Maintenence and service costs?

Maintenence and service costs?

To all the current Roadster owners, I am curious from your experience of Tesla ownership, what is the maintenece and service cost annually for your Roadster, especially with batteries and electrical components? I want to get an idea how much it cost for ownership compared to ICE cars, as I was told electric cars are expensive to maintain and service that also includes battery replacement after life expectancy wears out in 5-8 yrs? Your feedback is appreciated!

cytek | 21 marzo 2011

Also are there any anti-theft measure during charging when travelling long distances? Say you are stopping over at a motel by the highway, you plug in the $1000+ cable for over night charging on a parking lot. My concern is won't the cable be easily get stolen as they are very expensive (similar to copper metal thieves ripping valuable metal off buildings, etc.) and also the car can get vandalized, while it is still plugged in unattended on a motel parking lot? What are the security features implemented to prevent this scenario on long road trips in an unfamiliar area?

RonaldA | 22 marzo 2011

Hmm, security for the cable I suppose is an issue athough at this point most charging stations are in fairly upscale fascilities (hotels etc) and security cameras are available. The car itself has an alarm system and I doubt your average thief will have a clue about how to start it or even what it is. The car can be code locked also to prevent starting without the security code or the key. I hope that helps. Vandelism is always a concern, nothing to stop it or an other unforseen criminal acts (hit and run etc.)

Brian H | 23 marzo 2011

EV thieves are unlikely to be "average"; more likely specialists with thorough knowledge of their targets. Don't know what kind of "black market" there is for cables or cars yet, though.

Timo | 23 marzo 2011

Car controlled by computer can be made well protected against theft, cables are difficult to protect, but have low value. $1000+ is more like $50 in reality, maybe less. Some copper cable, a bit of electronics and connectors at both ends. It is not high-tech part.

Maybe car should have build-in security camera, kind of like those rear-view cameras that monitor cable-area. I bet there is enough computer power inside the car to collect wide-angle real-time video from cameras as long as recharging lasts.

VolkerP | 24 marzo 2011

Tesla sells that "cable" for $1200. It is called the universal mobile connector. Needed to plug into high amp sockets away from home. No matter what the material cost, an item worth $1200 should be theft protected when your car charges and is not under attention.

Timo | 24 marzo 2011

There is a lot of air in that price. The spare mobile connector costs $600 even that it is basically just a cable with connectors at both ends. Actual mobile connector isn't much more complex than that is. Theft is unlikely because it would not have much resale value (if at all). Insurance however should cover loss of the cable if that gets stolen (more a case of vandalism, same person that steals your cable could as well trash your car just for "fun").

Douglas3 | 24 marzo 2011

Actually, the mobile connector is more complex than the spare connector.

It has a "lump" in the middle with circuitry to signal the car how much power to draw, and contactors to isolate the car until it signals it is safe to transfer power.

Timo | 24 marzo 2011

...isn't much more....

David70 | 24 marzo 2011

I'd assume vandalism would be more of an issue with respect to cable theft. What person who had spent so much buying a Tesla would trust anyone but a dealer for purchase of a cable? How would a thief fence the goods?

qwk | 25 marzo 2011


The mobile connector replacement IS $1200, even if it costs less that that to produce it.

With your logic, a model S is a $40k car(cost of materials), even though Tesla charges $57k+.

Price of materials means nothing. Replacement cost is everything.

Timo | 26 marzo 2011

Yes, but value for the thief is minuscule. It doesn't have any resale value, only value of the materials. That is why risk of theft is tiny. Insurance need to cover loss of that obviously, but any theft-proof locks are not necessary.

Something like laptop cable locking in car-end of the cable would be enough to discourage any "opportunity thief". It would also be easy to do in car and the cable connector, and because it is standard, purchasing one could be left for owner of the car (get whatever model you want).

qwk | 26 marzo 2011

People steal copper wire all the time. Why do you think that is?

It certainly isn't because it is worthless. A free $50 is still a free $50 to a thief.

You must live a sheltered life in a cave without crime.

Sudre | 26 marzo 2011

There is no point for a lock in my opinion. People do steal copper all the time and they do not steal the entire light post or equipment with the wire. They chop off the wire and pull it out between light fixtures and go cash it in leaving the light posts in place while the circuit is on. So while you/we spend money on locks and fancy gadgets the wire portion on the cord is cut and stolen while the plug is still stuck nicely locked in the car or wall socket.

Luckily the wire for this thing is only about $3 to $5 a foot new. The cash in value would probably only be around 30 cents a foot. Not worth the time and effort for the thief.... hopefully.

Timo | 26 marzo 2011

@qwk, you must live in dark-ages anarchy without people having moral codes. I suggest moving to some civilized country.

In here people use block-heaters all of time. No stealing whatsoever.

qwk | 26 marzo 2011

I'm just very realistic. The US is probably very different to where you live I'm guessing.

There is a world of difference in a 120v extension cord and a Tesla mc240.

Jeff | 27 marzo 2011

I have had my Tesla for over 2 years and can tell you that service and maintenance have not cost me a dime yet. Still covered under warranty for everything. Replaced my rear tires, but that is all. Since I have an early car, there have been lots of tweaks and minor issues, but nothing that interfered with daily driving. I had a few issues right after receiving the car like non-functioning door latch, leaking rear shocks, poorly aligned headlights, malfinctioning tire pressure sensors, music system problems and a few squeaks and rattles, but very little since then. Recently had some leaking tubing from the battery cooling system replaced, new bolts for my hood, and some rattles in the cabin tightened.

As far as security for the charging cable, any reason you can't park on top of it? Would the weight of the car ruin anything? That would certainly discourage thieves from casually walking away with it. Alternatively if the cable came with a large cut-resistant tab somewhere in the middle, you could park on the tab and immobilize the cable.

cytek | 4 aprile 2011

Thanks for sharing your feedback and experience with your Tesla ownership. I assume that the EV car is cheaper to maintain compared to ICE cars, except for the $10k cost to replace new battery after its lifespan ends in 7-10 years.

Sudre | 4 aprile 2011

Well if the cost is only 10K for that battery then it's a heck of a lot cheaper than the $15-20K in gas.... if gas prices keep going up like they are.

MaryBeth | 1 maggio 2011

Put a bar code on the unit with a short text stating "This unit has anti-theft tracking protection, YOU WILL BE FOUND!"

scubaguy | 5 maggio 2011

Happy Customer ! Owner of #88 Signature Series , the car was in storage charge for 2+ months in my garage, when I decided to get it ready for (finally) Spring , it showed a driving range of 40 miles. I unplug and replug the charger , a warning message came up asking me to contact service. I emailed the info to Tesla , they referred me to the NorthEast Regional center in NYC .
The same day Tesla sent a customized trailer to DE ( 140 miles from NYC) towed my car to NYC.
The morning of the next day, they made the diagnosis of Battery failure and notify me that they will replace the battery package for free, install a few new parts for the A/C fan to optimize it and did a "ShowRoom Detailing" job to my car before shipping it back in the special trailer AND making sure it arrives on a sunny day so that I can enjoy it immediately !
The NorthEastTeam and Noe Mejia ( service manager) deserve a thumb up ! what a service !
The 200 + owners of the NorthEast are lucky to have such a dedicated and efficient team to back them up when needed.
Thank you Tesla .

Brian H | 6 maggio 2011

Quite a tale! Sounds like they almost enjoyed having the chance to show off their snappy response and skills.

Vawlkus | 6 maggio 2011

Well, with Tesla's not needing much maintenance, I bet they don't get to show off much : D