HomeGuideTesla Employee's Test Ride Ends in Disaster: Customer's Model S Plaid Totaled

Tesla Employee’s Test Ride Ends in Disaster: Customer’s Model S Plaid Totaled

What will you do if you buy something you wanted for so long, just to hear that you will never see that thing again?

That could be disheartening right? It is more hurting if you get to know that your car is totaled where it is in the safest hands. The Tesla dealership.

Least expected right?

Tesla never fails to amaze and make headlines, and looks like they are destined for this to happen to them! Either Tesla makes news or news finds Tesla or Elon!

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Jeff from Texas bought Model S Plaid but had to bid goodbye to his EV just after a few thousand miles on it. He did get a clone version of his Tesla as a replacement but had to go through a lot of trouble.

Find everything that happened here!

Tesla Model S Totaled

Tesla Model S Totaled: What Happened?

After leaving his Tesla Model S Plaid at a Service appointment, the owner’s $155,000 vehicle was tragically totaled only days later. In search of answers and justice, he is now on a mission to uncover the truth.

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On August 24, Jeff dropped off his Model S Plaid at the Plano, Texas, Tesla Service Center with only a few thousand miles on it. Little did he know that five days later, he would receive an unexpected call from an employee there: “We have some bad news – your car was totaled.”

At first, Jeff did not pay much attention to it and thought it was all just a silly joke. But turns out the news was true.

When Jeff returned to the Service Center the following day, Wednesday, August 31st, he soon discovered his Model S Plaid in the parking lot with its rear passenger door destroyed. Sadly, visibility into the vehicle was blocked by many of its airbags that had been deployed from impact.

With all of the airbags deployed, he was unable to peep inside. The service tech reportedly didn’t give way at a stop sign; another car checked into the intersection and struck his Tesla Model S head-on. From there, matters worsened even further.

Just two blocks from the Service Center on Democracy Drive in Plano, a car had collided with the EV being tested for repairs. Apparently, all maintenance things were done, and a Tesla employee was taking it out for a check spin to guarantee everything worked properly.

Following the incident, Tesla proposed to offer a replacement Model S Plaid that was available at another Texas showroom. Yet soon afterwards they took back this offer, saying that it would likely be facilitated through insurance, with an estimated wait time of three weeks before the settlement could reach Jeff.

The Legal Report of the Accident

Although the automobile is a total loss, according to Tesla, it is essential to ascertain who was accountable for the accident before any other elements come into play.

Who owns the car and who drove it are irrelevant facts until liability has been determined, said legal experts.

According to the police report from the Plano City Police Department, it was found that Jeff’s Tesla Service Center employee was responsible for the accident. Speaking with the said employee who was driving at the time of the collision, Jeff confirmed that he even confessed that he was at fault.

According to the report, the Tesla employee driving Jeff’s Model S was formally cited for violating their right-of-way at a stop sign. The police report states:

“UNIT 1 WAS STOPPED AT A STOP SIGN IN LANE 2 E/B DEMOCRACY DRIVE FOR PARKWOOD BLVD. UNIT 1 THEN PROCEEDED THROUGH THE INTERSECTION. UNIT 2 WAS N/B PARKWOOD BLVD IN THE RIGHT LANE. DUE TO UNIT 1 FAILING TO YIELD RIGHT OF WAY AT A STOP SIGN TO UNIT 2, THE FRONT END OF UNIT 2 STRUCK THE RIGHT BACK QUARTER OF UNIT 1.”

Tesla Model S Plaid Totaled

What Did Tesla Say?

Jeff has been waiting for an answer from Tesla regarding the accident, with a response promised within three weeks. It is possible that Tesla’s reluctance to speak right away was driven by their need to investigate who exactly is liable for the incident.

It could be argued that their employee driving at the time of the collision may not have caused it given he had no control over being “t-boned” during his transit through an intersection.

Jeff explained that Tesla has yet to provide either a loaner or an alternate vehicle, meaning his circumstances are especially complicated.

But Tesla kept mum for a long time but finally gave in to offer a replacement Tesla Model S, but the complications stayed as Jeff expects reimbursements from Tesla.

What to Expect?

The situation is definitely strange but the loyal customers of Tesla would expect a better resolution to their problems. Especially, when they are not the ones at fault.

Tesla refused to comment or say anything about the incident initially. They did offer a replacement Model S Plaid finally, but the agony doesn’t end there.

Much to Jeff’s surprise and frustration, Tesla debited an additional $137,000 from his account upon his collecting the vehicle. Without any explanations or heads-up why they were taking the amount away from his account?

Jeff was left with a hefty bill of $252,000 for an EV he could acquire for just $160k. It surely is unbelievable as to why would you trouble yourself and pay as much as double to get the same car you had all fine and running.

He had already paid Tesla around $50,000 to release the loan on his prior car. He called it “This has been the most dysfunctional process I’ve ever seen in my(his) life.”

Youtuber @russellcopeland117 said:

“messy but at least they are getting it cleared up… Unusual situation is going to cause unusual path to resolution. Probably do need to have a small handful of empowered situation handlers at Tesla for these rare but weird situations.”

There is no news so far if everything is settled now or not, but what should happen in such conditions? What will you do if your Tesla was totaled or a similar incident happened to cause it to be totaled?

You could go about seeking insurance help, but that might be counted as a claim, while some even could come out and put the claim on Tesla to cover the losses.

Since in this case, Jeff had Tesla insurance, there was not much he could do and in some way was at Tesla’s mercy to get things solved. However, calling up the insurance provider to see and fix the situation in case there is a delay or problem with a replacement for no transportation.

We believe Tesla, too was concerned about getting the insurance sorted as another car was involved in the accident with Model S Plaid.

Bottomline

This customer’s $150K car was totaled through no fault of their own, and Tesla should provide them with a loaner Model S or luxury rental reimbursement until they get another vehicle.

To apologize for the inconvenience, they could also offer complimentary service, Supercharging, or other perks to compensate. However, nothing of such sort was done by Tesla for Jeff.

What is amazing though is the fact that despite this negative experience Jeff still stands as a pretty robust supporter of Tesla EVs.

Jeff is pleased with the replacement Model S Plaid but remains disappointed in how chaotic and disorganized the whole process has been.

Tesla could easily boost its goodwill by offering loaners and resolving such issues faster. It doesn’t cost much in the big picture and would provide more confidence to Tesla customers while keeping negative PR away.

Oh, wait Tesla and PR?

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Purnima Rathi
Purnima Rathi
An ardent writer putting life into words worth your time.

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