model 3 repair and claim

model 3 repair and claim

My model 3 was involved in an accident recently. the front (driver side) was almost smashed and all the airbags were deployed. It's other driver's fault and my insurance company is doing damage appraisal and decide if it's totaled or not. so my questions are
1: do you think if my model 3 is still repairable
2: if my model 3 is repaired, can I ask the insurance for diminished value and how to determine the diminished value?
3: is it still safe to drive if it's repaired.
My model 3 was bought last September it's like a new car. I don't feel comfortable to drive if it's repaired. I am living in Bay Area California. Looking forward to your advice and thanks for your time.

TAC | 17 avril 2019

I hope you get a brand new one for integrities sake! If only a repair option is given 100% make sure only Tesla does te work.
This too shall pass. Good luck im sure it feels horrible right now.

JAD | 17 avril 2019

It will be totalled based on your description. Find a very good repair shop, not the recommended insurance shop.

Mine is in the shop for a month from being rear ended with fairly minor damage, $20k to really do it properly. When done, I will have no concerns driving it.

Sandman89 | 18 avril 2019

Definitely will be totaled. Mine was totaled due to front end damage but no airbags were even deployed. Teslas are expensive to repair plus their salvage value is very high, hence insurance company is quick to total them. My car had 26k worth of damage and it was still deemed an economic total loss.

lerryhe | 18 avril 2019

@qasim715 apparently my insurance company (AAA) did not want to total it. it's about 1 month and they still don't decide to total or not. really frustrated.

calvin940 | 18 avril 2019


It does sound frustrating. Get a better insurance company next go around.

lbowroom | 18 avril 2019

Hard to tell by the description, "the front was almost smashed" how bad the damage is. | 18 avril 2019

Almost any car can be repaired - but at what cost? Generally if there is body damage on two or more panels and all the air bags go off, for most premium/luxury cars it is totaled. Tesla is not much different than other makes in this regard. The insurance company can sell the car for salvage and make back quite a bit, so the damage repairs don't need to cost more than the car is worth for the numbers to work out for them.

To put some simple numbers to it:
Original cost- $50K; Insured payout cost $40K (depends on how old/miles); Repairs cost $30K;

If they total it, and sell the remains for $15K as salvage, it's cheaper for the insurance company than doing the repairs (they save $5K + rental car for the owner costs). Repairs also have a way of finding hidden extra work that is required after the fact that they have to pay for, so the repair cost often goes up.

Sandman89 | 18 avril 2019

@lerryhe I had liberty mutual and it took them over a month to decide to total it or not. Initially they said they will repair it and the body shop even ordered the necessary parts and the parts had even arrived. It was then the appraiser decided to do a 180 and total it as the salvage bid of the vehicle was very high. They paid a total of 54,669 for an AWD Black car with autopilot and FSD that had 12k miles on it. The same configuration now costs 54,500. So in my case it worked out for the better. Hopefully they total yours as I personally wouldn't be comfortable having a car repaired after the airbags have come out and trust me the diminished value claim they will pay out won't be more than 10k. For my damages which totaled about 26k, my body shop guy said that they would have given me around 7k in diminished value had they proceeded with the repair. Hopefully I have provided you with a reference you can work off of when negotiating with your insurance company. Good luck hope you get into another Tesla soon. Such a painful process.

Sandman89 | 18 avril 2019

My experience has taught me that liberty mutual is the company to go for as they truly pay out a fair value for your car. They even have an optional add-on for "Better car Replacement" which I didn't get (in hindsight I should have as it only added like 20 bucks a month to my premium) and you get a brand new car if yours is totaled for no additional cost. But because Tesla reduced their prices recently things ended up working out for me. Next go around, I'm definitely getting the add-on.