Every new M3 owners nightmare coming true

Every new M3 owners nightmare coming true

So while I was driving back from my vacation my month old M3 got rear ended pretty bad. I was stopped at the traffic light waiting for it to turn green. Got rear ended by a car who was pushed into my car by an uninsured driver to make matters worse for us. So was a multi car crash.
Fortunately all of us involved including passengers miraculously escaped unhurt. Both cars behind me were totalled. One thing I have to commend is the excellent impact beam protecting rear of M3. If not for it the damage to us and the car was going to be bad.
I have had some minor fender benders in past with substantial cost to fix but M3 has help up pretty well considering the impact velocity. I have to now deal with a certified Tesla body shop who has given me a 4-6 week timeline for repairs and probably costing around 7K provided they dont find any undercarriage issues or battery damage. They got to replace rear trunk, bumper, sensors, lights to start with.
Not sure how big of a dent this has on my insurance premiums despite me not being at fault.

CharleyBC | December 14, 2018

Glad the humans are all okay. Sad for your car and the long repair timeline.

So, what about the uninsured idiot driver? Isn't it a crime to drive without insurance? I don't know--I never considered NOT having insurance.

Rbnaidu | December 14, 2018

Apparently its a serious offense in CA but such a driver could be let go with just some fines or license suspension. I was told by the cop that this driver had some priors as well. I guess I was just in the wront time and wrong place. For now I have to eat up my deductible and would really doubt if my insurance is able to recover any money out of this uninsured idiot.

CharleyBC | December 14, 2018

Well, you said UI's car was totaled, so maybe there is some little comfort that he/she won't be back on the road soon.

CharleyBC | December 14, 2018

(Obviously UI's car can't technically be totaled if it's not insured, but you get my drift.)

ST70 | December 14, 2018

I thought if you have uninsured insurance you don't have to pay a deductible if you get hit???

jithesh | December 14, 2018

so u got hit by a uninsured driver why would you have any impact on your insurance premiums? that doesnt makes any sense to me.

ODWms | December 14, 2018

Actually, I wouldn’t be surprised at all if the insurance premiums were affected, even with uninsured motorist’s and not being at fault. I’d surely hope not. But wouldn’t be surprised if it happened.

Rbnaidu | December 15, 2018

@odwms my worry is the same. My insurance says we are not at fault but as the other party doesn’t have insurance I could wait for them to recover my deductible from uninsured but they give no guarantees. Insurance agent was not sure if my premium would increase as there are many factors involved. But yes as unfortunate as it is I wouldn’t be surprised if it increased.

@st70 uninsured insurance only pays medical bills.

pjfsu2002 | December 15, 2018

@rbnaidu Is telsa giving you a loaner while your Model 3 is being repaired? and are they charging you or the insurance company?

Rbnaidu | December 15, 2018

Tesla body shop wont even answer my calls. They are extremely busy and from what I heard they did not have any appointments available for next few weeks. I had to take my car instead to a certified tesla shop in bay area. So no loaners. I am not really sure if Tesla would provide any loaners at their body shop for insurance based repairs.

wayne | December 15, 2018

Your insurance may pay for a loaner/rental.

RES IPSA | December 15, 2018

Under CA law, you have the right to take your car to any body shop you want. Tesla cannot force you to go to a certified shop. However, a friend of mine took to it to a non certified shop (a body shop he trusts and has used for years) and Tesla is taking a very long time to get the needed parts to the body shop. He has waited 3 plus months now for parts.

Just body work... nothing with the battery or anything special like that.

RES IPSA | December 15, 2018

I drive carefully, but now I drive extremely carefully as I am aware that if I get hit by someone, my M3 may take months to repair.

Also. if you have collision coverage and/or uninsured motorist coverage, make sure your insurance will agree to pay for the full cost of the repairs. They may only cover some of the cost as some insurance companies have determined that Tesla certified body shops charge way more than industry standards.

You can read threads about this on this forum from months ago.

Colguy | December 15, 2018

I had a minor fender bender in my own driveway in MA 3 weeks into ownership! Certified Tesla Body shop original estimate from pics was $1200. Once they took it apart, found additional parts required. Due to labor, estimate went to $10k. Insurance is covering, but part keeps getting delayed from Tesla. Been in the shop since late Oct. I'm having serious withdrawal. Waited 895 days for the car, it has now been in the shop longer than I have had use of it. Did I really get it or was this all a dream?

Rbnaidu | December 15, 2018

@RES IPSA In a crash scenario like mine you cant really do much. It could happen to anyone but I wish it doesn't. I am with Geico and have been told by body shop that they had no trouble with getting repairs covered by them. I still have to cough up the deductible. I did hear about delays at non Tesla certified body shops. Not sure if that is intentional from Tesla when supplying parts.

@Colguy My repair advisor tells me things have started to improve with Tesla being able to provide parts sooner. It used to be very bad until a month ago. Problem is Tesla freight delivers all of their parts to body shops regardless of the distance from their warehouse and all of this takes time.

Atoms | December 15, 2018

You mentioned person behind the car behind you was uninsured. If car behind you was insured, then their insurance is responsible.
Try to use your SC for inspection and for parts ordering. Probably better than using the repair shop. Just need list of parts and SC can order for you. If car is drivable, I would drive the car and not allow repair shop to charge storage charges which is profit for then.

pjug03 | December 15, 2018

Also make sure the insurance company pays you for diminished value. When you go to sell or trade in the car in a few years you will loose $5000 to $7000 of value when they see your car was in a collision.

Madatgascar | December 15, 2018

The same thing happened to me, except I was the middle car in the same kind of 3-car accident. Mine was totaled:
One thing to watch out for: the Tesla certified body shop I went to charged $250 per day just to store the car, and continued to do so for two weeks after they determined the car was totaled. They did not communicate with me or my insurance company; they said they reported to Tesla that my car was totaled and expected Tesla to tell me. Huh???

Other problem was that the driver in front of me claimed later that I hit her first. She says she clearly felt two impacts; that meant my insurance company got drawn into it.

The Model 3 performed very well. I was the only person in the crash that wasn’t injured, and it was a pretty hard hit.

Rbnaidu | December 15, 2018

@Madatgascar good to hear you escaped unhurt. I will call up body shop to confirm they dont charge any storage fees. Thanks for the tip.
@pjug03 Whose insurance provider should I go after to claim DV on my car? Coincidentally both mine and car behind are with same provider and they have determined both of us not at fault. So I am not too sure if my insurance would agree to pay up DV. Do you know how to get a DV appraisal done? No harm in trying.
@Atoms I tried the same argument with my agent and he said the car driver behind me was not at fault either as he was pushed into my car by the 3rd car who was at fault. Mine and car behind me are with same provider so they outright declined to pay up any of my deductible. they would try to recover deductible from the uninsured party which i doubt will happen.

ReD eXiLe ms us | December 15, 2018

Madatgascar: Wait... It was the repair shop that determined your car was 'totaled', not the appraiser for your insurance company? How does that work? I wouldn't pay them a dime for storage given that description, ever.

txesla | December 15, 2018


There are multiple factors to consider here.

UMBI - Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury - Pays for medical bills

UMPD - Uninsured Motorist Property Damage - Pays for loss to your property. And deductible does not apply.

However, if your insurance company files it under Collision then you have to pay a deductible. As far as future rate increases, depends on state insurance laws. If your state allows to check for prior claims in the past 3 or 5 years and use that as a rating factor then you can expect your rates to be higher. Please speak with your agent and if he/she doesn't know take your policies someplace else who can provide you sound advice.

Rbnaidu | December 16, 2018

@txesla You are right about uninsured motorist property damage option. In state of California though they do not allow selection of uninsured motorist property damage alongside collision coverage. Just got to know this yesterday. Instead they offer deductible waiver option which I failed to choose while getting the policy. Deductible waiver would have paid for it in situations involving uninsured drivers. I wish I had got these details earlier. My fault. I have changed my coverage now to include it but hope to not use it in future.

CST | December 16, 2018

Speaking of Tesla-certified bodyshops... I went to one to get an estimate for a door-ding and they quoted $1,600 and claimed they had to remove the rear bumper and clear out the rear interior to do it. Not sure why the bumper has anything to do with a door-ding, but there might be shops that are attempting to rape customers. Tesla had it done for me while the car was having paint due-bill work and they moblie guy resprayed it right at the service center and only charged a 1/3 of the price. Looks like new!

kevin_rf | December 16, 2018

This is a big fear in New England, NH does not require insurance. So if you get hot by am uninsured driver from NH, you are in for a headache.

Glad everyone is okay.

RES IPSA | December 16, 2018

@Kevin... "Live free (from insurance) or Die"

pjug03 | December 16, 2018

Diminished value check/money should come from the insurance company who rear ended you.

gmr6415 | December 17, 2018

I've never purchased it before, but when I added the M3 to our insurance I purchased both complete car replacement and accident forgiveness. It was about $5 a month in additional costs for both.