Chinese Model S Owner Smashes His Car In Protest Of “Tesla’s Arrogance”


Tesla Model S In China Takes Some Damage From The Hands Of Its Owner

Tesla Model S In China Takes Some Damage From The Hands Of Its Owner (Image via WSJ/Yu Xinquan)

Ever been so mad that you just want to destroy something?  How about your new $170,000 USD (1 million yuan) car?

It has been no secret that some delays over regional deliveries of the Model S in China have led to some high profile protests by future Tesla owners both before and after the keys to the first all-electric sedans where handed out in Beijing in April.

However, Wall Street Journal’s report on what Yu Xinquan, an e-commerce entrepreneur who lives in northern Chinese region of Inner Mongolia did upon taking delivery seems a bit extreme.

So...Not All That Happen Then? (Image via WSJ/Yu Xinquan)

So…Not All That Happen Then? (Image via WSJ/Yu Xinquan)

Moments after taking delivery of his new Model S, Mr. Xinquan then took a wrench to town on his new car’s windshield!  (We note he was careful to not do too much monetary damage to his car outside of the obvious)

“It’s a protest against the company.  Tesla’s arrogance made me angry.”

It was actually Yu Xinquan who spearheaded earlier demonstrations against Tesla for failing to deliver on time.

The group and Mr. Xinquan eventually met with Tesla Motors CEO, and Mr. Musk said after the meeting that “I think we’ve resolved that” – apparently not so much.

The angry Model S owner said that in early April he was promised to finally receive the car within six weeks, along with some other perks – a limited edition plate and free installation of EVSE equipment.  During his video of the incident, which as now gone viral in China, he said,“the company hasn’t delivered”.

Yu’s Model S was originally ordered in October and he had hoped to be one of the first deliveries in China, but when the first deliveries were happening in late April he found out that his Model S had not even entered production.

Tesla replied to his inquiries as to why his car had not yet been built that production would be not be on a “first come, first served” basis outside of Beijing and Shanghai, because of  lack of Tesla service centers across the rest of the country.  A fact which Yu says was not disclosed to him when he put down his down payment of 250,000 yuan in October of last year.

Wall Street Journal reports that when Tesla further contacted him later to say that his custom-ordered Model S had been seized by Chinese customs “because the record number on the customs declaration statement didn’t match the car’s vehicle identify number” and that his order was further delayed because of the error he became more angry.

Tesla suggested he take delivery of a showroom display car, or wait for another US-made car to be built and shipped to China.  By looking at the end result of the transaction, we can assume that solution was not entirely pleasing to Mr. Xinquan.

“I feel like I just married a woman who has been married before.”

WSJ says that China’s social media reaction has been mixed.


Category: Tesla

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67 responses to "Chinese Model S Owner Smashes His Car In Protest Of “Tesla’s Arrogance”"
  1. Anon says:

    Yu– take some meds, i.e., boil a lizard on a stick. It might help calm you down. 😉

    1. See Through says:

      Tesla will pay for the failed promises in China.

      1. Big Solar says:

        ole captain obvious

      2. Get a grip says:

        Sounds like a cheap stunt like what you would pull See Through to show your irrational hatred for Tesla.

        1. Neal says:

          It seems as though our BIG EGO CHINESE ENTREPRENEUR may have done this as negative publicity stunt toward Tesla or it may have been for a positive publicity stunt to create the BUZZ for his ecommerce business to create the viral videos in China that sounds like it as successful. Regardless of the reasoning why – we all have to take into consideration of the countless new technilogical advances Mr Musk is forefathering not to mention the good for the Earth that it is generating that it will take some time, painstaking engineering and PATIENCE to get this all into effect. We must remember when Henry Ford took the Model T to the first production vehicle the gas was not available on every corner as it is today. As a matter of fact it was sold in mason jars in mom and pop drug stores. I believe Mr Musk Is pioneering these advancements out of the goodness of his own heart and for Hhumanity

    2. Unplugged says:

      Yu sounds like a self-entitled spoiled brat. Waa, waa, waa. I didn’t get my car like they promised. I’m going to break my toy because I’m so mad. Tesla are big meanies.

    3. Neal says:

      t seems as though our BIG EGO CHINESE ENTREPRENEUR may have done this as negative publicity stunt toward Tesla or it may have been for a positive publicity stunt to create the BUZZ for his ecommerce business to create the viral videos in China that sounds like it was successful. Regardless of the reasoning why – we all have to take into consideration of the countless new technilogical advances Mr Musk is forefathering not to mention the good for the Earth that it is generating and that it will take some time, painstaking engineering and PATIENCE to get this all into effect. We must remember when Henry Ford took the Model T to production the gas was not available on every corner like it is now! As a mater of fact it was sold in mason jars at mom and pop drug stores!!! I believe Mr Musk is doing all of this out of the goodness of his own heart as well as for Humanity as proven by the sharing of the patents and power sharing to charge all other makes of EVs . In my opinion Mr Elon Musk as well as Tesla will become a household name and I am placing my vote to nominate Mr Elon Musk for the NOBEL PEACE PRIZE.

  2. Gibber says:

    As Buggs Bunny once said… “What a maroon”

  3. Chris O says:

    There seems to be no pleasing this guy…maybe his only mission is generating as much negative publicity for Tesla as possible. No doubt that would suit some agendas.

    OTOH smashing a windscreen for having to wait a bit longer than expected should to most people only prove that the guy needs his head examined.

    1. Grendal says:

      It’s a cultural thing.

    2. Leptoquark says:

      It does sound like he wants to generate as much buzz about himself as about Tesla. Why smash your own car?

  4. vadik says:

    You have to deliver on your promises. Period.

    1. Ski says:

      True. But this reaction solves nothing and show he lacks the ability to address his frustration in a professional and adult way

  5. offib says:

    Well, if he’s displeased with it, why not give it to me, perhaps? Please?

  6. Alonso Perez says:

    This is one of those situations where being removed from the cultural context leads people to reach bad conclusions.

    There are some things that need to be kept in mind.

    First of all, Tesla needs China more than China needs Tesla, so whatever issues there are particular to that market need to be fixed, whether they seem unreasonable or not.

    Second, Musk has gotten used to being late (or promising too optimistically if you wish). Those of us who follow him sympathize with this because we understand the whole story. We get the depth of the near miracle he has pulled off not only with Tesla but with Space X. We understand the significance of the achievements and the impact it is having on other companies.

    So a few weeks or months lateness is nothing in the greater scheme of things, if you are a Musk fan.

    But the further out Tesla goes from its fan base, the less these delays will be understood. China is pretty far indeed.

    And that, by itself is just one problem. Layer on top of that two more. Tesla showed delivery preference for customers in big cities over those from lesser towns. There was logic to it, but still, it bears mentioning that this practice plays to typical resentment people from smaller or less important cities have against those from big ones.

    This is true almost everywhere, but in China it is accentuated for historical reasons.

    The next problem is that “face”, as in “saving face” is very important in China. It creates a lot of stress in China to look like you are being taken advantage of by someone or some company. It creates stress everywhere but more so in China, where buying a car is still a big event, and where your choice of brand leaves you exposed more than it would in the US.

    I’m not saying the guy acted sensibly. I am saying that this is a logical outcome once you take into account the environment there such as it is, rather than as Tesla would wish it would be.

    1. tesla girl says:

      Best and most complete explication I’ve heard so far. Very valuable insights. Thank you for sharing.

    2. ModernMarvelFan says:

      Finally a good comment by someone with a cool head and lots of experience dealing with cultures different from us…

      Tesla fans will never understand this.

  7. CherylG says:

    Tesla late with something? No, never.

    Given Tesla’s dismal track record of missing dates for battery swap stations, Model X, Gigafactory construction, 10,000 annual sales in Germany, etc, what did this person expect? An honest delivery date that the company stood behind?

    1. Big Solar says:

      yeah, poor chinese guy, boo hoo hoo, wah wah blah blah blah

    2. Sivad says:

      Says Cheryl the dealer troll. Don’t you ever get tired of wasting your time posting on these EV sites?

      1. See Through says:

        Isn’t it time for your Musk prayers? Are you doing that 5 times per day?

        1. Rick Danger says:

          Hey See Through, you and Cheryl tired of sticking the pins in your Musk doll today?

          1. Omar Sultan says:


    3. Mark H says:

      The first successful US automotive company since Chrysler steps up to build a $5,000,000,000 (did I get enough zeros?)factory capable of producing a quantity of batteries equal to all the cell phone, table, PC, and electric car globally and do it in under 5 years and you want to blast them for altering their ground breaking by a couple of months. Really??

    4. krona2k says:

      Put a sock in it troll.

      1. Rick Danger says:

        Put two socks… in case one falls out.

  8. no comment says:

    this is one of those “you can’t please all the people all the time…” stories; other than its minor conversational value, it does not seem like a story that is of much importance. it is not unheard of that a company can plan entry into a new market only to find that it takes longer than expected to actually implement the plan.

    1. Big Solar says:

      Sensible view.

  9. Spec9 says:

    Tesla should delay some more cars so they can profit on fixing their windshields later.

    1. See Through says:

      It will be ‘warranty repair’. Damn stone chip keeps falling on the windshield everyday.

      1. JakeY says:

        He posted everything on a blog so there’s plenty of evidence to deny any warranty claim. Also accidental damage like rocks hitting a windshield typically isn’t covered unless the damage is related to defects in the windshield.

  10. Taser54 says:

    I don’t understand the Chinese man’s actions. He should have acted better. Of course, so should Tesla.

  11. Foo says:

    Wait until Mr. Yu finds out that replacement windshields are back-ordered eight months.

    1. Rick Danger says:


    2. Scott says:


    3. El Prasito says:


  12. JakeY says:

    From my reading, this guy was the only one not satisfied with Elon’s apology for the delay. And the funny thing is he still took delivery of the car. If it was any other car he probably would have just cancelled the order.

    That shows the strong appeal of the car.

    1. Grendal says:

      There is a big cultural background in the man’s behavior. Some of the things Elon said would go over fine with Americans such as “we’re taking extra time to make sure the car is perfect.” That excuse/explanation doesn’t work with someone from China.

      1. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

        Yeah, like a Chinese manufacturer would take 1 extra second for quality control LOL…

      2. tesla girl says:

        I agree that cultural differences are at play here. I hope that these issues can be resolved on future delivers.

    2. See Through says:

      Once the car is built, you can’t backout. I don’t think he had an option to cancel without losing whatever money he gave to Tesla already/

      1. JakeY says:

        When Elon was issuing his apology, the car wasn’t even in production yet. Every person at that event could have cancelled their car on the spot.

        And given Elon was there personally, even if it was in production, do you seriously believe any customer that brought up cancelling would not have their request satisfied?

  13. Ocean Railroader says:

    Tesla is in a somewhat dangerous situation were they keep promising about coming out with so and so and at so and so date but they are always really late. As of now Tesla is lucky that the other car makers that are capable of making a EV that could slaughter Tesla over night don’t want to make a cool EV in that they are stuck in the 1960’s.

    A example of Tesla being lucky with the other car makers is that when BMW made their i3 electric car they only have it a 80 mile battery range. While the car coasted double the price of a Nissan leaf with the same range. If BMW had used $5000 dollars extra $22,000 mark up over the leaf to double battery size then they would have a com pant 150 mile range EV. So Tesla got lucky this time in till someone else makes a try at it.

    As for this guy in China I think he over reacted or he had a agenda.

    As for people in China I could see why they would be worried about not getting their cars on time. In that China has a lot of cases were companies will take someone’s money for a product and never give them their product while they take their money. So I do understand why the Chinese buyers would be far more worried then in the US.

    1. Grendal says:

      Major manufacturers have delays too. Tesla is a relatively new company and they are doing the best that they can. There can be some improvement but there is still demand for timetables from the company. The easiest way to deal with it is assume that there will be delays in anything that Tesla says and then you won’t feel so bad.

      1. Alonso Perez says:

        But major manufacturers don’t take reservations years ahead of time. That’s the rub.

        The easiest way to deal with this varies according to culture. The Japanese had to change a lot about how they built and sold cars in order to enter the US market back in the 1960’s and 1970’s.

        You want China, you have to act China.

        1. tesla girl says:

          You are right, if we want to do business with China we have to respect the Chinese culture and be adaptive.

    2. Get a grip says:

      Really, Tesla is lucky that no big OEM hasn’t crushed them yet???

      I think you have it backwards, Tesla is leading the pack on the most capable EVs and will continue to do so for some time as they are the only ones with the guts to go all out.

    3. See Through says:

      Ocean railrooad,
      BMW i3 doesn’t cost double of Nissan Leaf.
      Without rebates ( $7500 tax credit + $2500 California rebate), Nissan Leaf is $31K, BMW i3 is $41K. So, it is 33% more.
      Including rebates, it is 50% more, but still around 30K, comparable to good quality gas cars.

      80 mile electric range is pretty good to cover 95% of total mileage of the car. Everyone knows, for more mileage, REX approach is more suitable and efficient than putting more and more of battery packs. Only Tesla can’t understand that. Because they are geniuses, way ahead of us humans.

    4. danwat1234 says:

      i3 (Rex) has a range extender.

    5. Ryan H says:

      Maybe the reason other auto manufacturers haven’t been able to do what Tesla has done is because it isn’t that easy… I don’t think there is any imminent threat for any of them to make a longer range EV.

  14. Mr. Xinquan knows how to get headlines. So does Mr. Musk. One of them builds things. The other trashes them in a fit of pique.

    Whose company would you invest in?

    I hope Mr. Xinquan doesn’t need to raise funds any time soon.

  15. lzl says:

    When I read the title I was expecting a literally smashed up car….oh well, Mr Yu wants to throw his tantrum…waaaa….

  16. Brandon says:

    O he seems vedy angwy

    i’ll take the car

  17. Cavaron says:

    I wonder… how is the price of a Tesla windshield compared to several million klicks on youtube and the pr-effect for this guy?

    1. Cavaron says:

      I also wonder what the feminist movement would say about his comparison of a car that didn’t come as promised to a woman which didn’t come “as promised”. And whould he have treated the woman in the same way?

  18. Brandon says:

    Thats not covered under warranty

  19. DaveMart says:

    It looks as though ‘The Karate Kid’ is popular in China too.
    Slow down, Mr Myagi!

  20. Anon says:

    I wouldn’t reward such destructive behavior. China’s isolated village days are over; time for an uplifting lesson in global business ethics / practices– take the car back, and fully refund the “customer” his money for gross malignment to the brand and willful damage to his own vehicle.

    Boom, done.

  21. islandboy says:

    I really don’t under stand what people here are referring to as “culture”. I have personal experience of buying products made in China that turned out to be less than what I bargained for but, could have been that much better, if they had just spent a little more time/effort/money to make a better product. Is it more important that you deliver “something”, regardless of the quality rather than delay it to make it better?

    In one case I bought a suposedly “premium” product from a US company, manufactured at “their” facility in China. The product arrives at my tropical island with no rust protection on the screws used to assemble the electronics. Needless to say, I’m not satisfied with the product but, these SOBs already have my money and any attempt to sort this out is going to cost me. I also have bought Chinese manufactured products from established non-Chinese brands that, have worked out okay. As a result, I find it very difficult to believe that Chinese stuff is not going to fall apart the first chance it gets.

    So, this Chinese guy with enough money to buy a $170,000 USD car, throws a tantrum when he finnally gets his car after lengthly delays? Would he rather have got his car on time and had it fall apart the next day or got his car with absolutely no support infrastructure in place? I don’t get it. If delivering on time was so important, why didn’t he just buy a S Class instead?

  22. PJS says:

    Sounds just like about 1/2 the folks on the Tesla forums – he just acted it out…

  23. Disjunction says:

    Am Italian guy did exactly the same a few months ago to his BMW at a motor show in Germany to protest the manufacturers inability to fix the various issues he had with the car. Seems he created a following in the wealthy nutters class. Anyway, moving on….

  24. qwerty says:

    lol, what a potsticker.

  25. ModernMarvelFan says:

    People don’t get this…

    In China, those can spend $170K on something are usually a member of the “elite” class who used to get “their ways”. They are no different than a bunch of spoiled babies who gets whatever they want how they want it. Typically, everyone else always cater to what they want. But when Tesla doesn’t deliver the car as promised (after the deposit is accepted), the buyer is just acting out b/c he feels he is NOT taken serious as a “special buyer”. That is why he is mad.

    Especially since he is used to be made special. Tesla is just treating everyone as the same…

  26. Lensman says:

    ModernMarvelFan is the first to point to part of what’s actually underlying this public display of anger, but even he’s not telling the whole story.

    China has “lost face” at being unable to sell cars in the USA and Europe. The reasons are two: (1) Generally poor quality and lack of quality control in Chinese manufacturing; and (2) the fact that China steals other countries’ patents wholesale, which makes it illegal to sell their cars in those countries they’ve stolen patents from.

    It would hardly be a surprise if Chinese officials encouraged or even orchestrated a public display of anger at a high-profile foreign company selling expensive cars in China. Not only has China been embarrassed at its inability to sell cars overseas, it has made a government policy of putting obstacles in the face of foreigners selling goods in China that compete with Chinese manufacturers.

  27. Canadian says:

    The charging infrastructure is the problem in China. China just doesn’t have the electricity. 80 percent of all homes in China have electrical wiring about as thick as the wire on your electric shaver. One or to of these thin wires into the house and that is it. That is for all household electricity needs and any recharging for the electric bikes. 220 volt 10 amp. that is it. The communists make you think China is like America. It is not. Only the 10 percent of china communists have more ‘normal’ wiring in their houses and luxury suites. Maybe only tier one cities can have a Tesla vehicle. Most are tier three cities. Bad to no to literally dangerous wiring. So Tesla is in trouble. Tesla will literally have to rewire the entire country of China with power that china does not have. So otherwise Tesla will have to bring 80 percent of china forward by 200 years or so and create confusing mysterious (to monkeys) solar panel based recharging stations all across China. Most Chinese don’t know or understand solar power, even the university educated in China. The chinese are literally like monkeys seeing fire here and the Chinese cannot comprehend any of it even with tesla giving its patents away. So good luck Tesla. And this chinese rich orangutang here was not thankful and smashed the car because he did not want to admit he does not understand anything about it. The chinese have to make everything nothing so they can feel they are better. It is too high for him. Tesla is too high for china. Wisdom is too high for fools.

  28. LOLzer says:

    After taking an overdose of laxitives, I would protest by jumping on the roof and defiating all over mine…