They need to concentrate on customer service and keeping promises now more than ever to set the company apart, and since customer service in the car industry as a whole is ghastly, it doesn't take that much effort to treat customers like human beings. I genuinely hope they can get it right, get through this rough patch, and go on to do amazing things for themselves, the planet and their customers. For now though, they will have to earn my business and trust again.

jimglas | July 25, 2019

Tesla has been surprised at how little service their cars need.

johncrab | July 25, 2019

@jimglas - I have heard that as well and regard the annual service as something they added because neither the company nor customers really knew what to expect in the early days. It was a way to looking over cars to see what might be going wrong and it was a good way of bringing revenue into the service centers. That all makes sense. It also makes sense now to kill this programme even with the resulting loss of revenue to free up service centers to work on more serious concerns. I get that too. They should have bothered to communicate with those of us who bought the package and should have been proactive about refunding money rather than hoping we would forget about it. To comment specifically on your comment, it is a very good thing that these cars have turned out to need so little in terms of maintenance and repairs. Anecdotally, one owner back in 2014 received a mailer from a tire shop telling him that his "Tesla Model S is due for an oil and filter change". I'm still laughing about that.

Yodrak. | July 25, 2019

"Anecdotally, one owner back in 2014 received a mailer from a tire shop telling him that his "Tesla Model S is due for an oil and filter change". I'm still laughing about that."

I get similar notices monthly from the Nissan dealership where I bought my Leaf.