First experience using Tesla’s roadside assistance since I purchased my Model S. Granted I purchased a used Model S but still dropped some serious cash for the thing along with making sure it had the CPO warranty and roadside.
I’ve always been a little nervous driving a car with no spare. I’m the type of person that will replace his own oil (fortunately no need for that now), make repairs when needed, and of course change a spare on the side of the road. You know, the typical car ownership experience. When I purchased this car with no spare I figured the roadside assistance would at least be nice to have.
However, after getting a flat tire in a sketchy area in Phoenix (trust me, there’re some sketchy places here) I’m rethinking the whole spare thing.
My Model S alerted me “tire pressure very low, pull over safely”. So I did then walked around my car to evaluate the situation. Sure enough, my rear passenger tire was done. My 21″ rim was pretty much sitting on the road.
This was in the middle of rush hour mind you, and this time I was looking to take some side roads to get to another part of the highway.
I dial the Tesla roadside number which you can find when tapping the Tesla “T” logo on the top of the dash screen.
After selecting roadside assistance in the voice prompt I was then presented with hold music for 45 minutes until a rep finally picked up. I stated my situation then he put me on hold for another 5 minutes or so to see whom in the area would be available. Since I was in Phoenix, I assumed there must be an assortment of trucks to assist.
“We can have someone out to tow you in about an hour and a half”? he stated. “Dude, I’ve already been on hold for 45+ minutes and you want me to wait that long for someone just to get to me?” I replied… I was pretty upset, to say the least. Not just that I didn’t want a tow, I wanted a spare. He did state that the tech would be able to get a “universal” spare for me vs having to tow my vehicle which I agreed to. The agreement is Tesla will loan you a spare tire/rim for 3 days then you need to return it to a Tesla service center. I know all the details since I actually received paperwork in my email to e-sign.
So I waited and waited, watching what most likely were a couple drug deals at the Circle K here in Phoenix along with some odd ones staring at me wondering why this electric vehicle is just hanging out at the Circle K the tow truck arrived.
I didn’t know if I was going to get an official Tesla branded truck or some Joe. It was a fairly large tow truck with a single Tesla rim chained to the bed. The tech greeted me, assessed the wheel, then got to work.
Once completed I was on my way. So, at the end of the day, I figured I could probably find a better way to resolve this in the future vs relying on Tesla roadside to help out since the whole ordeal took about 3-4 hours out of my day for a simple rim swap. I’m appreciative of the service and enjoy owning a Tesla very much but again, the amount of money people drop on these vehicles and the type of service you get simply doesn’t match.
I feel Tesla’s growing too fast and at the moment seems to be going through some growing pains of customer service. Time to up your game Elon!