Tesla Repairs Roadster Just Before Warranty Expires (Photo via TeslaMotorsClub.com member Bolosky)Enlarge Photo
When you buy any new car, it comes with a warranty which guarantees the automaker will replace or fix any defects in the car for a set period of time.
Generally, warranty repairs are carried out when the car’s buyer notices something wrong with their car, but for one Tesla Roadster owner, his all-electric sports car was stripped apart and rebuilt just weeks before its warranty ran out thanks to the keen eye of a Tesla mechanic.
With just a few hundred miles before the 36,000 mile warranty ran out on his bright red Roadster, Seattle-based software engineer Bill Bolosky had Tesla book his car in for its 36,000 mile service.
But when the local Tesla Ranger -- the name given to Tesla’s team of mobile mechanics who service its cars -- gave Bolosky’s car a thorough examination, he noticed a barely-visible crack in the welding of the $109,000 car’s subframe assembly.
“He told me that if the crack got bigger and the weld broke that the car would start making a clicking noise,” wrote Bolosky on the Tesla Motors Forum. “While he could have done nothing or just redone the weld, Tesla’s policy is to replace stuff if it’s at all wrong. So he decided to replace the entire subframe assembly.”
2011 Tesla Roadster 2.5
2011 Tesla Roadster 2.5Enlarge Photo
For the curious, that rear subframe holds everything from the rear axle and 185 kilowatt motor through to some of the Tesla Roadster's power electronics and 53 kilowatt-hour battery pack.
As a consequence, replacing it involved a full strip-down and rebuild of Bolosky’s Roadster, a time-consuming job, especially to replace something which had a crack less than one inch in it.
In an ideal world, any defect spotted while a car is under warranty would be replaced and fixed.
But what stands out in this story is the way in which a Tesla employee went beyond the call of duty to ensure that a tiny fault -- which hadn’t even started to noticeably manifest itself -- was dealt with when so many other mechanics would have left it to get worse.
Then again, when you spend six figures on a sports car, we’d like to think that kind of attention to detail comes as standard.