Recollecting my Model X

Along with some communications about the loaner car I was using, or perhaps because of them, I received a message yesterday that my car would be ready to be retrieved on today (Thursday). We made arrangements for my daughter to be picked-up at daycare so I could go to the service center on my way home for work…and I waited. At 3pm I had not yet heard anything, and I watched as the rain gathered and began to pour down; I was not looking forward to driving the loaner home in a torrent, given its evidenced propensity to lose traction in the dry if Tesla were to miss yet another deadline. A little after 4pm, and the weather letting-up, I began to leave, just seeing an eMail at 4:14 that my car was ready. Change of plans, and headed straight to the dealer.

An Aside

When you are in a Tesla vehicle, and you ask to "navigate to the Dedham service center", you would think it would offer to take you to the Dedham Tesla service center, wouldn't you? Instead, it was so sure I wanted to go to a mechanic called Dedham Service Center at the edge of Dedham, that it didn't even bother to show me suggestions. After that short excursion, I arrived at the service center, found my car, opening it with the app so that I could transfer the car seat, and went inside to relinquish the keys to the loaner car before being assessed surcharges for having it too long (yes, the eMail that told me my car was ready ended with the threat of surcharges if I didn't return the loaner in a timely manner).

What was Fixed

Nobody was around to greet me outside, so I walked into the service center, where there was a single person manning the recently re-arranged desks. He asked for my name, I provided my last name as well as the first three letters; he asked me for my name, I provided it and the first three letters; he asked me how to spell it, and I couldn't help betray a little frustration as I repeated the first two letters more slowly and he was able to find the paperwork.

We walked through the items. They did appear to replace the inner door panel, which looks new. They didn't quite fix the rivet according to the description he read, as much as work around it by adding a different fastener. The windscreen was on order, so I should expect to hear back from them to schedule service (he couldn't give me a time-frame, which is just as well given previous guesses). They had tried to buff-out the scratch, but to no avail. They adjusted the charger-port door.

Everything else essentially could not be reproduced. They performed a factory reset on the MCU and hoped this fixed a bunch of issues. Annoyingly, and again I was betrayed by my frustration as I new the guy reading the sheet had nothing to do with the evaluation, the tech had listed the issues with the Web/HTML browser as being unable to be reproduced, even though I had demonstrated this during intake, and the person doing the intake reproduced the issue as well.

One useful bit of information, was that there was a known issue with iWatch and iPhone that results in the outgoing audio issue; but he had not details on that. He told me that I'd get a call explaining the issue tomorrow (I suggested eMail would be easier, and that the person he mentioned had alrady been communicating with me via eMail, so that shouldn't be too difficult).

I asked for a copy of the paperwork, but was told I'd have it eMailed to me. With that, I got back my keyfob and went to my car. The sun was now breaking through the clouds, much like as I left on the first day I drove my Model X.

Driving Home: 2018.26

It was nice having working audio for the ride home after hearing only tire squeal for the week in the loaner. I re-paired my Apple iPhone media device, and started streaming Pantera's Vulgar display of power which sounded the best I'd heard it in this car. Maybe they actually fixed the speakers?

I looked around a little more. The factory reset had kept one profile, interestingly enough and with my name mis-spelled, so everything saved to that profile (such as driver seat positioning) was still intact. My home address and work address were there, but no other points of interest. Suspension/ride-height settings were reset, and all saved locations for raising height were gone. My Model X lacked a name once again, so I renamed it. Out of curiosity, I checked the privacy settings. I had disabled all data sharing the day I dropped-off the car; when I it back, both data sharing options were now set to "yes", i.e. sharing data with Tesla and its partners.

Finally, I read the release notes of the new software version. Tesla had changed the wording for the AutoPilot warning from "hold steering wheel" to a more verbose, but accurate, command to essentially jiggle the wheel a little bit. In practice, it seemed that the warning was coming-up less frequently than it had under the previous version I had.

Experience Summary

I'll warn you that surcharges for the loaner may kick in at that point

The eMail threatening surcharges, especially after having a poor experience so far, left yet another sourt taste in my mouth. A lot of it was the phrasing, but also that at no point had any surcharges been listed (were there other screens on the touchpad I signed but wasn't offered to hold?), and up until about 20 hours ago, I hadn't even been given a rough timeline for when the vehicle would be ready ("maybe next week", "through next week", "at least until Wednesday" were all offered by the same person).

The service experience, more so than anything else Tesla feels like an old-school dealer-with-service-center experience. Communication and time estimates (cost was fully covered by warranty in this case) were sub-par compared to the best independent service centers. Since I was retrieving my car during an all-hands meeting, I was unable to talk to anybody familiar with the service or known outstanding issues; this was disappointing and a first for me, with respect to vehicles I'd had serviced, where I have always been able to talk to either the person directly working on the car or a manager who was familiar with what work was performed.