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The Tesla difference

I've had my Tesla for almost two months. There have been a few bumps in the road (pun intended), but with each interaction Tesla has made it right and I walked away satisfied. To me, these experiences have made this awesome car 10 times better. To drive this point home (you got it, pun intended), a study in contrast....

My car was one of the affected cars in the recent partial recall. Tesla called me, setup a time, picked up my car, took it to the service center, repaired the problem, returned the car to my house and plugged it in. Before leaving they called, confirmed the return and wished me a wonderful day. No charge.

In contrast, my ICE was having an issue. I took it to the shop where I was informed I would have to leave it overnight. I was not offered a ride home and had to make arrangements. The following day they called and raised the price by 35% and informed me it would be another day. On day 3 I had to make arrangements for a ride to retrieve the car. When I got in the glove box was hanging open. Strange, why were they in the glove box? I shut the glove box but it popped back open. Great, not only did they break it, but they didn't tell me and now I either have to arrange for somebody to pick me up and leave it for them to fix or just deal with a broken glove box. After arguing with them for 15 minutes about why they need to fix what they broke, I left the car and arranged for a ride home. 3 days later they call and tell me the glove box is fixed. Again, I arrange for a ride to go pick up the car. I climb in and see that the glove box is indeed fixed. Yay! I start the car and roll down the window. The window does not move. I take a closer look to find that the window tint is scratched and the door panel is not properly affixed. I'm guessing somebody slammed the door hard resulting in the window falling down inside the door. They used some tool to pull it up scratching the tint and breaking loose the door panel. They got the window up and left it that way, off the track and not functioning. Again, I have to figure out how to get home and argue with them about why they need to fix what they clearly broke.

End result? I'm left with annoyed friends who are sick and tired of driving me back and forth from the shop, an ICE I'm afraid to take for repairs and a very deep appreciation for Tesla.

Wow. Please share the dealership's name if only as a warning to others.

Speaking of the "Tesla Difference" as a person who owns a large ISP and is fully aware of the security state we now live under, can we get assurance in writing that our movements, conversations and other metadata during operaton of the Tesla S vehicle will not be "dumped" to the intellegence services of the United States? Do the US government (or others) have the right to this data? Our company has heard rumors that the data collected by vehicles built past 2005 have capabilites beyond the black boxes by the mandate of Federal law. Is this the case? Frankly I am not thrilled with my movements being tracked by my car and feel we should have the ability to overide the GPS geographic data. Is every body comfortable with this possibility? No written denial no order from us. I'll go back to a 87 Ferrari which I damn well am sure has no tracking devices.

Bob, your car and the phone in your pocket can both be used to track you to a few yards via triangulation and packet signal timing. Its a requirement for 911 calls from cell phones.


The difference is in why they do it.

Profit is job 1 at other automakers. Not evil, but not a mission.

Showing the world a better way is what drives Tesla. Profit is necessary, but it is not the primary aim.

They took the road less traveled. And that has made all the difference.


I have to say that although I agree in principle, jbunn makes a great point.

Do you NOT have cell phone service. We know that every provider not only turns over the records of each conversation, but the geolocation data.

So you don't have cell service? You know that all ISP data is tracked, catalogued and collected by the alphabet soup of agencies, right?

You still surf the net, send emails etc?

I'd be happy to see all this loose data allowed to evaporate and not be vacuumed up, but until we have some push-back by our Reps, you are allowing your location, preferences, private conversations and circle of acquaintances to be captured already.

The above discussion should be a different thread, it takes away from the OP's very good post. Just a thought.

We are working on securing our customers searches using non trackable engines. Good progress on that front. We are implemeting secure protocals for e-mail. Even our iphone has an app for secure communications. I just do not like to have my cars electronics working for the wrong side.

Bob, your secure iPhone app does not get around this issue. Google FCC Standards for E911. Quoted from Wiki...

"Wireless network operators must provide the latitude and longitude of callers within 300 meters, within six minutes of a request by a PSAP.[5] Accuracy rates must meet FCC standards on average within any given participating PSAP service area by September 11, 2012 (deferred from September 11, 2008).[6]

Location information is not only transmitted to the call center for the purpose of sending emergency services to the scene of the incident, it is used by the wireless network operator to determine to which PSAP to route the call."

In reality, in an urban area the cell network can track you with much greater accuracy. Down to a few yards. No protocol overlay can defeat the underlying technology. And you don't need to be making a call. You just need to have the phone on. I've worked with cellular switch data for a couple major carriers. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news.

Afaik any travel data is anonymized before storage on TM servers. But even if not, in todays' world, the US and their FISA system seems to get any data they want, even from citizens of friendly countries.

@jbunn +1 excellent point!

The tracking topic is good stuff, but no one will find it under this thread title. Please repost under a good title for those interested.

Would also do a good turn to the OP.

+1 Mark K

I can appreciate the OP's story because my ICE was in the shop 6 different times for a total of 6 weeks out of 6 months while I was waiting for my Model S.

I was bumming rides all the time because their shuttle ran during limited hours.

Most of the work was on problems they created while working on the original problem. But, they gave me a nice discount on the new parts. Pfft...

I owned my last ICE for 14 years and service in the begining was OK, but not great. Trouble started when the super dealer owning all brands took over the local auto row. Prices went up, at best 2 of 3 items were done, unrelated items broke in the car ( e.g. 60k service & smog check and the side mirror adjustment button was destroyed, like hit by a hammer... ). Waiting at the dealer for a ride to the rental car, sitting at the rental shop for 2 hrs to finally get a car. Get a call the car is ready and arriving at the dealer the car wasn't even moved to the shop and nothing done... and on and on and on. In my limited experience if the super dealers loose their job it is self inflicted and well deserved.


Felt your pain with your ICE experience.

Steve Jobs says "Think Different" to market Apple products. Elon Musk uses "Do Different" to change the automobile world.

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