Tesla Model 3 Teardown Reveals Some Issues – Video

1 week ago by Eric Loveday 138

Teardown experts Munro & Associates have gotten their hands on a Tesla Model 3 and they sure do seem disappointed.

Tesla Model 3 Teardown – Initial Analysis

Immediately, some glaring issues were found. Door handles are very difficult to use, requiring two hands in most situations. Door/window seals are haphazardly pieced together. High-effort trunk. The hood is difficult to open, especially in the event of a crash and on and on.

Most of the issues seem to center around usability and concerns linked to if it were in an accident. Like, for example, how difficult it may be to exit the car in the event of an accident leading to total power outage.

Yes, quite a few of the issues are minor, but Sandy Munro of Munro & Associates is used to nit-picking cars during teardown, yet he still seems especially disappointed with the Model 3.

Video description (via Autoline):

A lot has been written about Tesla’s Model 3. But those reports mostly come from EV enthusiasts and owners. By all accounts they love the car. But so far no one with deep experience in design, engineering and manufacturing has evaluated it, at least no publicly.

That’s why we were excited to get an invitation from Sandy Munro to visit his shop and take a look at a Model 3 that he’s about to test and tear down for a competitive benchmarking study. And Sandy found a number of issues that he really doesn’t like about the car, which he pointed out to Autoline’s John McElroy.

Take a look.

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138 responses to "Tesla Model 3 Teardown Reveals Some Issues – Video"

  1. Pat Free says:

    For sure a very hostile review. Is FOX TV the sponsor ? Presenting emergency openings of the car as if the normal way to open them every day is not fair.
    I drive a Tesla Model X 100D that i love. I open the frunk either with my key fob or using the tablet. Really no issue with that. Understand the tablet may go wrong in an accident, may be, but my key fob should still work, at least as long as I do. Or the emergency opening should do the job, for once in the life of the car may be… Not that big deal ! Plus in the cases you could not access the cabin you would neither access the usual mechanical opening of the frunk in former ICE cars. Hence would also be left with emergency openings. This is missing the point that EVs are far better cars, and the day you move to a Tesla you never return to an ICE car.

    1. Dan says:

      If you’re in an accident, you’re likely knocked out cold and neither your fob nor your tablet will be of any help. Emergency personnel are attempting to disconnect the battery so that they can get to you. No EMT will get near the car or help you until the high voltage battery has been disconnected.

      1. darth says:

        You don’t actually know any EMT’s do you? The ones I know won’t wait to do patient care, even if they should.

        1. Steve says:

          Actually, I do know someone who has been trained on this… You’re assessment of first responders is not correct.

          1. Windbourne says:

            It will depend on the personal. Some will obey the rules and steer clear. Others will get right in there as long as a gas tank is not on fire.

            As to the battery in an EV, that was pretty funny. The batteries have breakers that prevent any real issues. The only way that somebody is going to stay back from an EV is if it hit an ICE vehicle and both are in massive flames.
            Interestingly, it is NOT the EV battery that is to be afraid. It is the gas tank that can, AND DOES, EXPLODE. The batteries are not an issue. They do not explode.

            1. Dan says:

              It’s not like they are unfamiliar with high voltage situations. The exact same scenario is in play if your car is stuck with a downed power line on it. No EMT will come near you until the power company confirms a disconnect. Go to your local fire station. They’ll have manuals for disengaging the battery of every EV in production.

              1. Windbourne says:

                Dan, a wild HV line running around a gas tank is SCARY. I doubt that many EMS would go anywhere near that, unless it involves a baby, child or a relative.

                BUT, an HV line whipping around, is radically different than an EV which is in an accident and you are simply pulling ppl out, or treating them right there.
                Those lines in Tesla are WELL designed to hold up to accidents. More importantly, in a car, the HV in Tesla will be shut off by breaker. The reason why you want to kill the connection is IFF you are going to be cutting into the car. THEN you are going to have to turn off the HV.

                1. Steve says:

                  It’s not radically different when it comes to high voltages. They are trained not to take risks when it comes to accidents involving EVs. We’re not talking fender benders, we’re talking about jaws of life conditions to extricate someone from a vehicle that has taken heavy damage. No one is relying on a breaker.

                  1. Windbourne says:

                    Oh, I agree with you. I think that once you are dealing with cutting/jaws, that HV line being dead will be all important.
                    I know that I would not want to rip into something like that and take a jolt.

                    1. Nix says:

                      To everyone —

                      First responders have been dealing with high power electric systems in cars since hybrids first came to the market in the mid-90’s. This is so old-hat that it isn’t even funny. 20+ years of dealing with high power battery packs in cars and still NOT A SINGLE CASE OF A FIRST RESPONDER BEING ELECTROCUTED!!!!

                      It is all sound and fury, signifying nothing.

                      You want to talk about what scares the hell out of first responders? Going to an oil refinery fire or an oil train fire. They are so dangerous that they don’t even try to fight the fires, they stand back and just try to contain it until they burn themselves out.

                      https://www.cnn.com/2013/07/08/world/americas/canada-runaway-train/index.html

              2. David D Nelson says:

                The difference is that with the HV power lines you could be in between the points trying to conduct electricity where as in an EV the connection points are all in the EV. Very different conduction paths.

        2. Chris Denver says:

          If no observable hazards exist, the fire department will spread the hood, not search for a button, while the medics start patient care.
          https://youtu.be/0eXpmNdk87k
          If there’s entrapment, cutting the passenger compartment MAY have to wait until power is cut at the battery/high-voltage disconnect, ICE or BEV no different.
          -Paramedic in Denver

          1. Leptoquark says:

            Very interesting. I’ll like to see a professional open up a Model 3 with spreaders. That would really tell us something.

      2. jelloslug says:

        That has to one of the most silly non-FC related posts I have read in a long time on this site.

      3. Windbourne says:

        LOL.
        yeah, Right.
        Let me guess. Later on when you are paid by some car maker to push EVs, you will claim that no EMS will get ANYWHERE near an ICE car, until the fuel tank is disconnected.
        Right?
        LOL.

        U have never done EMS, and more importantly, you are lying about having talked to anybody that is in EMS.

        1. Dan says:

          Lol. I love it when people act like they know stuff.

          Here’s the deal. Every EV maker has to build a first responder specific emergency response guide on how to do a battery disconnect. Here are Tesla’s manuals: https://www.tesla.com/firstresponders

          If it takes a few minutes longer to do the disconnect, that’s exactly what it will take before they touch the vehicle.

          1. Windbourne says:

            Dan, I used to be an EMT.
            I still stay up on certain things and have friends/relatives in it (love the rush).

            The HV lines are to be disconnected IFF you have to cut somebody out. From what I have seen and heard from others, ppl almost NEVER need to be cut out of Tesla. They are easy enough to deal with. In general, most ppl WALK away from accidents in Tesla.

            The fact that you made up stuff about

            No EMT will get..’
            ‘ shows that you have zero knowledge.

            Firemen are the ones that will be pulling ppl out.
            Secondly, Paramedics/EMTs will do the treating.
            Third, that has been named EMS for several decades.
            Fourth, when you have no knowledge, please do not put others done to make yourself look like you have something, esp. when you already tried to BS something.

            BTW, showing a link to a first responder manual really does not back up ANYTHING that you said. It is simply a waste.

      4. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        Dan said:

        “No EMT will get near the car or help you until the high voltage battery has been disconnected.”

        Darth correctly refuted this, but Steve responded to Darth:

        “You’re [sic] assessment of first responders is not correct.”

        A bit later, Steve chimed in:

        “It’s not radically different when it comes to high voltages. They are trained not to take risks…”

        Gosh, what a coincidence that here we have not one, not two, but three established serial Tesla bashers all making ridiculous claims about fire fighters and paramedics being unwilling to touch an EV after an accident!

        Do we really need anything else, other than their reputation as habitual liars, to know this is complete and utter bull pucky and FUD?

        Reality check: Have we ever seen any report of any emergency responder injured or killed by being electrocuted by an EV? No, we have not! And emergency responders, not being completely stupid, know this too.

        Now, I do agree that the procedures for emergency access to the frunk from the outside, seems to be unnecessarily difficult and time-consuming. But for FUDsters to claim that this means emergency responders will “be afraid to touch the car”… well, that’s just one of their Big Lies that they like to repeat.

        And apparently they think some people reading their comments are actually stupid enough to believe them. Pretty insulting, innit?

        * * * * *

        Oh, one more pile of FUD in this video: Claiming that people in an accident in a TM3 have “only seconds” to get out. Nope, not at all. In a gasmobile you may have only seconds to get out before the car bursts into flames. But if there is a battery fire in an EV following an accident, it will take several minutes before actual flames start appearing. No need to rush in getting out of the car; you’ve got plenty of time. No one has ever been injured or killed due to an EV car fire. We certainly can’t say the same about gasmobile fires!

        1. jimjfox says:

          Slightly off-topic; “FUD” is a silly term inasmuch that ‘uncertainty’ & ‘doubt’ are synonyms.
          WHY then use 2 words with the exact same [!] meaning? BAD English.
          No offence intended

    2. pjwood1 says:

      Fox TV? No. Worse. Detroit, but at least these guys don’t seem to be doing any monkey testing.

      Bonzo! Bonzo! Where are you…

    3. Lamata says:

      These guys are bought & owned by the BIG auto . I wonder how much these Trolls got Paid for this BULL SH!T Phony Review…

      1. Warren says:

        LMAOTA, Please stop spreading your propaganda as usual. Munro and Associates are paid to be as objective and scientific as possible. Their career reputations are based on this. Perhaps you should read a little about their work before criticizing them any more:

        http://leandesign.com/people-at-munro/

        1. Lamata says:

          Someone should make a video & show that Bozo how to properly open a Model 3 door , THE RITE WAY !

          1. TwoVolts says:

            The pathetic attempt to sell us on the idea that opening the M3 door is difficult reminded me of the Jim Carrey ‘JuiceMan’ skit. “You need to be a NASA scientist to get inside that thing…”

            See from 1:30 mark to 1:50: https://youtu.be/hmCqgGpR2YI

        2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

          “Munro and Associates are paid to be as objective and scientific as possible. Their career reputations are based on this.”

          Gosh wow, we can see just how “objective” and “scientific” these EV-hating gear-heads are. 🙄

          This propaganda hit-piece pretending to be a “review” was so obviously biased that I shut it off after a few minutes. When it’s so obvious that they are constantly stretching the truth past the breaking point, why waste time watching any more of their half-truths and outright lies?

          After making this video, their reputations for objectivity, truthfulness, and using the scientific method, aren’t worth the proverbial plugged nickel. But I’m sure the Big Three of Detroit will be pleased with the anti-Tesla propaganda churned out by their minions.

          1. TwoVolts says:

            Spot on.

            1. L'amata says:

              Those two are playing Good Cop…Bad Cop…Phony Baloney ….

          2. Fred says:

            EV hating gearheads?? Munro and associated was raving enthusiastic about what an impressive car the BMWi3 is from an engineering point of view. Addictionaly, he said the only thing he hates about it is the REXs combustion engine. I think he is right to point out issues Tesla has to do something about very urgently. The fact that the 3 is an affordable EV will not stay Tesla’s USP for very long. I love Elon Musk and both companies he runs for what they have done for the world and for what they stand for. That is exactly why Tesla needs a reality check. If they are to continue to be successfull, they have a mountain of quality and design issues to fix.

    4. Walter says:

      It was a strange review. He claimed it was almost impossible to open the door with one hand and proceeded to easily open the door with one hand.

      Then there was the really, really weird talk about how rear seat passengers would have to fold down their seats and exit through the trunk. Say WHAT? Easier to just climb out the front.

      Few facts, a lot of hyperbole (hardest trunk to close he has ever seen???? Really??? No reports of that from any ownera and it seemed to easily move with almost no effort.

      Fingernail gap vs gap the size of a thumb? Is that how Sandy measures things? How about some actual facts, it certainly didn’t look like either a fingernail or thumb gap to me.

      I think Sandy is having a hard time adapting to the 21st century, probably has a flip phone because those new fangled smart phones are hard to use.

      I think Sandy is just having a hard time adapting to the 21st century.

  2. Scott B. says:

    Just took a look at Munro & Associates website. Obviously they are bought and paid for by BMW, which is surprising that this wasn’t something coming from the Koch Brothers.

      1. WARREN says:

        Ha, just because the i3 was one of the most remarkably engineered cars on the planet does not mean they have affiliations with BMW. Look at their website, Munro and Associate’s has a pretty impressive pool of engineers that they retain.

        1. Lamata says:

          Wo Wren ..the i3 Is an Expensive Pile of Defective Garbage! Nothing More!!

          1. CDspeed says:

            What’s defective about the i3? Aside from my Model X I still own my 2014 i3 BEV, and it’s been the most reliable car I’ve ever owned. My Model X had five trips to the service center in the first year, compared to one regular maintenance visit per year for my 3+ year old i3.

            1. L'amata says:

              EVERYTHING ! Starting with the STUPID FUGLY Cheap Looking Carbon Fiber Interior…..The Car Is Expensive BMW Garbage.

    1. yogurt says:

      Ummm…. NO…

      I think you misunderstand what they did with the i3 and their association with BMW…
      They have NO association with BMW…
      They reversed engineered the i3 and did a cost bread down of every component and the manufacturing of it to the level where they say a screw costs 1.2 cents and installing the screw .8 cents…
      They then SOLD their breakdown to auto manufactures worldwide…
      They did the i3 because it was and still is REVOLUTIONARY in the mass production of a carbon fiber vehicle…

      1. yogurt says:

        and FYI every auto manufacture reverse engineers every other auto manufactures cars…
        So much so that I read an article on Ford who was reverse engineering all of their Chinese auto completion to catalog their quality and how long it will take them to reach quality parity…

      2. TeslaPlease says:

        If Munro & Associates thinks Tesla is going to cooperate in their ‘cradle to grave’ analysis ( component-level research) of the Model 3, they are in for a rude awakening.

        If Munro performs the same level of detail on the Model 3 as they did on the BMW i3, we will learn a lot about not just the car but the decisions Tesla made from design through production. Something Tesla currently ‘keeps close-to-vest’.

        BMW invested billions on the i3 Megacity initiative to not only build an EV but evaluate a ‘next-generation manufacturing process’ and new uses of CFRP. The learnings are already being pushed down through the BMW Group’s latest products (in Rolls Royce).

    2. Lamata says:

      These Guys are “MASSIVE detroit LIARS” ! The Model 3 Is the SAFEST and Most Perfect Mid Size EV on the Planet today , Nothing comes close with 500,000 Pre -Orders to Re-Affirm That . Model 3 will only Get Better & Better in a very time. MODEL 3 is THE BEST ! HANDS DOWN !

  3. Was this a review of the entire car or how to get out when a person is driving a Tesla model 3 when involved in an accident? Obviously this gentleman is there to criticize the car.

  4. CDspeed says:

    I have a Model X 90D, and it’s pretty much the same story with panel gaps, except I payed quite a bit more then the cost of a Model 3. Not that it bothers me too much, and I do remember that they’re still a very young company by comparison. Refinement will come with age.

    1. stuart22 says:

      Very charitable response to something GM would never get away with.

      1. CDspeed says:

        @ stuart22, I am trying to give Tesla a small break, but they better get their quality under control. I’m already thinking of trading my Model X, but not until I can get something like the Jaguar I-Pace, or Audi e-tron Quattro.

      2. Steven says:

        Really?
        My ’85 Chevy Blazer, and the Service Manager at my dealership would argue that point.

        Straighten one panel, and another seam would be off. Fix that seam, and a panel would be off. The hood was always tilted a few degree to starboard.

        But it was a “work truck” so I didn’t lose any sleep over it.

    2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      “I have a Model X 90D, and it’s pretty much the same story with panel gaps…”

      You mean you make laughably over-the-top claims about being able to “stick your thumb” into a panel gap because it’s maybe, at most, 1mm to 1.5mm wider than the matching gap on the other side? The very same sort of panel gap seen on literally any random car you can find in any parking lot in any city? The kind of almost microscopic panel gap mismatch, one which you’d never even notice unless you were giving it a magnifying-glass-close examination?

      No, I seriously doubt you are spouting B.S. like that.

      * * * * *

      I think what really bothers Detroit is that with the Tesla Model 3, Tesla has shown it can do better with fit-and-finish than the legacy auto makers. Perhaps this has them running so scared that they are actually promoting the FUD smear campaign about Tesla’s fit-and-finish, despite the fact — that’s fact, not opinion — that nearly every report from an actual TM3 owner reports that the fit-and-finish is better than expected for a car in this price range.

      But that reality doesn’t fit the FUDster narrative, now does it? *Sigh*

      * * * * *

      Yeah, you can “stick your thumb in there!”

      😆 😆 😆

    3. TeslaPlease says:

      What makes me nervous is Tesla has the task of building 200K+ Model 3s with acceptable quality and reliability. Tesla up to this point is riding on a wave of owner good-will (as you are displaying) and willingness to overlook misaligned, panels, and Model 3 seat heaters paid for but not enabled (why).

      These sort of missteps combined with Tesla playing coy about opening up the order process for the base $35K version could become problematic.

      How many fewer reservations would Tesla have obtained if Elon had stated “Tesla Model 3 – Nicely equipped @ $56K”?

  5. Liuping says:

    “Door handles are very difficult to use, requiring two hands in most situations. ”

    I’ve never use two hands to open the door. I have no idea why you would need to unless you were trying to make it look difficult.

    1. Didier says:

      Anyway Tesla has too many orders, in the worth case this german lobbying division joke will make my Tesla at home earlier. At least this time no monkeys has been tortured.

    2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      “I’ve never use two hands to open the door. I have no idea why you would need to unless you were trying to make it look difficult.”

      He admits right in the video that his hand was broken and that’s why he finds it difficult, yet he continues his FUD about the difficulty being the design of the handle rather than the fact his hand doesn’t work right.

      That said, in reports from owners they do say that the handles will pinch your fingers if you’re not familiar with how they work. So I do agree those handles need to be redesigned — just not for the reason claimed in this anti-Tesla FUD video.

      1. Terawatt says:

        “admits”??

        He simply states it, and says he doesn’t like them and he ends up using both hands. How is that FUD?!? You’re paranoid dude, absolutely paranoid!

        As for the panel gaps, we clearly didn’t watch the same video. It’s ridiculous. You’re welcome to argue all day long that clumsy handles are worth it for their aero advantage over conventional ones and cost advantage over retracting ones, and that panel gaps aren’t really important to you, but so being so dishonest about the facts! The handles are obviously not as simple to use as conventional ones. The gaps are reminiscent of the seventies. And even you can see that.

        1. Walter says:

          He said it was almost impossible to open with one hand and proceeded to easily open it with one hand

        2. Cecil T says:

          I love how everyone who thinks they’re an expert on fit and finish *only* talks about panel gaps and have no idea how to actually look at a car properly for fit and finish. I have never seen a discussion about Tesla fit and finish that went into paint depth, peel, jams, stitching, fasteners, interior gaps, etc.

          And anyone who actually knows how to look at panel gaps knows that they’re measurable. It’s not a subjective thing. The gap and the vertical offset are easily measurable and comparable to similar vehicles, if you don’t see someone publish the measurements they have no idea what they’re doing.

          1. TeslaPlease says:

            I have seen one too many new Tesla Model 3 owners waxing on incessantly about their new Model 3 and how great a car it is while the YT videos show:

            — Misaligned frunks
            — Scratched consoles
            — Paint orange peel
            — Features paid for but not enabled
            — Dents in body panels not disclosed by Tesla but caught by the owner at deliver
            — PDI’s not performed and issues not documented by Tesla employees

            While all these new owners are being offered free sodas and expressos at delivery (while their final payments are being taken) one has to ask:

            WHAT DOES IT TAKE BEFORE YOU TO REALIZE HOW MUCH YOUR TIME AND CUSTOM ARE BEING DISRESPECTED?

  6. Didier says:

    Is it a joke ?

    Can real people be so stupids ?

    I won’t even comment more since all what they said is ridiculous.

    BTW they should see rescuers doing their job, maybe they would understand a few things…

    If one day I have a big accident, I hope it will be in a Tesla, and I trust rescuers to be infinitely more intelligent than “Munro & Associates” to get me out.

    1. Prsnep says:

      “Can real people be so stupids ?”

      Made me chuckle.

      1. scott franco says:

        I believe the gentleman answered his own question.

    2. Lamata says:

      These Detroit Trolls are Paid well to put down Tesla & EV’s unless Maybe it’s GM, Ford Or Chrysler. McElroy is a Little Man, But a BIG GOOF

  7. eltosho says:

    I am glad that the M3 is no car for senile idiots 🙂

    P.S. MS and MX have a mechanical emergency release for the trunk. The M3 probably has one also.

  8. Harold T says:

    Autoline is a shill for the Detroit boys and I’m not surprised. The panel fit is an issue that’s been prevalent on all teslas. In the X I Demo’d, the falcon door was rubbing the paint off the chassis. Rubber seals are a problem for all teslas. You are buying a Beta Product, but a revolutionary one!

  9. ffbj says:

    Autoline Daily is decidedly anti Tesla. They have old white haired guys come on their show and talk about how Tesla will fail, over and over again.

  10. CCIE says:

    I love that previous two comments make fun of the teardown experts while using some amazingly poor english grammer.

    1. CCIE says:

      Darn, wasn’t fast enough and now those TOEFL failure comments are way up! Oh well, it was still amusing.

    2. Didier says:

      The point is English is not the only spoken language on earth, even if you did not know it. I am French, I also speak Spanish and English but off course far as well I as speak French.

      But in what your comment is in anyway relevant ?

      1. CCIE says:

        No, but it is the current lingua franca. My point was you were making fun of the tear down experts when you can’t even string together a few coherent sentences in English. You did it again with your reply to me, which is even more amusing.

  11. Jim says:

    Did anyone commenting even watch the video? Apparently not as none of the comments prior to mine show any familiarity with what was actually said.

  12. Leo Zalewski says:

    Wheres the teardown? They just opened the doors and trunks, everything was not like there ICE car.
    Nothing new in this review

  13. yogurt says:

    Other posters have said before and it is very true that the early adopters who bought the S and X would put up with quality and refinement issues…
    But mainstream buyers will not put up with little issues and will want and expect Toyota like fit and finish…
    For all of you who think Tesla is comparable to BMW it is not and the exact opposite is the British guy from Fully Charged who did a BMW 330e review (I think it was that one but was not the i3) and he obviously was never in a BMW before and was in shock over how solid the door felt closing it to which he did several times…
    Tesla is awesome but they need to follow the KISS philosophy much more and ditch Elon as the CEO to grow to their full extent possible as an auto manufacture…

  14. Serial anti Tesla troll Thomas says:

    Total rubbish…..every Chinese car has better quality

  15. Jeff Songster says:

    While unconventional can be more difficult for rescuers… the Tesla’s should be less likely to need rescue… and less likely to lose power completely. Might be a good idea to put capacitors or small battery, something into each door… so it works regardless of the main systems.

  16. F150 Brian says:

    The entertainment value of the video and previous posts is pretty high 😉

    …but sloppy assembly is sloppy assembly, no matter who is telling you about it.

  17. Nelson says:

    If I was unconscious in an accident I would hope the first responder would be smart enough to go through the windows to get into the car.

    NPNS! SBF!
    Volt#671 + BoltEV

  18. CarGuy says:

    Wow, the so called expert doesn’t seem like he has worked on a car since the 90s. The first responder guide, which all first responders should be familiar with addresses the issues he had no clue about. Terrible reporting.

    1. HVACman says:

      I have the Model 3 1st Responders’ Guide and have it opened on my computer as I write. Sandy appears to have read it. All door access and power shutoff procedures and limitations are essentially as he described. His reporting appears to be spot-on. Can’t say the same about your commenting.

      For those who would care to confirm data before opining, see responders guides for all Tesla products below.

      https://www.tesla.com/firstresponders

      1. Carguy says:

        Of course the link you provided doesn’t address the Model 3. The link in this article will allow you to download the whole first responder guide. It shows exactly were to cut to disconnect the battery.

        https://electrek.co/2017/09/22/tesla-model-3-powertrain-chassis-first-responders-guide/

  19. Curt C. Richerund says:

    More design flaws with this thing.
    Ugh.

    1. Warren says:

      And reading comprehension flaws, lol.

      1. Jj says:

        Hey Sherlock, it was a video!

        1. Lamata says:

          Get it ? Wo Wren !

  20. Another Euro point of view says:

    It might indeed be that those men are biased against Tesla but from other sources it nevertheless seems that quality/reliability issues are still a concern and as I don’t think this is a threat for US sales it could become tough on export should Tesla not quickly improve on that. The comments I read about i-pace and e-tron reservations on elbilforum.no are often based on Norwegians having had bad experiences with their Tesla stuck too long/too often in service centers . As someone wrote here not long ago, the cult surrounding Tesla could make Tesla sloppy/compalcent. This is evidenced by some here who wrote that it’s not too bad those Model 3 are not too well built as the waiting list is too long anyway. The problem is that it could be that this waiting list is made of 85% of base $35K models by people who actually had a $25K budget and are likely not so keen to go through the drama of having your one and only family car stuck in service centers too often (as opposed to the early adopters who often had more than one car thus not minding the low built quality too much).

    1. eltosho says:

      The “quality issues” are probably a result of the lack of animal testing 🙂

  21. Roy_H says:

    Wow, he uses two hands to open the door because he has arthritis in his left hand!
    Panel mis-alignment was the rear trunk, easily adjusted by any mechanic.
    I think he did have a valid point about rear doors having no mechanical back-up for emergency opening from inside. A lot of cars have child door locks designed so children cannot open rear doors from the inside at all. How do they deal with an emergency?

    1. Jason says:

      My frameless window, convertible, had normal type for handles and the glass went down when you opened it, and going down is really more an issue for when you close the door rather than when you open it off done properly. I don’t understand why Tesla had to complicate their setup (adding cost) when everyone is used to pulling up the for handle and it can signal the window to drop, plus open the door mechanically. On all 4 doors that is a simple solution that doesn’t require two separate ways to do it, I hope they change this system in the future.

      1. EVShopper says:

        My frameless window convertible just opens the doors. The windows don’t have to do anything.

        I’m confused by this whole topic.

  22. Dan S says:

    The part about the window gasket being pieced together reveals a lot. That should not have been approved to leave the factory. Of course Tesla is not alone in this type of issue. But when we go beyond the early adopters the criticism could get brutal if this kind of thing is not fixed. Maybe the halo is starting to get tarnished. Still a fan of all BEV’s.

  23. David says:

    I haven’t watched the video yet but the lack of the way to exit the rear seats in the event of power loss in unacceptable. That is a serious safety risk that I’m assuming Tesla will be forced to correct sooner or later. I’m hoping it gets corrected before my reservation comes up.

    1. bro1999 says:

      Agreed. It’s plain stupid.

  24. Nicholas says:

    Now we know Autoline and Munroe are short sellers at least.

    They should let us know how that works out, others have lost over a billion so far betting against Tesla.

  25. scott franco says:

    “it takes a 12 volt battery for the fire department to open the frunk”.

    A jimmy bar does not require power.

    1. HVACman says:

      Emergency responders are advised to not to stick steel jimmy bars into hidden areas with cars loaded with high voltage cables until the power is cut. Therein lies the dilemma that Tesla’s obsession with electronic opening creates.

      1. Carguy says:

        If you read the guide you would know that only one wire needs to be cut. If you can’t access the hood you can cut the wire in the rear pillar. Only one needs to be cut so opening the hood is a non-issue. The guide shows the exact location to cut. The guy in the video didn’t have a clue or was purposely being deceitful.

        1. MattyB says:

          Am I missing something here? Is there some mway to get to a battery in a regular car? If you can’t extricate the driver can you really get to hood release?

  26. Tony Pham says:

    2:56 “I don’t like to do things with 2 hands”
    Then just don’t drive!

    1. HN says:

      “2:56 “I don’t like to do things with 2 hands””

      At 2:50 he actually opened the door with 1 hand. Then complaint that he needs to open the door with 2 hands.

      1. Jason says:

        Yeah, that made me laugh as well. Would have been better video if he was at least showing a lot of pain doing it, but nope he seemed quite Ok about it. And I’m pretty sure you could push with your fingers and hook with your thumb, someone should do a video of that.

        1. Lamata says:

          These 2 detroit Goof Balls are only Trying To Put The Model3 Down . These 2 GOOFS are both detroit ICE Lovers . BTW….In Case of an accident they either open the frunk from inside the car, or they just ‘Pry it open if there is front end damage anyway, in an emergency situations. NO BIG DEAL!! Rescue folks rip Cars apart routinely .

  27. Nicholas says:

    The report will likely cost around $496k like their other ones 🙂

  28. Windbourne says:

    wow.
    Some BS in there.
    1) there are 2 means of killing high voltage lines. He went after the frunk, while ignoring the one that is right at the left rear door.
    In addition, in an ICE car, the hood has to be popped in the drivers area, which is normally hard/impossible to get to (esp with ABs blown). So, how is it done? Jaws (of life). They simply open up the hood. Same thing works on Tesla’s frunk. However, that ability to open the frunk when you have NO electriicty is actually cool.

    2) he has a hurt wrist so is gripping about the door handle. For a NORMAL person, without a hurt wrist, it is TRIVIAL to open the handle. Probably the worst thing is that you need left hand on driver side and right hand on pass side.
    3) then for kids, rather than have them go up front OR through the window, they speak of sending them through the trunk. So, somebody in back has 2 front doors, 4 windows and a trunk closure to go through.
    And that is not enough?
    4) EMS will have seen how to cut the back-side HV line. Sadly, he is commenting about it, while not bothering to actually read anything dealing with it.

    5) as to the panels, I can not comment on it. I hope that it is an early car.

    All in all, that was a BS review, and about the ONLY thing that had ANY MERIT was the panel.
    Sad.

    1. CarGuy says:

      I figured it out after giving it some thought based on my 25 years of fixing cars and dealing with old techs.

      Old techs have a hard time dealing with change. Changing has been happening very quickly. Most older techs can’t deal with it so blame the cars or the people who design them. Obviously this tech did not read the owners manual or first responder guide. Why? He has been doing this for 40 years and knows everything? He takes his frustration out on the car.

      The only other explanation would be that the report was intended to purposely discredit Tesla.

      Both the tech and reporter made fools of themselves. I almost feel bad for them how stupid they sounded and looked.

      1. HVACman says:

        @CarGuy,

        “Evangelical in spreading the gospel of paradigms shifts, concurrent engineering and innovation, Sandy, a frequent speaker and advisor to some of the worlds’ top executives on implementing cultural change, has chaired and spoken at numerous engineering conferences and symposia across North America and the World. He has also lectured at University of Michigan, Stanford, Purdue, University of Rhode Island and other universities. Sandy is the NASA Chairman of the Michigan Small Aircraft Transportation System (MI SATS), a board member for NCAM (National Council for Air Mobility), a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers, Society of Manufacturing Engineers and the Engineering Society of Detroit.”

        That Sandy Munro’s resume. The man who you think is “have a hard time dealing with change”. He is the antithesis of that.

        Did you read my response to your previous comment? It appears you didn’t. Sandy’s comments on the video reflect procedures EXACTLY as described in the first responders’ guide.

        Yes, first responders have many informal ways of addressing things – and thank God they do. Many don’t have every first-responders’ guide ever published – but at their own risk.

        1. Windbourne says:

          wow.
          Nice resume.
          However, as I mentioned elsewhwere, it does not mean that this guy is really up on this. Basically, he is comfortable with old school and based on his comments is either struggling with new school or simply biased against Tesla.
          His comments about the door was very telling.

          Out of all that, about the only area that I have to give it to him is the panels. I would agree that if it was as wide as a thumb that something is wrong, though I will say that I saw a recent caddy with panels being a thumb apart.
          Still, I would guess that he has a LOT more experience on that arena than I (or most others here) do.

        2. CarGuy says:

          https://electrek.co/2017/09/22/tesla-model-3-powertrain-chassis-first-responders-guide/

          Good info for anyone that owns or will own a 3. Or for anyone that will ever work on one. Or for someone that wants to know the facts.

    2. Jason says:

      Sort of look a bit dumb, don’t they? Your can’t open the frunk because you need power, and you need to be in the car to activate that power control. Yet anyone can open the little hatch on front, connect a battery (I assume 12V) and pop the frunk. I seem to recall Tesla owners complaining about how insecure the frunk was because all you need to do was pull a rip cord, don’t store anything valuable in the frunk!
      You can’t open the doors from the inside because of no power, yet you can climb through to the trunk and open it. Isn’t that also a power button? It is not clear if it is a button or a rip cord. Not to mention, if you have child locks on. Not to mention, if you are in an accident that has destroyed the frunk you don’t need to open it anyway. Not to mention if you have 4 doors before even needing to climb into the trunk. Not to mention, if you are in that bad an accident you’re in a bad way most likely.
      And exactly how is an ICE any different? I don’t think anyone even showed my a way to climb into my trunk and open it in case of an emergency, would a normal person even think immediately to do this?
      I agree about the fit and finish comments, but really everyone has their lemon car conversations (either themself or someone they know), or the regular Monday (hangover day) or Friday (can’t be bothered day) build stories, Tesla is no different, and comparing them to Korean manufacturers 10-20yrs ago is actually valid. What do those companies look like now? Tesla is a really young car company in comparison, they do have a lot to learn and hopefully will get there.
      Now, what did they think about the Nissan Leaf HV disconnect? First you need to get inside the car, open a flap, undo a special screw and pull the cord. That takes a lot of effort (no I haven’t read their manual, hopefully there is a much faster way). And I can’t recall they have exterior rip cord to open the bonnet either. Cherry picking!

      1. Windbourne says:

        wow.
        Is that really how they disconnect HV on the leaf?
        I can see that for regular maintenance, but yeah, hopefully, they can just cut it somewhere.

        Problem is, just because somebody is good at ICE and is use to how ICE does things, does not mean that there are not better ways.
        I have to say that I DO like how the M3 opens the frunk. If you have 12V electricity, then you can use fob, phone, or screen.
        If no electricity, then they provide a way to get to the frunk to open it, while solving the locking issues that the other had.

      2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        “I don’t think anyone even showed my a way to climb into my trunk and open it in case of an emergency, would a normal person even think immediately to do this?”

        Of course not. That entire thing is just brain-dead, and if Tesla describes that as a planned emergency procedure, then it looks like somebody (or several somebodies) at Tesla are brain-dead. But perhaps that was a stupidity required by some government regulation? If so, then it’s not Tesla where the finger of blame should be pointed.

        Any normal person in a back seat unable to open the door after an accident would simply climb over the seat into the front, and exit that way. Haven’t we all done that when we were kids? I wouldn’t try to climb out thru the trunk even if I knew it was possible. There might well be stuff in there which would block passage, and at best you’d have to wait until someone walked around in back and opened the trunk.

        * * * * *

        There are real issues with opening the doors and emergency procedures, with the TM3. Too bad this anti-Tesla propaganda video concentrates mostly on trying to create issues where they don’t exist.

        “You can stick your thumb in it!” ought to become a satirical meme showing just how ridiculously exaggerated the FUDster lies about Tesla’s fit-and-finish are!

        Go Tesla!

      3. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        “I seem to recall Tesla owners complaining about how insecure the frunk was because all you need to do was pull a rip cord, don’t store anything valuable in the frunk!”

        I’ve seen those misinformed complaints, too. That’s how you access the tow hooks if you need to tow the car, not how you pop open the frunk from the outside. I don’t give this FUD video credit for much, but it does correctly show that you have to use a 12-vole battery and jumper cables attached to specific places behind pop-out panels, to pop open the frunk from the outside. That’s certainly not going to be easy or quick for a casual thief to accomplish!

  29. bro1999 says:

    “flaws we would see in a Kia in the 90’s”

    OUCH. Kia’s in the 90’s were complete CRAP, not like today.

  30. The Dude says:

    Kia’s are better built today than Hondas or Toyotas.

  31. Bat says:

    This guy absolutely has no understanding of software.
    He only understands manufacturing, and that is not the key strength of a tesla.(at least yet)
    Its beyond his imagination , that along with air bag deployment, the car disconnects high battery automatically , and will unlock all doors as well.

  32. Another Euro point of view says:

    Oh no, not yet another meltdown please, it’s late here & I would like to go to bed now. Yes Model 3 is the best car ever produced and yes that old guy is just an awful lies spreading fudster.

    Hope it’s enough, good night now.

    1. Jason says:

      I don’t think he is a lie spreading Fudster, but it would be good to have some perspective on how other cars work. Can all EV’s be opened/access the HV cut off super easy, or is this a factor of EV’s at the moment? The only HV cut off I know in my Leaf is right in the middle of the passenger compartment, really difficult to access IHO.
      How easy is it to access the bonnet (effectively what the frunk is in this situation). I don’t think there is any manual override to open that on my Leaf.
      The fact of the door handles is to improve the aerodynamics, so they are bold in that. He did open the door one handed, sure it’s not as easy as other door handles, but even normal cars have this issue when your hands are full or you have an injury.
      Comparing it to BMW i3, a stupidly over engineered exercise in seeing what they could get out of the battery at that time, from a well established company with $bil’s to splash on that thought exercise is a bit unfair. With all their carbon fibre space age frame it really hasn’t gotten that much more range than any other EV of the same era, and it’s pretty impractical as well.
      Tesla isn’t the best, but there are some really great things they are bringing to the table, and this is a worst case scenario which every vehicle and driver could be faced with.

    2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      Another Euro… said:

      “…yes that old guy is just an awful lies spreading fudster.”

      It’s nice to see you saying something about a Tesla-related matter which is actually true, for once. Too bad you don’t actually recognize this Truth.

  33. Bill Howland says:

    Well, we’ll have to see what insurance companies charge for this car. I see 2 big issues.
    1).
    Getting to the hv disconnect – something the Fire Depts are all trained to do within seconds, requires an additional step of popping the front bumper access and applying an extra 12 volts on the dangling leads. How many extra seconds this takes would have to be tested.

    2). Getting orphaned in the back seats is a bit of a problem since only the front seats have manual releases.

    It would be interesting to see what insurance companies say regarding this kind of thing.

    But in general, other than poor fit and finish – this looks like the best Tesla made yet.

    1. CarGuy says:

      You don’t have to open the hood on the Model 3 to disconnect the HV battery. You can cut the wire in the rear pillar. The guide says you only have to cut one wire not both. Opening the hood is not an issue.

      https://electrek.co/2017/09/22/tesla-model-3-powertrain-chassis-first-responders-guide/

      The rear doors have to be opened from the outside if there is a lack of 12 VOLT power. That means the driver or someone else has to let them out or they have to climb over the front seat to escape. Not the best but the same as a child lock engaged in any other car.

      1. Bill Howland says:

        No offense, but I’d like to see an insurance company chime in on this.

        Model S’s and X’s have far higher insurance costs than other maakes.

        I’d be interested in a detailed analysis by an insurance company and/or what the rates are. Such information should be available very soon, since all the ‘3’s coming off the line need to be insured, so I’m sure serious people employed there have already decided or are currently calculating what to charge.

  34. Chris Denver says:

    Paramedic in Denver, CO-
    Fire departments don’t look for a button to open hoods, they shove spreaders in the headlights and force open the hood. No delay on this car, possibly a delay in identifying the trim panel to move and where to cut the power wire. Surprised Munro doesn’t know this. The rear power cable is a secondary in case the front of the vehicle is crashed into a building/whatever.

    In general, unless a hazard is observed, (sparking, fire) patient care starts right away and the person is removed from the car immediately unless they are entrapped. Most times the battery cable is not cut on an ICE car for minor/moderate accidents, so the car can be driven to the side of the road. If an extrication is needed battery cables are definitely cut, ICE or BEV.

    1. Reason speaking says:

      +1

  35. scott says:

    Stop drinking the Koolaid. Tesla has quality issues and some questionable engineering choices as do most first year cars. These guys do this for a living, they know of what they speak. It’s their job to call these things out and glad they do so they can be addressed.

    1. Nix says:

      Stop sucking the Koch, the existence of anti-EV interest groups is well documented. They have their own interests that align them against EV’s to produce anti-EV propaganda. If you willfully swallow it, that says more about you than EV’s.

      1. Lamata says:

        +1 Yea ! Exactly!

        1. WARREN says:

          Anti EV, Por Detroit? So exactly why would they love the German Built i3?

          1. Lamata says:

            WO Wren, Because they got paid enough money to make it worth their while and to say they like it , WO Wren….

  36. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

    When you find a review which is a conversation between two guys who seem to be competing to see who can put the most negative spin on their descriptions of a car, much more negative than anything we have seen in any other review, then we need to ask if the reviewer has some hidden agenda or axe to grind.

    Given all the anti-Tesla FUD churned out all over the internet, by Tesla short-sellers and Big Oil shills and hard-right wingnut think tanks, it’s not hard to come up with reasons why this review might have less than honest motives behind it, and why it appears to be not even remotely objective.

    * * * * *

    I personally am troubled by the need to access an emergency release lever to open the front doors on the TM3 in case of power failure, which may happen in an accident. However, I was relieved to see in this video that the emergency release lever isn’t far from the normal release button, and can be accessed sitting in a normal position. I had read a claim that the emergency release is hidden behind speaker grilles… someone must have gotten mixed up.

    The complete lack of any emergency release for the rear doors is rather more troubling, but the way it’s described here is just Ludicrous™. It describes kids in the back seat having to wait until someone walks to the trunk and pushes a button, after which supposedly they pull the seats forward and crawl out the trunk.

    I dunno about you, Gentle Reader, but when I was a kid, on more than one occasion I had to crawl from the back seat into the front, and exit that way. It’s hard to believe that kids today wouldn’t do the same. It would certainly be much easier than the procedure shown here!

    I’m also appalled at how the guy in this video says you have to use two hands to use the door handle to open the door — but he admits his hand had been broken! Well that’s too bad for him, but how is that a problem with the car?!?

    Sometimes a review says a lot about what’s being reviewed. Other times, it says a lot more about the reviewer. This is clearly in the latter category.

    This review needs a review: It gets an “F”, both for objectivity and for honesty.

    1. Ambulator says:

      When you were a kid there weren’t car seats to lock you in.

    2. Bob N says:

      Nobody can get out of the back seats of my car without climbing into the front when my child locks are engaged even if there is 12 volt power. It must be safe and legal. Every mainstream car has child locks on the rear doors. It is called a safety item, like a back up camera. Who knows? They might even be required.

      I guess all car makers are wrong or stupid for installing child locks.

  37. Nix says:

    So who hired them and bought the car? Who paid probably $70-100K for one of the first cars, and then likely paid double that much for the teardown?

    They are pretending like they did this for charity as a public service. But that kind of money isn’t spent without an agenda.

  38. John G says:

    JD Power, Consumer Reports, and now this tear-down are all saying the same thing, poor quality and questionable design decisions on various Tesla models. Look it up. But I guess it’s easier to shoot the messenger, must be a massive worldwide conspiracy against the poor little boy-genius Elon. For cars sold at luxury car prices you just don’t expect such poor fit and finish. You can choose to ignore it if owning a Tesla makes you feel like a pioneer, a rebel, “different”, virtuous, rich, a hero in the battle against climate change, etc. Fine, but you don’t need to attack the motives of impartial reviews simply pointing out the problems.

    1. HN says:

      @John G, “For cars sold at luxury car prices you just don’t expect such poor fit and finish.”

      BMW, Mercedes … have better fit&finish ? BMW, Mercedes … have better reliability rating by Consumer Reports ?

      All Model 3 reviews are mostly nit picking, so far none says they dn’t like the car.

      Which car company has the most customer satisfaction ? BMW ? GM ? Ford ?

  39. Terawatt says:

    Having watched the video and read the comments I am now another step closer to cancelling my reservation, or at the very least change the plan to sell the car immediately at a small surplus instead of keeping it for myself.

    A lot of commenters here say the video is dishonest, factually incorrect or misleading – by talking about why they made the video and who they imagine paid for it. Not one has offered a convincing explanation of what is wrong in the video or even provided any sources showing who did pay for it.

    I think it’s fair to point out that this does not mean the Model 3 is an unsafe car. Lots of other considerations go into that. But nor did they say anything of the sort. Could they have been more explicit about what an incomplete assessment this was? Yes, but in truth nobody should get the wrong idea here. It’s a preview video before a teardown and they haven’t even got started yet, and that was points out at the very beginning.

    Some people can’t bear anyone criticizing Tesla and immediately think they must have terrible motives. Unfortunately they are becoming numerous enough to be a reason not to be associated with the “Tesla community” at all, even though I’m sure most Tesla owners aren’t like this at all and happily accept Tesla is not perfect.

    1. bro1999 says:

      It’s hilarious to see the TSLA fanbois freak out about any perceived slight to their precious company. It never fails.

      What’s the opposite of a stock shorter? A fluffer?

    2. Six Electrics says:

      All Tesla owners know their cars are not perfect. A subset, like me, refuse to accept that 🙂

    3. TeslaPlease says:

      Elon has been treated too casually by the press and it will not serve Tesla well in the long run. He should be confronted directly about clear production QA issues coming out of that factory and put to task for it.

      He said the Model 3 quality would be better and he should be called on it. Unfortunately, I fear he can’t resolve many QA issues easily because there are probably a laundry list of shortcuts (non-traditional beta testing, etc.) that were taken to move the production process along faster – to please the investors and those decisions are not easily correctable once production has commenced.

      Sadly, too much is at stake to obtain candor and honesty from this executive of Tesla. Instead we get flamethrowers and tweets.

    4. HN says:

      @Terawatt, “why they made the video and who they imagine paid for it”

      Did you watch the BMW i3 review from the same company ? This video tells me they are paid for by BMW.

      If the i3 is so good then BMW should be able to sell it in the hundreds of thousands a year.

  40. Cruising says:

    Let me know when you sell it! I am looking to a long range EV that has a high mpge and a good crash test rating.

  41. Leptoquark says:

    “The newfangled door handles these silicon whippersnappers come up with, I’ve never seen anything like ’em. I just don’t understand these new cars…..”

  42. BillT says:

    They raise a couple of valid points (I do think there should be mechanical releases for the rear doors) but I would still rather be in a Model 3 in a bad crash than an equivalently sized ICE. The Model 3 has physics (extra mass) on its side plus I doesn’t have a lump of red hot metal up front that could end up on my lap.

  43. TeslaPlease says:

    Who Is Responsible for Tesla Automotive Operations Quality Control? Why must we always hear from Elon? Time for Elon to let others with more auto manufacturing experience in Tesla free to do what they do best. I want Tesla to succeed and only focused attention will get them there.

    I have seen several examples sitting in Tesla stores that have misaligned frunks and trunks. So, it is obviously still a problem. What disturbs me more is WHY IS TESLA LETTING THESE ISSUES LEAVE THE FACTORY UNRESOLVED? Where is basic quality control and remediation?

    My hunch: Tesla is placing priority on being able to say to the market we produced x number of Model 3’s and stave off criticism of not meeting production goals again while claiming defects are rare and infrequent.

    With only one operating production line, any problem with the automated process means production must stop, changes applied, tested, and production resumed – time consuming. This is not going to be pretty.

    If Model 3 production is running 24/7, where are all these cars being stored? I suspect a large number of vehicles being produced are not initially tied to a specific customer.

    There needs to be greater transparency and scrutiny of the Model 3 production – not less. I wish Elon would focus on quality issues with the Model 3 and less about flamethrowers and trips to Mars.

  44. Leon says:

    Why does a modern EV still have a 12 volt electrical system and a lead acid battery?

  45. Rich says:

    The guy reeks of bias… how ridiculous.

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