Lemon Law Violation Claimed For Tesla Model X, $162K Refund Sought

MAY 26 2016 BY JAY COLE 115

A Tesla Model X Goes Through An Enhanced Final Quality Check In Fremont, CA...but perhaps too late for Mr. Lyon's early X delivery

A Tesla Model X Goes Through An Enhanced Final Quality Check In Fremont, CA…but perhaps too late for Mr. Lyon’s early X delivery

A disgruntled Tesla Model X owner has taken Tesla to court in California due to malfunctioning features and finishes that the claimant says are unacceptable.  Defects that, as of yet, have not been repairable by the company, thus stating his $162,000 all-electric SUV is a lemon.

What makes this case interesting, besides the fact that many of the issues raised in the lawsuit are ones that have been made known by other early Model X owners, is that the owner – Barrett Lyons, would appear to have no ax to grind with Tesla outside the vehicle itself. Lyons already counts the Roadster and Model S as part of his collection that he is happy with.  So, it would appear to be “one of Tesla’s own” looking for relief from the Model X.

...but in the case of a California X owners they apparently don't know when to stop (via Edmunds)

…but in the case of a California X owners they apparently don’t know when to stop (via Edmunds)

Mr. Lyons details some of the issues via the Courthouse News Service:

“The doors do some weird, wicked things.  If you get in and slide sideways and accidentally tap the brake, the driver’s side door slams shut on your leg. That’s not a very nice thing to have happen to you.”

He also adds:

  • the doors have “slammed shut” on his wife, and also,
  • flung open in their garage (damaging the Tesla and his other gear),
  • the Autopilot in the rain is excessively dangerous, noting that “it causes the car to swerve into different lanes”,
  • the power front doors are opening into cars (and other items),
  • the center touch screen freezes repeatedly,
  • the Autopark is only working properly 10% of the time,
  • the 2nd row seat makes the driver’s seat fold forward, etc

The end result of the laundry list of problems Mr. Lyons has itemized, has been that Tesla has been unable to fix the issues to Mr. Lyon’s liking (he notes the “power door slams” are a feature of the X and can’t be turned off).

It appears many of the new "cutting edge" features in the X aren't finding favor with all new owners

It appears many of the new “cutting edge” features in the X aren’t finding favor with all new owners

As a result, the owner is now asking the court to make Tesla buy back his Model X – for the $161,970 he paid for through a May 13th filing in Placer County Court – as well as his registration fee, damages for breach of warranty and California Lemon Violations + court costs.

“You buy a car like that, you expect it to work,” Lyons said to Courthouse News, “It’s become clear to me that the car wasn’t ready for consumers. The service center is completely unprepared for the kind of problems they’re having.”

As of press, Tesla has not responded when asked for comment.

Given the scope of some of the early issues surrounding the Model X overall, and the fact many of them are not unheard of already, we get the feeling that the matter does have Tesla’s full attention; and that Tesla will either, commit a lot of resources to either winning this case, or to using those same resources to make it go away quietly.

Courthouse News, hat tip to George K!

Categories: Tesla


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115 Comments on "Lemon Law Violation Claimed For Tesla Model X, $162K Refund Sought"

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Given the record of messed-up cars from early off the production line, if I were Tesla I’d just buy it back, then fix it and resell it.

Every manufacturer makes a few lemons.


That would be the smart thing to do, both for customer service and a matter of expediency.

A Sig X owner

Tesla is buying back a few early model X’s… mine included. I never even mentioned the lemon word. I’ve met a few others on the forums in similar situations.
Interestingly enough of those I’ve met online who are getting rid of their X back to Tesla:
* We all own model S. We know what Tesla can do and aren’t wowed with the X acceleration or touch screen as we are used to it. So we have high expectations than others.
* We all have friends with good X’s and so are confident enough to have Tesla replace our cars with new ones instead of cash.

I’m not sure what is different here in this case… did he try asking nicely for his money back? Is there something else different?

Dr. ValueSeeker

Mr. Lyons is also quite unhappy with non-functional auto park and auto steering that don’t work 90% of the time. Apparently, these are beta features. But there is no mention of this on Model S & X ordering pages. Telling customers later on in the owner’s manual that they paid for beta features is, quite honestly, a deceptive practice.

Besides, Mr. Lyons merely followed the normal lemon law process. The hush-hush exchanges that you mention are the abnormal ones.


If they don’t work 90% of the time for Tesla, I really wonder how the rest of the industry is doing …


Oh, wait:
“A rainy night laced with heavy spray from adjacent traffic did dent lane keeping’s confidence, let’s say by 15 percent, but by ­tallying only 29 interruptions in 50 miles, Tesla’s Autopilot app lives in a class of one. “


Most other car companies are working on autonomous driving. They just don’t think it is appropriate to release auto pilot capabilities in beta mode to the public.

Dr. Short-Seller “Dr. Valueseeker” polluted this forum with yet another Tesla bashing FUD post: “Telling customers later on in the owner’s manual that they paid for beta features is, quite honestly, a deceptive practice.” This is an outright lie by a serial FUDster. I Googled [Tesla autosteer], and what did I find at the very first hit? Here’s a partial screenshot, which has not been in any way altered by me except to crop the picture: And as we Tesla fans know, the Tesla display screen also clearly shows “AutoSteer (Beta)”, a feature turned off by default and only activated if the driver chooses that option. Now. So far as I know, every single model of mass produced car has had people who suffered from “buyer’s remorse” and wanted to turn their car back in. That’s gonna happen to Tesla too, despite it having — according to Consumer Reports — a 98% customer satisfaction rating. As Nathanael posted in the very first comment here, Tesla should quietly give the guy his money back, and put it into their CPO program, where I have no doubt it will sell in less than a day… because demand is so high for this… Read more »

And here’s a link to the website where I got that screen shot:


A bit paranoid? I don’t think everyone with a critical position of Tesla is shorting their stock. Tesla has made it clear that this is a beta-feature but it’s well known that Tesla doesn’t pay for any advertising, and they’ve capitalized on this feature very well in the media. All news outlets have tested and been subsequently awe-struck at this feature and Tesla has benefited from the futuristic image it provides for them. They’ve wanted this feature to be pushed to the fore-front to improve sales, which it does, and the designation of beta is a safety given this is very gray regulatory ground. What the owner is pointing out is that this feature clearly wasn’t ready to be marketed for prime-time. There’s a reason other more conservative company’s do not release “beta” features in their cars, because it’s dangerous and they have a lot more to lose. But Tesla needs to perpetuate that they’re ahead of the curve, and if that means cutting the corners to be first to market than that’s fine, because tech company’s do that all the time. Eventually the good will will run out and people will expect higher quality control, likely when the Model… Read more »
Khai L.

No paranoia. ValueSeeker is a TSLA short who posts rather prolifically on seekingalpha.com and teslamotorsclub.com.

Calling him a short is a factual statement.

Oswald said: “What the owner is pointing out is that this feature clearly wasn’t ready to be marketed for prime-time.” That’s an opinion, and it’s one worthy of debate. But it’s not a fact. I said much the same when I first saw videos of idiots using AutoSteer to control the car even on roads with two-way traffic, despite Tesla’s clear warning that it wasn’t to be used except on divided highways. However, Tesla claims that the accident rate using the various “Autopilot” features are already less than the accident rate for human drivers. So I’ve been persuaded I’m wrong. Bottom line, Oswald: Waiting for self-driving cars to have a 0.000% accident rate means we’ll never get self-driving cars. We must learn to accept the fact that self-driving cars will have accidents in situations where people wouldn’t. So long as the overall accident rate is lower, so long as the overall fatality rate is lower, then self-driving cars are a Good Thing. Even the tentative, first baby steps towards fully self-driving cars that is the current state-of-the-art of Tesla’s “Autopilot” is apparently an improvement over the average human driver… altho it certainly is far from being as reliable as a… Read more »


Dr. ValueSeeker said: “Apparently, these are beta features. But there is no mention of this on Model S & X ordering pages.”

The Doctor is correct. On the Model X ordering page, the “Autopilot Convenience Feature” option makes absolutely no mention that it is a beta feature.


Below is the the exact wording used by Tesla in the Autopilot option box on the Model X ordering page.

“Autopilot Convenience Features”

“Dramatically improve the convenience and enjoyment of road trips and your commute by automatically piloting Model X at highway speeds and in stop-and-go traffic. Autopilot enables Model X to match your speed to traffic conditions, steer around curves within the lane and automatically changes lanes with a tap of the turn signal. Summon, a recently released Autopilot feature, enables Model X to automatically park and unpark itself, opening and closing the garage door automatically. Model X can also scan for parking spaces, alert you when one is available and parallel park on command.”

Likewise, Tesla doesn’t describe the Autopilot function as “beta” when it offers the option to current owners for a 30-Day Free Trail. See the screenshot below:

(direct link)


That’s a dishonest post citing what is on the web today and trying to pass it off as what was available when these Model X owners ordered and received their Model X.

Frankly, you appear too emotionially invested in Tesla to see things straight. The mere fact that you have to flood the comments to “defend” Tesla day in and day out leads many to wonder what exactly you do for paid work.


Perhaps, Pushmi-Pullyu is not only emotionally invested in Tesla, but also financially invested in Tesla, as in holding a long position. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯


Or perhaps they are just trying to counter the relentless FUD from TSLA shorts.

A full time job if ever there was one. :-/


You gotta be the biggest JO on these pages.. if you were in Nj.. I’d kick your butt.. you post derogatory comments here about folks and degrade them immediately because they have opinions outside of yours.. we live in the the USA butt head.. and we can express our opinions regardless of your pushy know it all attitudes. . You are an overboard fanboy and an embarrassment to this Tesla owner.. knock it off.

Bill Howland

That is DISGUSTING. For someone in their 60’s to advocate the death of a person who expresses an intelligent opinion (and who is right far more often than you are), seriously polutes and tarnishes the reputation of IEV’s.

If ‘valueseeker’ is a public figure, there could even be legal trouble.

Why do you constantly claim authority over who should be here and who shouldn’t?

If there is anyone who shouldn’t be here, and is polluting the conversation, it is YOU for these reasons:

1). You come off with an ‘air’ of AUTHORITY, but most of your info turns out to be wrong or misapplied.

2). You never appologize for your mistakes.

3). You’ve been here for years and still will not even pickup an inexpensive USED EV.

So I for one wouldn’t miss you if you took your own advice.

A Sig X owner

I think you have a point in that autosteer and autopark may or may not be improved by a replacement car… so maybe he or Tesla doesn’t want the replacement option. i.e. his issues are at least partly about design issues or general software ability to do certain things… which won’t be fixed quickly.
That is different from issues like “the passenger door won’t open, and Tesla had it in the service center for a month waiting for replacement parts” type of activity that you see affecting some people on the forums.

I suspect that people actually utilizing lemon law for a refund is less frequent than people getting a replacement build simply because we haven’t seen more articles like this on official lemons… but you can find on the forums a few getting replacements. Still not a large number either way.

M st. J

Exchange it for a later model that passed higher quality inspection. Fix it and sell it at a reduced price(used). You eat a couple thousand and save your name.

Dr. ValueSeeker

First, this mirage of “higher quality X” has been going on for quite a while. The claim was that X was delayed to deliver the “best quality” car, which has proved to be wrong. Even the latest cars are having various failures (motor failures, fit & finish issues).
Second, the claimant is also very unhappy with autopilot & autopark features. Later builds won’t fix those.


Here it is again Dr. FUD, maybe you get it into your head this time:

“The Tesla’s Autosteer performance can be distinguished from our other contenders by two words: no wobbling. This car identifies the exact center of your lane of travel and holds that course with minimal deviation. This system rises well above parlor-trick status to beg your use in daily driving.

Also to Tesla’s credit, this is the only car capable of hands-free lane changes. You simply use the turn signal the normal way and the Model S glides smoothly into the next lane after verifying that there’s space to do so safely. To move two lanes, you must signal that desire with two separate flicks of the stalk. This function also can be used on freeway entrance and exit ramps. Of course, you must check the cruise control’s set speed to make sure you don’t exceed the car’s cornering grip on a tight ramp.

A rainy night laced with heavy spray from adjacent traffic did dent lane keeping’s confidence, let’s say by 15 percent, but by ­tallying only 29 interruptions in 50 miles, Tesla’s Autopilot app lives in a class of one.”



It’s really too bad that FUDsters like “Dr. ValueSeeker” (even the name is untruthful) are allowed to post here for the dishonest purpose of promoting their short-selling stock position. The best we can do is post facts to counter their FUD, but they know that some will read their lies before any corrections are spotted and refuted.


I, for one, do value Dr. ValueSeeker’s opinions here, as well as that of other shorts. I even more value your contributions. The dialog is useful.

Michael Will

Dialogs and critique are good things but making up stuff like ‘motor failures’ is FUD.

Dr. ValueSeeker

To be clear, I meant window motors, not drive train motors. See post #136 below. He just got his car few days ago.


Even in that case, the motor didn’t fail. It still operates, it simply isn’t working as perfectly as it should, and is causing a purely cosmetic problem that will be repaired under warranty.

Enough of the puffery and whining.


Save your name?

He bought a $160K+ car and is not happy because it doesn’t work. He’s not trying to marry his sister.

There is no shame in what he’s doing…


I think M st. J wrote his comment from Tesla’s perspective. Why going through courts and getting unwanted press attention if a buyback and some thousand dollars on top will fix it. All in all the early X’s were a bit rushed through production.

Bill Howland

Reminds me of the straw that broke the Camel’s back.

The typical hateful comments that articles like this usually generate have been hushed since the Claimant obviously WANTS to like Tesla, since he still has a ROADSTER AND an S.

That’s alot of bucks invested in Tesla Motors.

It also brings all the negative comments toward Bob Lutz saying there is a problem with the “X” – most said he suffers from dementia or is senile, or made other underdeserved – hateful comments when apparently he was definitely onto something that NO ONE at Tesla even saw. That is called Brilliance.

Of course, when I echoed DONC’s comment that Musk’s “Call me at 3 AM if necessary” with the roadster, and now lately, he is sleeping at the end of the assy line – I stated there is something really wrong with Tesla’s X design methodology – to which most said of course it is good to design things this way.

Well – the people who count the most apparently are starting to speak, mainly “X” purchasers who want value for their money.


Just too much cowbell. The less you have the less there is to go wrong. …KISS

I hope they do KISS for the Model 3. It will help them actually reach their price target, and I can open my own doors, etc.


Bill — Bob Lutz has been whining about the Model X before it even came out. You do understand that Bob Lutz is currently working with VIA Motors to put out an EREV SUV that they intend to sell as competition to the Model X, right?

Do you consider trash talk between companies to be authoritative truth?

Bill Howland

Wrong. They cancelled the Via Presidential a long time ago.

I was commenting on the fact that Lutz noticed trouble that Tesla did not.

The only criticism I’ll make of Lutz is I just don’t understand what is taking them so long to ramp up production.

And Via’s website has always been beyond horrible.


I’m surprised Tesla let it get this far, surely it’s a no brainer ?


I wonder how the Tesla permabulls will respond to that one.

It’s clear that this owner (who apparently owns BOTH a Roadster and a Model S, not many Tesla drivers and can say that…) is genuine and has genuine concerns.

The X project should have been halted, then redesigned with normal doors and sold at lower prices thanks to more common parts with the S (Tesla once communicated a mere $5k premium over the Model S, another broken promise).

David Cary

The $5k was alwys for similarly equipped cars. Today the difference is $3500 so not a broken promise IMO. Yes you can’t get some cheaper options with the X – you can’t do the 70 battery or RWD but apart from that the difference is $3500.

Now it is true that no 75D have been delivered yet – but VINs have been assigned and they are told July.

The $161k does requir going absolutely crazy with options – as in every single one – and counting high sales tax. But even then, there must be a little pain and suffering in that total. I’m guessing he is forfeiting all TCs.

The interesting thing is that everything he is complaining about is software – not really fit and finish issues. Autopilot obviously not different on a X and I would think he could get $2500 back and have it shut off if he pushed Tesla hard enough.

So while the X has (or had?) some problems, this specific case isn’t really clear. I mean, if you don’t like what the computer does in different scenarios, is that a Lemon?


the doors have “slammed shut” on his wife and,
flung open in their garage (damaging the Tesla and his other gear)
the Autopilot in the rain is excessively dangerous, noting that “it causes the car to swerve into different lanes”
the power front doors are opening into cars (and other items) beside it
the center touch screen freezes repeatedly
the Autopark is only working properly 10% of the time
the 2nd row seat makes the driver’s seat fold forward, etc

That’s exactly what I see too .. software problems ..
But hey, let’s go with the troll’s suggestions. Tesla should stop production of the Model X!

LOL ?!


There’s some YouTube videos of the front doors on the Model X opening and closing in rapid succession like a scene from the movie Poltergeist. It’s like the Model X is possessed.

Some of the affected Model X owners seem to believe that the apparent “paranormal activity” of the front doors is caused by having one key fob near the Model X, while the other key fob is just at the fringes of the Model X’s key fob detection range, with its signal fading in and out. The Model X gets confused and thinks it’s one key fob coming into and out of range, which results in the doors opening and closing in rapid fire succession.



Could be bad sensors/wiring too.


Tesla choose to put/hide the door sensors behind the aluminum sheet metal rather having the sensors on the outside of the FW doors. Since the sensors have to detect/sense through the aluminum metal, the sensors an less sensitive creating blind spot and false positives. Increasing the power to the sensors to increase their sensitivity also increases the signal to noise ratio, resulting in even more false positive.

It seems like Tesla could have easily avoided the problems it’s having with these sensors by mounting them on the outside of the FW doors rather than hiding them on the inside of the FW doors solely for aesthetic purposes.


tftf said:

“The X project should have been halted…”

Well, that would certainly suit the agenda of a short-selling serial FUDster like you, now wouldn’t it, “tftf”?

Are you still posting multiple Tesla bashing posts over on Seeking Alpha every single day?


The opposite is true:

The more faulty X Tesla makes, the better (for a skeptic). Tesla should also rush and make many faulty M3 cars and sell them for $35k.

You seem blind to Tesla’s propaganda that everything is ok.


If Tesla suspended production of the Model X, the stock price would crash… which would be precisely what a persistent Tesla stock short-seller like you would want. So don’t pretend you’re an honest “skeptic”. Anyone only needs look at all your posts on Seeking Alpha to see all your posts on Tesla articles are pure bashing, with truth being irrelevant to you.

“You seem blind to Tesla’s propaganda that everything is ok.”

Yeah, that’s why I complain about Tesla’s hype so often. [/sarcasm]


I think they should have normal doors standard on the X and the spaceship doors should be an option. They’re kinda stuck for now as they don’t really have the time or resources to re-engineer this as they need to focus on building my model 3. Normal doors on the 3 please.

For the autopilot, Google has a safer design. Tesla should use more lasers combined with GPS data to assist in steering in severe fog, rain and snow etc.


Tesla should just cancel the model X and concentrate on the model 3. They should never have made the x.

Elon, swallow your pride and get rid of the model X. The model X is a warranty nightmare.


He is doing similar mistakes with Model 3. The full glass roof is stupid. It will bake people in the rear seat here in California. Also minimalistic dash is a mistake. A nice dash sells the car. This dash will look cheap in 2 weeks when the novelty wears off.


My wife thinks the volt is too hot in the back even with the dark tint.


She’s just saying that because she doesn’t think it’s fair that the dog gets to ride in the front. I say stick to your guns, first to the car gets to go in the front.


That’s just plain wrong. The first one to call “shot gun” should get to ride in the front passenger seat.


The roof is an option. If you don’t want it, don’t buy it.


Where did you see that? As far as I know there is no room for a cross member above the rear passenger head. So it is not an option. It is designed that way to increase rear seat headroom. Now it can theoretically be replaced by a sheet of steel or aluminium but I doubt without additional space and insulation it will help with the heat problem.


Jychevyvolt said:

“Elon, swallow your pride and get rid of the model X. The model X is a warranty nightmare.”

There were similar claims about the Model S in its early days of production.

It does seem like the falcon-wing doors are proving to be a “problem magnet”, as many (including myself) predicted, but for the other complaints here, I think either these are problems which will be be worked out, or a customer with unrealistically high expectations.

Really, he expected AutoSteer to work just as well when the road was wet with rain? Humans have a harder time seeing the road in heavy rain… did he think the Model X’s sensors would magically avoid the same problem? Well, he could, you know… just not activate AutoSteer when it’s raining heavily! Duh.


Human being are limited. Automation should not mimic our limited. The point of automation is to be better than us.

Until we get to level 4, we should follow Toyota philosophy. Autonomous should step in when we are about to make a mistake. Tesla could still simulate autonomous driving in a sandbox.


The X was supposed to be an easy money maker while they finished work on the ‘3’ (just make the Model S a little bigger! Instant money!”

Then Elon decided to turn it into a freak science experiment and is now costing the company dearly.

I bet he really wishes he could go back and time and slap his past self and prevent the FWD from ever going to production.

Rick Danger

Much as I love Tesla and want it to succeed, I have to agree with you; I wish the X would just go away, before it breaks the company.


I am wondering what will happen in a year or two when these cars are older. Usually problems go up exponentially as the car gets older.


Lessons for the auto biz from show biz.

The rough cut of a movie, is often shown privately to the producers. Pre screenings for the general public are also held weeks, even months before the movie is finally released.

Audience reactions are carefully noted at these screenings. Did the audience laugh at the right time? Did they cry ?
Did the audience cheer the hero? Or did they end up throwing popcorn and drinks at the screen?

Notes and observations are gathered from these screenings and often the movie gets re-edited before final release. The audience actually has some input into the final cut of the film.

This is Hollywood’s version of quality control.

In contrast, I doubt if anyone was ever consulted whether they really wanted gull wing doors or a bio-hazard -filter or not. Was there a loud public outcry for these expensive and troublesome engineering flights of fancy?

Disgruntled Model X customers might end up throwing popcorn and drinks at the screen if the story line to this little B horror movie doesn’t change soon.


How difficult would it be the change the doors back to standard ?


The front doors? I think that should be pretty easy; just deactivate or remove the servos that open and close the doors. (Obviously some software changes required, too.)

Replace the rear falcon-wing doors with normal SUV doors, or (better) sliding minivan style doors? That would require a redesign of the car body. It would be a different model, requiring new crash tests etc.

Paul Stoller

Even though it would be costly for them to do so, it’s getting to the point that I think they may need to consider it.

I do not believe the Model X is going to be the sales success that the S has been.

Instead of increasing their cash flow like a simpler vehicle would have done, they are now stuck with all of these problems and it could harm their financial health.

Paul Stoller said: “Even though it would be costly for them to do so, it’s getting to the point that I think they may need to consider it.” I thought they should have offered it from the start, and said so here several times before the first Model X was sold. Yeah, it would cost some to make a different model, but auto makers used to routinely offer a station wagon version of their sedans, and I doubt the differences are any greater than that. However, as someone pointed out, Tesla’s sales volume is much lower than that of a major auto maker, so an alternative model would have a much higher per-unit development cost. Since I’m not a “financial guy”, I don’t know if it would pay Tesla to do that or not. “I do not believe the Model X is going to be the sales success that the S has been.” It may turn out you’re right, but I think at this point it’s still too early to say. I think people are forgetting how many early problems there were with the Model S. The Model X seems to be getting rave reviews from every direction, just like… Read more »

“The Model X seems to be getting rave reviews from every direction, just like the Model S did.”

Except nobody called Model S ugly where plenty of people called Model X ugly.

Not to mention the list of so called “gimmicky features” on the Model X is far greater than the Model S.


Will you consider a model X without the service warranty?

We all want Tesla is success, but deep inside we know the x was a unnecessary move. Elon should have stuck to his plan and concentrated on the model 3.


It seems that post-Model S, Tesla is not satisfied with making a good car; every new Tesla has to have some sort of crazy gimmick to make it Special:

– falcon wing doors
– panoramic windshield
– instrument-free dashboard
– glass roof

This is already hurting Tesla with the MX. Tesla should focus on just making the MIII a solid car with good performance and quality, instead of more of this gimmick-based product development.


Model Y,

Complete with exploding pen !

Texas FFE

This is the one reason I like to buy off the dealers lot. With a car in inventory not only do you get test drive before you buy, many of the lemons get weeded out on the lot. The only car I ever bought that I thought was a real lemon I factory ordered and I said never again.


Are you trying to imply that there are some cars that dealers never sell off of their lots because customers test drive them, and through some magical process, the dealers decide to never sell them?

I don’t get what you mean claiming that dealers some how “weed out” lemons, and keep customers from buying them.


I think this is a bit of a storm in a tea cup. The X is very tech heavy with a lot of sensors and controls. Autopilot is not a self driving feature it is a driver assistance feature, the idea that people think it should work in rain or snow is a real concern.

This guy has a good case, a lot is wrong with his car, he is perfectly entitled to his money back. Is this the end of the world for tesla? Not really, their brand is not built on quality it’s built on being revolutionary. In some ways this is actually beneficial provided tesla can pull it back and get their QA back under control. All the stories of Elon sleeping at the end of the production line and passionately working with his engineering team is pretty exciting. A very over romanticised version of reality but hardly the end of the world.


Just_Chris said:

“Autopilot is not a self driving feature it is a driver assistance feature, the idea that people think it should work in rain or snow is a real concern.”

Well said, Chris.

Now I don’t think that Tesla should have labeled its driver assist features “AutoPilot”; that does appear to encourage the crazy stuff we’ve seen in videos of people using AutoSteer to drive the car down the road, even on a road with two-way traffic, while not even looking where the car is going, and even in at least one or two cases, doing one-upsmanship on “Look, Ma, no hands!” by bypassing safety features so they could make the car drive while nobody was in the driver’s seat!

Yeah, the problem isn’t so much with the software contained in the car’s hardware brain… it’s with the thinking contained in the some of the drivers’ wetware brains.


Pushmi-Pullyu said:
“[T]hat does appear to encourage the crazy stuff we’ve seen in videos of people using AutoSteer to drive the car down the road, . . . while not even looking where the car is going. . .”

Musk is even guilty of this, having posted YouTube video of themselves screwing around and mugging for the camera while their Tesla’s Autopilot is guiding the car at high speed in heavy traffic on the highway. . . . Err, that would be Mrs. Musk, not Mr. Musk. 😉


That is wife -> ex-wife -> wife -> ex-wife.

And I may even have that sequence messed up

Someone out there

Impossible! That guy must be a Tesla basher, a troll and a TSLA shorter!

Someone out there

This is why I think the Bolt will sell well. Tesla is gaining a reputation of being sub-par quality and that will hurt a lot in the future. I expect the Bolt to be of a quality that can be expected from an experienced car builder. Supercharger or not, I don’t want to buy an expensive EV that I will have to take to the workshop every two weeks because there’s something wrong with it.


While I will not refute Tesla’s quality problems, I would like to highlight GM’s (and specifically their dealer network) proclivity to denying warranty service to customers for items that should be covered by the warranty. I’m not going to emphasize GM’s well-known history of looking the other way on safety issues.


Yeah, trying to deny service that should be covered by warranty is one of the reasons many of us call dealerships “stealerships”.

And that’s one reason that Tesla gets such high marks for customer satisfaction. Tesla service centers go out of their way to find and fix not only actual problems, but potential ones. Unfortunately for Tesla, that does get them dinged a lot by Consumer Reports, which apparently regards any fix as a reliability issue, even if it was a proactive fix of something the customer never even noticed.


I’m still waiting to hear about a Tesla recall that has caused 124 deaths and 275 injuries (and still counting), like GM’s ignition switch recall.

In my opinion, the safer of any two companies would be which ever company hasn’t had hundreds of deaths and injuries due to a recalled part. I’m sort of funny that way.

Someone out there

The reports of failing autopilots seem to be piling up and Tesla is blaming it on driver error. Maybe it’s just a matter of time?


“In my opinion, the safer of any two companies would be which ever company hasn’t had hundreds of deaths and injuries due to a recalled part. I’m sort of funny that way.”

New GM or old GM?

Also, GM has sold Billion cars for over 100 years and Tesla has done it for less than 10 years.

I think it isn’t a fair sampling size?

Has new GM be subjective to the behavior you described?


” I’m not going to emphasize GM’s well-known history of looking the other way on safety issues.”

You mean the old GM.

Any evidence on the new GM?

Mister G

We shall see if the Bolt is better quality…GM has a long history of making crappy gas guzzlers…I rarely see GM cars from the 80’s and 90’s in the wild but I see many Hondas and Toyotas from the 80s and 90s in the wild.


I’m going with the Bolt on this one. In 3 years, my early build (vin 777) ’11 Volt required a new release latch for the charge port and … that’s it. My experience was typical.

The Model S has become OK but the Model X has been a dumpster fire. It’s just shocking what gets delivered to customers, Elon sleeping on the floor or not. And it’s not just problems with the tech. Basic fit and finish stuff that wouldn’t be acceptable on a $12k economy car.

Bill Howland

Exactly right.

Had the same issue with that silly charge port door, but the fix really did fix it apparently permanently.

I have had no problem with warranty service on the volt – they fixed everything that went wrong, and did recalls 3 times on things that I wasn’t even having trouble with, but they replaced anyway.

A very substantial vehicle. If the BOLT is anything like it – Chevrolet will have another winner.

DonC made a comment a while back that seems to sum things up: “Musk doesn’t care about quality, just moving product”.

I find it hard to argue with DonC’s comment. With the VOlt, and especially the ELR (which the execution was flawless even though I dislike the particular gadgets this car has)- they are REALLY trying to make a good car.

My favorite car of all time was my KIA 2006 Amante, the car preceding the 2011 VOlt.

But the most well-built car of all time, even with my small dislikes of certain things in the car, has been the ELR hands-down by a wide margin.

The most ‘fun’ car I ever had was the 2011 Roadster – when it was driveable, that is.

Bill Howland

er: 2004 AMANTE


A problem that is ancient history if you look at the quality reports out of GM in the last 10 years. They have clearly righted the ship, and people like you are perpetuating the myth that the big 3 can’t compete against imports on quality. It just isn’t the case anymore.

Mister G

According to Consumer Reports 2016 Auto issue on page 23…”which brands make the best cars?” 1. Audi 2. Subaru 3. Lexus 4. Porsche 5. BMW 6. Mazda 7. Buick 8. Toyota 9. Kia 10. Honda etc..only one American brand is in the top 10. What has changed?????


Tesla’s association with this Lemon law suit are easy fixes. Put together a team to find some compromises that will retain this customer keeping his car, or exchanging it, for one that will fulfill the owners expectations.
There is no need for the courts to settle this unless Tesla won’t budge. I doubt Tesla wants bad press In this case! “Disgruntled customer, please pick up the White Courtesy Phone”.


My theory is we’ll see a lot more of this. Early adopters, being mostly Tesla fanboys, were probably willing to beta test Tesla products and live with the QC issues. But now that Tesla is becoming more mainstream, the most recent owners aren’t as willing to beta test for Tesla, and are becoming more vocal with their complaints. And that’s why I think Consumer Reports downgraded Tesla on reliability.


I’ve had those thoughts, too. Dunno if they’re right, but there’s probably some degree of truth there.

And I think that’s why Tesla has dropped from 99% customer satisfaction to “only” 98% customer satisfaction, in Consumer Reports reviews.

But think about it: If 98% of Tesla customers are sufficiently happy that they’d buy their car again, that means 1 in 50 isn’t. That’s better than the satisfaction rating for any other auto maker, but that still means there are quite a few unhappy Tesla customers out there. And some of them are speaking out.

Tesla is the worst auto maker… except for all the others (apologies to Winston Churchill). 😉


“And I think that’s why Tesla has dropped from 99% customer satisfaction to “only” 98% customer satisfaction, in Consumer Reports reviews.”

Latest ranking is “only” 96% now…

Jacked Beanstalk

Just wait until Tesla unleashes their half million strong fleet of rolling junkyards. It’s going to get ugly.

It’s interesting that most of this buyer’s problems are associated with useless bling like automatically opening doors or pointless geegaws like the Falcon doors. All the product of circle jerk engineering with insufficient real world testing. Tesla need to check out the GM proving grounds here in MI to see how much work it takes to validate an engineering design.


Oh yeah,those GM proving grounds that validate ignition switch failure and a myriad of other technical wonders, that have kept them at the fore front of engineering and design. /s

Jacked Beanstalk

You mean like how the Chevy Volt ranks among the most reliable cars on the road?

insideevs dot com/chevy-volt-tops-j-d-power-three-year-dependability-study/

ecomento dot com/2014/05/13/chevrolet-volt-among-the-most-dependable-cars-money-can-buy/



Seriously, we just went through a historic level of recalls by GM, and you want to hold them up as some sort of poster child of design and reliability?

This is the company that chose to kill people over $0.57. And let people go to jail instead of admitting their own design problems.

Jacked Beanstalk

GM’s cars routinely rank as average or above average in quality surveys. They are a good representative of the industry average. In these same surveys Tesla is either near the bottom or dead last.

Note that even Toyota has recalls and design flaws. You can cherry pick issues for every company.

George Bower

This doesn’t give me a warm feeling about getting a low VIN Model 3.

The more I study about the reliability issues with Tesla, the more I conclude that a used Model S might be a better choice….and for around the same money as a M3 with the same range.


That’s pretty simple. If you don’t want to be one of the first couple of hundred thousand people, just don’t configure and finalize your reservation until you are ready.

If you don’t already have a reservation, the entire problem has already been solved, because you won’t be getting one of the early cars anyways. Too many people already in line ahead of you.

George Bower

I’m at 275. There’s any number of ways I can get my car in the first wave in Arizona. Elon says they will go west to East so that means I’m in good shape there. The other thing I need to do is order more goodies. Hmmm no problem.

The dilemma I face is the reliability issue with early VIN cars. Another consideration is that if you don’t order early you might get hit with a price increase. Musk has done that also.

So these are not easy decisions.

Jacked Beanstalk

It’s more simple than that: if reliability matters to you then don’t buy a Tesla. Tesla does not sell a single model that fits any reasonable definition of the word reliable.

It sucks because there is no other EV choice to rival Tesla’s performance, handling, and style/beauty. Visually their cars are works of art.


Short sellers are getting a bit desperate now, what with the issuance of new stock which hardly had any effect on the price.

As regards the complaints in this article some of them seem a bit over-the-top, or easily solved.
1. Auto-pilot does not drive well in the rain.
1a. Turn auto-pilot off in difficult driving conditions.
2. The seat goes t0o far forwards.
2a. Stop it before it does, or move the other seat forward.

The guy sounds sort of like a clutz, but some people are, maybe the car does not fit him, so give him money back and be done with it.
Convenient timing on Tesla bashing stories considering another famous house is shorting them. From IBD:


Get Real

You nailed it ffbj.

This devonshire research group looks like they are in business to short Tesla plus they appear to be trying to fake some legitimacy by using the famous English name of Devonshire..

They are probably buddies with Spiegel, Wahlman and all the other stock manipulators posting here like tftf.

What’s hilarious is that I doubt any of these manipulators even drive EVs, their so goal in life is to leach off of others by extracting/extorting money from companies and they themselves produce nothing of real value unlike the companies they raid of cash.

Their is most certainly a desperation building with the anti-EV forces and their allies in the stock manipulators.

When Tesla gets the M3 into mass production their chance of stopping rapid EV adoption is dead.


I do believe there is a concerted campaign by various interests to attack Telsa.
It’s a logical consequence of the position they are in.
When people feel threatened they lash out at the object they perceive as the origin of that threat.

In regard to Tesla they should be afraid, they should be very afraid. The intense, dedicated, efforts to harm Tesla, will only get more strident and fanatical I am afraid, as Model III comes closer to production.

Jacked Beanstalk

That must be it. Anyone who has a problem with any Tesla product must be a klutz or an idiot or a short seller. Smart people don’t complain about dodgy products, and physically dextrous people have no problems dealing with faulty seats.

That’s why only stupid people by Toyotas, because imbeciles can only handle products of the very highest quality.

Alan Campbell

Tesla needs to swap out the Model X for a new one, along with offering more training on how to use the new technologies.

For instance, if you use the auto open feature for the front door, and then tap the break to close the door, but keep one leg out, it will get hit.

I think the new forward thinking Tesla, is running up against consumer competence roadblocks what more established automakers have already experienced years ago. Which is why produces for the mass market have to be dumbed down for the general public, with protections, even at Tesla’s price range.

Jacked Beanstalk

If a car’s controls require “training” to use, then they are badly designed and pose a road hazard to others.


The guy could have bought much less expensive SUV car, with normal doors and door handles which always work … add Leaf to it to make him feel good and donate the rest of money to a good cause …. instead he had to buy model X to make a statement.

I admire these rich guinea pigs though, I must say. Where would Tesla be without them.

Jeffrey Songster

Yes… amusing to hear folks talking up the GM proving grounds… that also sold me a Lemon years ago before the keyswitch scandal. They bought mine back under duress. I got another from them and fixed it myself because the only real problem was that GM was hyping the fuel econ nums and didn’t want to recertify the car and run a slightly higher idle. Sad and stupid… so GM guys… I wouldn’t start throwing stones at Tesla based simply on the construction material inherent in the designs of your domiciles!

Keep the faith… update the software. SW bugs like front doors… maybe you require 3 deliberate presses of the pedal to quickshut the door… but if you let it shut slowly 1 press will do. Also in future versions you put a sensor on the lower inside of the door to prevent shutting when limbs are present.
Short sellers and GM trolls need to go away!

Jacked Beanstalk

Just about any car company’s proving grounds could be used as an example for Tesla to follow. Depending on the quality survey, there are either few brands or no brands that build reliable cars than Tesla.


Once these cars get a bit older they will be a $140,000 object of ridicule. The problem is that Tesla does not test their products properly before releasing them.


A lot of his complaints are not even lemon law related (for example the door closing and autopilot complaints seem more like him not liking the features than the car being a lemon). As others pointed out, there have been a few Model X lemons (mainly to do with defects during assembly like incorrectly installed parts/trim), but Tesla bought back or replaced them.

A lot of his complaints seem more like buyer’s remorse on the features.

Mark Z

For those who are willing to let Tesla fix the faults, they will enjoy a much better vehicle than the one they received at delivery.

In my situation, some seats, front door latches, door sensors and weather seals were in need of replacement. The quality of the drive train and body structure have been at Model S levels. Acceptable for a very early Model X made in Nov ’15.

Jacked Beanstalk

How are such problems acceptable on a $100K car built at any time?

The excuses some people make for Tesla…I just don’t get it. If I paid that kind of money for a car and ended up with such a turd I would be livid. Hell, the ONLY way such problems could be acceptable is on a used car handed down for free by a dead relative.


Those doors were such a bad idea. 🙁

I hope they get it sorted out.


If I understand the Lemon Law correctly, it’s for the repair of the same issue 3 times.

Can anyone else clarify?


That is correct.

3 tries for the same problem up to owner satisfaction…

Bill Howland
GM’s legal troubles of manufacturing “DEATH TRAPS” – that is, cars that may shut off when the driver hangs too many keys from the key ring, hits a bump, and the ignition shuts off, could have totally washed their hands of everything by having their legal department issue the following statement as the first hint of a lawsuit. “GM’s ignition switch is only designed to hold a key ring with only the ignition key and the trunk key, issued by GM”. “..Unauthorized copies of these keys, and other keys that have no relation to operation of the vehicle and have not been issued by GM are NEVER allowed on the same ring while the vehicle is in operation. “…Since GM has no control over how large or heavy, or how much Torque Moment is placed on the ignition switch designed to work with only GM supplied and authorized keys on the ring, the issue of the ignition switch operation is not guaranteed with other than the GM authorized Key ring (light wire ring, and small Moment), and an optional trunk key. We cannot control what a customer might do after the sale, and more than one trunk key, or a… Read more »

My 2013 P85 vin4085 has been flawless, 46k miles.

Tesla loaned us a Model X for the weekend and I was highly impressed with the SUV. The doors performed way better than I thought they would and felt a lot extremely confident in the vehicle.

They opened in our tight garage and the kids could get in and out. We can’t even do that now with my wife’s Land Rover. Kids have to get out before my wife parks in the garage with the LR3.