It's unusual for a CEO to express doubts about a new vehicle he's just launching—especially if it's only the company's third-ever vehicle.

But at a January presentation in Chambourcy, France, Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk said, "I'm not sure anyone should have built or designed this car, because it's so difficult to make."

He was referring to the 2016 Tesla Model X electric car, Tesla's first crossover utility vehicle—"falcon doors" and all—which went into production last fall.

DON'T MISS: Tesla Model X Spreads Its (Falcon) Wings: Production Details Revealed (Sep 2015)

After multiple delays, buyers and fans alike were eager to see the Model X in production.

But with early examples of the car now on the road for a few months, build-quality issues are starting to crop up.

Owners are complaining online about everything from doors that won't open, to an under-performing heater.

2016 Tesla Model X

2016 Tesla Model X

Front doors refusing to open were cited by multiple in owners in posts on different Tesla forums rounded up by Seeking Alpha (subscription required).

Owners also complained of build-quality issues, including poorly-aligned panels, gaps in molding and—in one case—a gap in the door jamb that appeared to be filled with putty.

Similar issues were reported by a Model X owner interviewed by Consumer Reports.

ALSO SEE: Why Tesla Model X Electric SUV Is Late: Range, Towing, 'Falcon Doors' (Feb 2015)

Michael Karpf told the magazine that the driver's door on his Model X would sometimes fail to open, and that the window wouldn't open properly because it kept getting caught in a piece of chrome trim.

That wasn't all, though. One of the rear falcon doors on Karpf's car initially refused to close, and then on another occasion banged into an overhang.

The doors' complex hinges are supposed to prevent them from opening too wide in low spaces so that doesn't happen.

2016 Tesla Model X

2016 Tesla Model X

The Model X's heating system also proved totally inadequate, and its giant central touchscreen display froze on occasion, Karpf said.

While frustrating for owners, these issues aren't entirely unexpected.

Despite the Model X's drawn-out development process, Tesla was still finalizing deals with suppliers shortly before production was supposed to start.

That meant certain components likely weren't available in production-ready form when the first cars were built.

So to meet its claim of making deliveries before the end of 2015, Tesla likely used hand-fabricated substitutes for some components.

2016 Tesla Model X

2016 Tesla Model X

Thanks to attention-grabbing features like the "Falcon" doors, the Model X is also a fairly complex vehicle to build.

Tesla blamed its own "hubris" in adding so many new features to the Model X for the slow pace of deliveries so far this year.

The company also experienced plenty of glitches with early Model S sedans, including retractable door handles that refused to emerge from the bodywork.

It appears to have addressed those issues in current cars, but reliability data isn't yet available for the most recent vehicles.

Quality glitches afflict most carmakers launching new models, in fact.

2016 Tesla Model X launch in Fremont, California

2016 Tesla Model X launch in Fremont, California

Consumer Reports recommends against buying any new or redesigned model in its first year because of the increased likelihood of quality issues.

That's a problem for Tesla customers, who are often early adopters driven to get the latest technology first.

They've shown considerable patience with the company over past issues, and likely will again.

But buyers and shoppers hope that Tesla has learned its lesson on not overreaching as it works to bring its Model 3 car into production.

The company is targeting late 2017 for the production start of that four-door electric sedan, with a 200-plus-mile range and a starting price of $35,000.


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