The driving and overall ownership experience of an electric vehicle is far different than that of an internal combustion engine. No more trips to the gas station or maintenance like oil changes, fuel filters and the like. The 2013 Tesla Model S represents the pinnacle of electric automobile development, and Tesla is developing a service plan to accommodate it.
Getting in the Model S and driving is a whole different experience – a key fob in your pocket and weight in the drivers seat causes the car to turn on, ready to be driven. There is nothing to indicate when the car is in drive though. Most buyers are used to a slight “creep” in cars with an automatic transmission. At stoplights we’re all used to holding the brake down so a car won’t move forward ever so slightly. The Model S doesn’t have this, and Tesla is readying a software update to add this functionality.
They are adding this based on owner feedback. As the first cars are being rolled out to customers, Tesla has released details on its after-sales program. A network of Service Centers being opened across the country to provide top-level service for Model S owners. Tesla says it is opening the first centers based on where the initial 12,200 cars will be delivered. The company says that by March 2013 90 percent of current reservation holders will be within 100 miles of a service center, and 80 percent within 50 miles. That’s an impressive number. The Tesla Rangers program is also available to pick up cars at an owner’s home or office, wherever they might be located.
Under Tesla’s plan, each Model S will have an inspection every 12,500 miles. The inspection will include an examination of the car’s steering, suspension, brakes, tires and lighting. Between that, the car will send updates to Tesla with diagnostic issues and it will alert owners accordingly. The software-centric approach means that Tesla can update the car and check these issues out remotely. It really is opening up a whole new frontier in automotive service. Tesla’s one-year service plan starts at $600 and covers a one year or 12,500 miles. It includes any replacement items, excluding tires. A long-term four-year plan is also available for $1,900 and it spans four years or 50,000 miles. If you’re a good distance from a service center, the company offers a $2,400 four-year Tesla Service and unlimited Ranger Service plan. Tesla is demonstrating that it knows how to listen to customers, as well as thinking everything out like a premium automaker should. Flawless work so far guys.