Consumer Reports Refuses To Recommend Tesla’s Model 3

Chris White | Energy Reporter

Consumer Reports said Thursday night that it cannot recommend the Tesla Model 3 after customers complained about some of the vehicle’s poorly manufactured parts.

“[Consumer Reports] members say they’ve identified a number of problems with their cars, including issues with its body hardware, as well as paint and trim,” Consumer Reports noted in its report. The report comes after Tesla CEO Elon Musk admitted in 2018 that the company was going through “production hell” as it put together thousands of Model 3s.

“Consumers expect their cars to last — and not be in the repair shop. That’s why reliability is so important,” Jake Fisher, senior director of automotive testing at Consumer Reports, told CNN reporters. Tesla claimed many of the problems noted in the report have already been addressed.

“The vast majority of these issues have already been corrected through design and manufacturing improvements, and we are already seeing a significant improvement in our field data,” a company representative told the publication. The Model 3 roll out was plagued with several hiccups.

FILE PHOTO: A Tesla logo is seen at a groundbreaking ceremony of Tesla Shanghai Gigafactory in Shanghai, China January 7, 2019. REUTERS/Aly Song/File Photo

Many of Tesla’s die-hard customers gave up on the electric car maker while the Silicon Valley company struggled to deliver undamaged vehicles to people who’ve been waiting years for the inexpensive Model 3. (RELATED: ‘I lost All Faith’: Tesla’s Slow Production Rate Is Disillusioning Musk’s Fan Base) 

Florida resident Jim Fyfe, for instance, paid a $2,500 deposit in June 2018 to order a black $70,000 Model 3. He was given a delivery date in early September but was later told the car was still in California at the delivery date. After several delays, Tesla informed Fyfe that his Model 3 had been involved in an accident in transit.

Other prospective Tesla owners shared similar experiences. Jonathan Berent paid a $1,000 deposit in 2016 to reserve a Model 3 – he paid another $2,500 this year for a Performance version. He was told in September that his car was at Tesla’s Fremont, California, plant. A sales representative showed Berent the car, but there was a mix-up.

Despite the starts and stops, Tesla reached its Model 3 production mark. The company announced in October 0218 that it reached its target of making between 50,000 to 55,000 Model 3s for the three-month period.

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