Wait until you've had the car for 6 months

Wait until you've had the car for 6 months

I have been seeing plenty of first impressions with suggestions for improvements, lists of things not right, wishes, etc. I must admit that when we first got our Signature Model S almost a year ago we had some of those feelings also. If only we had a center console, why is the blinker stalk not where I'm used to, where are the Favorites in Nav, why can't I view map facing direction of travel, etc.

But over time things change. We have come to love many of those differences that originally felt wrong. We've lived without a center console and now I love it. I no longer carry around unnecessary STUFF. Tesla continues to add features with software improvements. Sometimes we are just used to something and when confronted with a different way of doing things it feels wrong. I'm glad Tesla found a way to throw out the norm and rethink our car from the ground up. I bet I'm not the only one who has adjusted and has come to appreciate the differences.

Give it some time.

That being said, THE CUP HOLDERS SUCK!

dlewis | September 1, 2013

I immediately liked the open center for the very reason you have come to love it. I used to have a ton of 'stuff' that would stay in the car for no other reason than it was in a place so I was to lazy to move it. With the open space I don't do that.

fuellss | September 1, 2013

Could not agree more.

richard_grenier | September 1, 2013

I agree with both of you on this one. Less stuff is better, cleaner. It was a brilliant move for Tesla.

Having said that ... I purchased mine in July, and wished they had offered parking sensors. Now they do, but does anyone know if they can be added post-purchase for those of us with the tech package, or
is this limited to new purchases only? Also - I did not notice the sensors in the photos.

GReese | September 1, 2013

I really thought I'd end up buying the center console.

Nope, won't do it. I like the open area after having lived with it.

I can't even explain why, to be honest.

JAFIC | September 1, 2013

Someone mentioned they took their vehicles in for a retrofit.

negarholger | September 1, 2013

+1000 Dripps - same here. The longer I have the S - it is now 6 months - the more I appreciate the smooth, effortless driving. Today I had to drive the Mercedes again... what a pain, just the laboring noise of the engine bother me now. Cup holders - I don't drink ( even water ) and drive...

TeslaLandShark | September 1, 2013

When I took the test drive I really didn't like the regenerative braking. I also expected to turn on creep. Both of these things are examples of what you are talking about.

After only one day of owning the car the creep was off and the regen was set to full. I hate driving our ICE SUV and the constant stepping on the brake pedal. The regen is like down shifting with a manual transmission. Awesome! Six months of bliss and counting.

S4WRXTTCS | September 1, 2013

Do you ever get used to the Windshield wiper control? When I test drove it I thought it was absolutely nuts, and absolutely nuts to have to push a button for a single wipe. In fact after the test drive I vowed never to buy ANY car other than a Tesla that was done that way. The Tesla only got a free pass because they borrowed from the MB parts bin.

The other thing I don't like is the drive select on the steering wheel. Earlier in my life I vowed never to buy a car like that because they were always OLD PEOPLE american cars.

Outside of that I think the width/size of the car will always bug me. I'll get the car in October, but the size is probably what I'm most nervous/fearful of. It's probably the biggest compromise I made to get the Tesla instead of my usual kind of car.

I might also be an odd duck because I really, really loved the Regen. In fact I wanted a stronger re-gen. | September 1, 2013

+1 Dripps I even like the cupholders.

Dr. Bob Reinke | September 1, 2013

S4 +1

Cindy I II III | September 1, 2013

All my cars were manual. Love regen from day one.

Used to throw purse on the other front seat, which could be a problem when having a passenger. Now the purse fits perfectly in the center. The car is much bigger than I would normally consider, for big cars tend to be gas guzzlers. No gas here.

I don't drink fluid in cars in general. Haven't got a chance to dislike the cup holders :-)

cfOH | September 1, 2013

So far, the only two improvements that I expect to still want in 5 more months are:
1) A place for my phone so that it doesn't slide around or fall onto the floor (the cubby doesn't hack it).
2) Sturdier leather on high-wear areas (e.g., the B-pillar)

judimasters | September 1, 2013

@cfOH I agree with the "leather" issue. I have already discussed this with my service center and will have mine replaced "Promised to me" when the fix is available.

richard_grenier | September 2, 2013

Hmm. You folks lost me on the "B-pillar". What section of the seat is that? I'm not noticing any leather wear yet, but I've only had the MS 2.5 months.

nickjhowe | September 2, 2013

@richard - the B pillar is between the front and rear doors. Beneath the front seat belt retraction point, roughly where your left should is. The leather there (if you have it) was seen to wear badly on the very early (beta) cars.

I've had mine for 8 months and mine is still pristine; depends on how you enter/exit the car and on your build.

richard_grenier | September 2, 2013

Thanks, Nick. I see it now, and (like you) I doubt I'm touching it on entry or exit. Nick (or anyone) I posted an earlier question regarding the sensors (proximity) now apparently available with new purchases ($500 option). Does anyone know if this can be factory added for those of us who purchased earlier and have the tech pkg?

ppape | September 2, 2013

+1 OP Yes, Less is more.....when it come to the interior. But when it comes to driving time.....More is much better!! Hubby has been away for 3 days, so I've had solo MS time for 3 blissful driving days! I'm pretty sure I sold 2, and 'educated' at least 3 others who never even heard of Tesla. I know, hard to imagine!........Those people may be the most fun to talk to. That look of amazement in their eyes, looking at something in front of them that they didn't know was possible! One person said. "I had no idea it was possible for an EV to go that far?". They thought 40 & 80 miles with Volt and Leaf was all there was. And then they add "and it looks THIS good!"

I love it!

Grinning extra big the last 3 days....

mumanoff | September 2, 2013

Has only taken me 6 days to appreciate all of the above......can't wait until 6 months !!

nickjhowe | September 2, 2013

@richard - no official news on the PDC retrofit.

shawns | September 2, 2013

I've only had mine a couple weeks, but I'm in the same boat. Didn't like regen at first nor the big open space in the center. Now I love both. Although I do have a yacht floor which I love. I've driven gas cars since getting the Tesla and I feel like I'm in the stone ages hah!

The only issue on the car, that hasn't been mentioned in v5.0 that I don't see becoming ok with time is the speed of the windshield wipers. In very heavy rain, even the fastest setting is no where near fast enough to drive safely. They need to increase the speed of that and am surprised it hasn't already been done. I'm guessing it's something that can be done via an OTA update?

noel.smyth | September 2, 2013

I have mine 6+ months now and I agree with Dripps 100% on this. I love regen, though I am a long time driver of stick shifts. I love the minimalist interior with the open space and I find that just about everyone who sees the car for the first time loves this too.

tes-s | September 2, 2013

The only thing I miss is my fault - should have gotten the upgraded sound for better radio reception and audio quality.

Tesla-David | September 2, 2013

Eight months and absolutely love this car more every day. I have no issues or gripes about this car, and things that need improvement such as internet access and connectivity, I am sure Tesla will fix eventually.

odenator | September 2, 2013

Have had my car for more than 8 months, love it like a child. That being said, I've always hated the empty center console and the poor cup holders. Time did not make this better. SoFlaAuthor's CCI solved both issues and my car now has a complete feel. It also feels less dangerous to reach for my morning coffee now that I don't have to twist my upper body.

TMCproud | September 2, 2013

Hi can you expand on what "SoflaAuthor's CCI" is? Thanks.


J.T. | September 2, 2013


J.T. | September 2, 2013
J.T. | September 2, 2013
TMCproud | September 2, 2013

Thanks jtodtman much appreciated.

Guess this is really a personal preference issue as have read both views on center console space; those loving it or those wanting the accessory. Hope to have new MS end Sept so will likely live with it for a while and decide then.

J.T. | September 2, 2013

I was contemplating the CCI then I asked my wife and she illustrated her answer by placing her pocketbook in the space. She put it down with attitude!

hfcolvin | September 2, 2013

1 week short of 6 months. The subtle one click vs double click for 1 mph/5 mph cruise control adjustments took me a while to get used to but now use them without a second thought. The single swipe control for the windshield wipers really annoyed me at first but I pretty much got the hang of it now and hardly ever spray my windshield by mistake. I think there must have been a software tweak of the auto-wipers along the way as well. I leave mine in auto all the time now.

I have been a fan of the open center space all along and still like it. I think a small drawer in the center armrest for change would be nice though. I currently keep change for tolls/parking meters in a little tin, usually tucked away in that little slot.

one2mark | September 2, 2013

I have had my S since 22 DEC 2012 and I am 10,6xx miles into it, I have the say the cup holders do suck that one was an "EPIC FAIL" and also the SAT Radio reception is not all that great but other than that the car is pretty awesome. Thank you TESLA TEAM! Would love to get a front cam so I don't curb it.

portia | September 2, 2013

Next month will be 12 months! only about 8000 miles, 4 trips from northern to southern California using Superchargers. Love the open console! Best in any car to put my handbag, instead of on a seat! Cup holders holds a Tesla cup, works fine for me. No wear on the leather (and Alcantara headliner) on the B-pillar. (mostly drive 1 or 2 people, a couple of long trips with 2 dogs) 21" tires are not worn unevenly, rotated around 6000 miles. Don't really miss the parking sensor. Been to the service center a couple of times to replace door handles (back in Feb this year). Car works great. Looks great! Ok, it does have a tiny paint chip on the hood (I did not get the paint armor). Still washing the car by hand, more than any other car I have ever owned. Looking forward to a cross country trip in the future with the superchargers!

Tesla Grin still there!

JPPTM | September 2, 2013

Wife loves the open/absent center console (purse stowage), dislikes the visor/vanity mirrors (no lighting). Cup holders are bad, but not a deal breaker. No regrets.

Brian H | September 3, 2013

Have you texted him, "Don't hurry home!"?

There's a partial fix or workaround on the wipers. Check with Service?

I b'lieve teslaccessories claims the CCI closed has ridges deep enough to restrain, if not contain, a purse. Dunno.

J.T. | September 4, 2013

@bh my wife's handbags could hold 2 bowling balls, comfortably. It's more of a satchel or tote thn a purse.

Brian H | September 4, 2013

I'm trying hard not to comment on your wife's big balls, and failing. :(

Darmok | September 4, 2013

+1. It took a while to get used to some things, but I can't go back to driving anything else. In fact, the wife won't let me drive her car because I'm horrible at it. Walk away without locking it (or sometimes without turning it off), can't brake properly, turn on the windshield wipers instead of the signal, complain about the tiny, blurry backup camera screen. The posts from new owners amuse me because we were all there once but most have gotten used to and appreciate the car's differences.

EVMD | September 4, 2013

Wow check this photos and design, Tesla look amazing here!!!!

J.T. | September 4, 2013

@BH there is no try.

Captain_Zap | September 4, 2013


Agree wholeheartedly!
(10 months and 10k miles.)

RobertHPike | September 4, 2013

Anyone bothered by the light level of the dash and control screens at night? I used to turn the dash lights down on my past cars to barely readable for night driving; but the Tesla, even at 0% light level, still is quite bright. Maybe it's programmable or changeable?

Also not happy with the rather poorly made roof flaps. It should have been an order-able option...not impressive.

Other than that, have put 2400 miles on it, found my first supercharger station opening up new road trip possibilities, and in general am in love with the style, power, handling, energy efficiency and sexiness of the car!


Dripps | September 4, 2013

@RobertHPike when I turn the screen brightness down it goes to black (not visible). Too bright doesn't sound possible if it's working correctly.

Captain_Zap | September 4, 2013

@RobertHPike - What do you mean by "roof flaps"?

inverts | September 4, 2013

Have mine for ~6 months, >12.5K miles. I agree with less is more, particularly the center console. Used full regen no creep from day one. Initially, all the screen menus were confusing, now it is second nature.
There are a few things that I would prefer, but nothing that I think is a design flaw:
- HUD indicator/idiot-light when DLR lights are on.
- Wiper controls visible in normal driving position (not hidden behind wheel spoke).
- Better radio reception (have the premium system, but still worse than in old Prius).
- Make switch from day to night screen adjustable; mine goes night too early for my taste. But can override it manually.
- Auto-adjust screen/HUD brightness to ambient light. As there must already be a light sensor somewhere, should not be too difficult to implement. I usually have to increase brightness upon switch to night, then turn it down gradually as the sun goes down, da capo al fine. On the other hand, when such a system goes haywire, it may not be pretty.

I am looking forward to TM opening the TM-appstore for third-party developers. An iPhone control on the 17" is needed, and will gladly pay for it.

Cup holders? They're alright, don't get the fuss. Spilled coffee on day 2 on the passenger leather seat, only my own clumsiness to blame. Cleans up quite nicely. Have been thinking about 3D printing a cup holder insert for the center trough. At around 2K, a printer is still cheaper than that console ;-)

Mathew98 | September 5, 2013

@jtodtman - Does your wife carry your balls in her bowling ball size bag?