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No spare, no run flat, no running on 3 wheels. Just a can of goo!

As delivery time approaches I worry about the lack of a full sized spare and a place to put it (since it can't fit in the frunk); or, even a doughnut that could fit in the frunk. The car with air suspension can't crawl to the nearest repair center on 3 wheels. I really don't like or want run flats, so that's not upsetting to me; but, relying on a can of tire sealant is extremely worrisome. What does that goo do to the tire, wheel and pressure monitoring system (I assume the Model S has one)? In case of a blow out does Tesla just want us to deal with the night stalkers until an approved tow truck arrives?

"I've driven... for nearly 10 years and have had to use fix-a-flat once"

I, on the other hand, have had two or maybe three (I can't remember) flat tires in the past five years, all due to running over small, sharp objects, such as a small screw.

I have a slow leak in a tire in my Kia. Put some fix-a-flat in it a few weeks ago, but it didn't stop the leak (probably because the tire was only about 5lbs down when I put it in). I just stopped at Sam's Club to ask them to plug it and they absolutely refused to even try to fix a tire with FAF in it.

All this tire drama. When is the Model H (for hovercraft) scheduled for it's debut?

LOL, an Electric Hovercraft... NICE! Icy or wet roads... NO PROBLEM MON! Stopping distance however could still be a problem?

Not to mention bird strikes.

According to the Jalopnik interview, Elon has his own idea for a VTVL electric jet. Wanna bet it looks like the Stark jet in Ironman? ;)

Spare tires are remnants of evolution. Like appendix and tonsils, they once had some useful purpose, now they are just a pain in the ass. In the old days roads where bad, tires were worse.... and no cell phones, so yeah, you could get stranded. Now with high tech materials and steal belts, how often do they actually "blow out"?
Now, for sure, if you're driving a pickup around the middle of no where, you need a spare. But a Tesla, with it's range limitations, will always be close to home, likely in an urban area and no more than 30 minutes from a tow truck. Why waste the space and weight for something you will rarely, if ever, use?
Everything, from mobile phones to airplanes are designed by balancing cost and benefits. Tesla got it right.

PS. I've had a roadster for three years and never needed a spare. I've had many leaks-- the damn thing is a nail magnet-- but never a blowout.

Tonsils, and the appendix, are actually perfectly functional. It has been found they are repositories of 'probacteria', protected enclaves that can replenish damaged internal bacterial colonies (which we depend on to live, and whose members outnumber 'own cells' by 10:1).


I intend to take plenty of road trips with my Model S and many times I'll be in the middle of nowhere. I wouldn't even assume that a tire store in the big city where I live would have a tire in stock should I ruin one beyond repair, and there's not a snowball's chance that a there would be one in a small or medium sized town.

Around town I'll keep the spare at home but when traveling it's a must to carry it with me. One of the selling points of the Model S is that it's a "car", not an "electric car".

And Brian's correct, tonsils and the appendix are functional and provide a valuable service.

Tonsils and adenoids and appendix are vital to the immune system. In Sydney Australia, we get numerous nails. The expense and inconvenience of a tow for a simple DIY job which gets you on your way fast, and to a tyre shop for a repair while you stay mobile makes a spare essential. I blew out a tyre earlier this year in a 3 mile an hour impact with a raised kerb which I failed to see while making a U turn. Took 3 days for the tyre place to get a replacement in. In a major city like Sydney!!!

I will admit that although I think the spare tire is over emphasized when I looked at the donut tire in my Saturn while packing for a long drive this evening I decided to leave it there in the trunk next to my plug kit, air pump and fix-a-flat. The 12 year old thing is untouched and looks brand new but I just can't take it out.

I get what people are saying. I will see how it goes with the Tesla and no spare. Worst case I will buy a little mini spare (donut tire at most $200) and a small hydraulic jack($70) which both will be cheaper than one Tesla full size tire and rim. I'll keep them in the frunk.

Actually what happens if you put the car in jack mode then place a couple boards in the right spot and then take it out of jack mode?

Sudre -- what happens if you put the car in jack mode then place a couple boards...

No one has tried it yet. What should happen is that the tire should lift of the ground but until someone confirms that it's just speculation.

Sudre- That's the reason I started this discussion. I have no problem paying for a doughnut to settle my neurosis. The problem is where to put it and how to secure it. Yes, it will fit in the frunk but I would prefer to put it under the floor panel where the jump seat would go if stored (since I'm not getting one.) Does anyone know if it will fit there? Now, I'm not asking everyone to get a doughnut. Again, I'm just asking where to put it and how to secure it. As far as flats, I drove for 30 years without one (without steal belted radials.) Since using steel belted radials came out, I have had 5 flats.

Tonsils and adenoids provide no unique immune function critical to human health, and no increase in the rate of any disease after their removal. The appendix has indeed been *postulated* to be a reservoir of commensal bacteria useful for re-booting one's bowel flora should one contract cholera or a nasty post-antibiotic C.diff. bacterial infection. In practicality, all of the above ultimately wind up in the garbage can thousands of times a day. For the overwhelming majority of humans, they perform no function meriting their retention once they become noticed (inflammation, pain) which is why surgeons still remove them incidentally if they happen to be in the neighborhood.

Per the Tesla rep, they've tried to put both the 19 and 21 inch tires in the frunk without success. They fit, but the hood doesn't close fully.


Did they say if they tried it without the liner?

Wait, what happened to the Jack Mode option where the car will lift it's tire for you to change it? Was this removed? We can still swap tires that way, can't we? Maybe it's not in the first build of the software for the car, but my understanding is it would eventually.

I agree with Tomas, I think the spare tire is as needed as the spare tire around my midsection. If you need to swap for Winter and Summer driving, then the Jack Mode which lifts 1 wheel at a time while stopped would make this process easier.

The jack setting is still there, but apparently the manual says its for use when lifting it on a flatbed. Seems strange that if that's the only use they should call it jack mode though. So I think the jury is still out on this until someone tries it.

The jack mode wouldn't lift one wheel at a time. At best you would put a jack stand under it, then switch from jack mode to low and two of the wheels would come off the ground as the car pivots on the jack stand as all four wheels are rising up.


He did not mention whether it was plus or minus the liner.

I seem to recall Rod and Barbara describing a jack mode issue with a tow truck on another thread.

Guys, we're just rehashing what's been said already. A 19" or 21" are the SAME overall diameter and will fit in the frunk only if the lining is removed. That's not the question. The question is, will a doughnut fit under the rear floor panel where the jump seat stows and
is there a way of securing it in either location.
P.S. I'm an allergist/immunologist and tonsils DO serve a useful immunologic purpose, but not necessarily unique, even if they become acutely infected. Only when they are chronically infected do they become a problem; and, only under certain circumstances do they need to be removed. For that reason the number of tonsillectomies have been greatly reduced over the past several decades.

Ops. Sorry mate. It seems I was being a typical small-minded American, forgetting that the there is a big world out there.... A world that Tesla is changing too!
My apologizes. And good luck with the tires.

No worries Tomas. Didn't want those shy a few organs to think they were immunocompromised ;) OTOH it's one less thing to get pressed against your spine when flooring the accelerator!

Unless someone finds out otherwise, I'm not putting too much hope in the idea that the suspension will be able to be programmed to lift the one offending tire off the ground.

Granted that I've always changed tires on cars with typical spring suspensions, but the amount I've had to jack up the car was far more than the difference between "low" and "high" points that the Model S suspension can reach. I've neither seen any specs nor rumors that might suggest the active suspension would even be close to capable of lifting a tire fully off the ground.


I'm just going by other cars that have had adjustable height suspension. It's not just the suspension travel between the highest and lowest point. There is also the angle of the car when the suspension lowers the car. What happens in cars that I've had:

1. You raise the suspension to the highest point.

2. You put a jack stand(s) under the car at either one or two points depending on the design.

3. You lower the suspension to it's lowest point.

4. As all four corners go to the lowest point, the body leans to one side and two of the tires lift off the ground. There's really no programming involved other than the raising and lowering that's already there. Some of the lifting is provided by the suspension lowering and some of the lifting is provided by the tilting of the car.

Will the Model S behave this way? I don't know, but there's no technical reason why it shouldn't.

I came up with a great idea:

A expandable rim. It's small enough to fit in the frunk, the tread is floppy, and the tube is prefilled. , you crank it to 19 inches, The tube gets compressed between the denser rubber of the tread and the pressure increases. You now have a 19" spare to get you 50 miles on at lower speeds.

Then I found this 1929 expandable rim patent.

With today's technology, this could be a real solution if someone wanted to make it and use it on all cars not just Tesla to reduce spare tire volume.

For those that say tonsils and adenoids and appendix are vital to the immune system and those that say those provide no function at all, you are both wrong. They are not vital, nor do they have no function at all.

Evolution is clever in a way to "invent" new uses to old structures. That's how we have hands and not flippers and why big toe doesn't do same thing as thumbs even that it has exactly same bones. If those remnants of the old have any function at all they stay.

Walla2 & BYT, your finds are awesome.
Timo, please read my post from yesterday more carefully. I pretty sure that's what I said & in the real world I actually get paid for saying things like that! Enough with Immunology.
Again, does any Teslaholic know if a doughnut will fit under the rear floor panel where the jump seat would go; and, if so, can it be secured in that location or in the frunk?

I think that rear floor panel is too shallow for Model S tires. They are quite wide tires. (and Carmine, if you said what I said then I can't but agree with you :-) Not actually arguing, just pointing out that in world of biology things are rarely just black or white, so going at either extremes is equally stupid).

It seems to me that the solution is a redesign of the liner in the frunk. This really should not be such a big deal. It is not metal stamping dies we are looking at here, just a mold on which the liner material can be shaped which should be easily doable and quickly, with CAD and rapid prototyping equipment. Could probably be done and dusted within a week.
I do know that our local Tesla rep in Sydney did tell me that he is planning on keeping a full size spare in stock for loan to those who want it prior to embarking on a long road trip. Doesn't solve the day to day nails etc. we (Mark E and I) encounter regularly in this town.
I too am medical, but not an allergist. Carmine is 100% correct. I was being simplistic in my last post, but will leave it there.

As far as long trips vs short trips go.
I got stranded a couple of times within 10 miles of my home.
If not for the spare tyre, it would have been way more inconvenient for us to get home. It was a 15mins job vs taw on a flatbed with us taking a cab home, plus living with one car for a couple of days while waiting for a new tyre.
I'd prefer a full size spare as well, so I could deal with fixing/replacing the bad one as time permits, especially the 21" ones that are not exactly a commodity.

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