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Quality

For the most part I am inspired by all the chat about the Model S. I love the Toyota Corolla comparison on TCO. I feel like I've put a deposit down on something that will end up being worth more after I buy it then before. People will be sending me unsolicited offers via PayPal, or chasing me down the street to try to buy my car. Yippee!

But there is one thing that concerns me, and that's quality. I'm talking fit and finish. The sound of the door when you close it. A smooth, rattle-free ride. The attention to those little details, like moldings and switches. Companies like Mercedes and BMW have refining their products for decades.

Will Tesla be able to achieve this kind of quality in their first production luxury sedan?

I look forward to reading your comments.

There are a few factors to consider. Keep in mind Tesla is a "new" company trying to make a name for itself. Like previous auto manufacturers that entered the US market, the initial quality was fantastic. Heck, back when Toyota and Honda came to the US, their cars made domestic cars look lousy in terms of quality.
As a start out company you want to impress the early adopters.
In my opinion, I think Musk is going to take the company in the "Apple" business model- make high quality goods at a premium price. There will always be a market for that.

I feel the model S is already going in that direction simply from the frame and panels (using aluminum instead of steel).

As far as painting, Musk is a "stickler for paint" to quote an article I read today, so I doubt that there will be missed sections of the car (a few years ago I bought a new car made by Ford where there were paint spots missed), so I expect the CEO of Tesla to be mighty POed if a Tesla makes it to a dealer with a missed painting spot.

As for the interior, I would prefer certain features, but in some respects even all Ferraris don't have those features (If leather, I would prefer the harder leather that is dyed all the way through verses the softer spray tanned leather)

I would still love a none painted version of the Model S, just bring out the dulled brush metal shine in the aluminum!

Having prototyped a few things - the tendency is always to do what is right and best the first time around, and then cheat and sneak as much as possible with subsequent iterations. Feel the heft and metal parts of the first Lumix cameras - now they are all plastic! Even apple computers, the iMac in particular, uses less and less metal - which is great from a profit improvement and even environmental point of view - but something is sacrificed in durability with the next models. I believe as the first mass produced luxury EV, the first S Models will likely have a few points of quality, durability and the like that will get 'value engineered' out as the company seeks to refine the designs, increase profits, lower costs and the like...

Also - something that will give the model S some real collector appeal (and appreciation) - if taken good care of.

http://www.spacex.com/falcon9.php - and don't forget what other industries the CEO is involved in.

An unpainted Model S wouldn't shine like aluminum, it's body shell panels on the outside are carbon fiber, it's the frame that's aluminum.

I think the frame is steel and panels are aluminum. Carbon fiber is light but it is also expensive, and Model S can't cost that much to build as Roadster does.

Aluminum frame AND body panels.

@ qwk, yes, that is what I was told when I enquired prior to reserving a Model S...simply can't do a CF exterior without a major increase in mfg cost...hence, aluminum.


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