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Re-Thinking the Service Plan

In light of today's announcement, I'm rethinking the service plan. I just bought the 4+4 plan, but the announcement strongly implies that there really won't be much need for service for at least the first couple of years, and now that a full menu of annual service isn't required to maintain warranty protection, the economics seem to favor wait and see (at least for those that don't put on obscene mileage). What do my far more brilliant fellow owners think?

I think you and I got suckered into buying an expensive service plan we didn't need. I can't think of anywhere near $450/year worth on non-warranty service I could possibly need on this car once tires are excluded.

I just posted a question to the bulletin board, asking if we can get a refund for the service plans. I'll be very surprised if they refuse to do so. Otherwise, we get penalized for acting too quickly in response to TM's offers and next time around, everyone will freeze until we're sure we've heard the final word from Elon. Certainly, they don't intend to further spank the early adopters by denying us the same flexibility that the latest and future owners will enjoy.

We got suckered big time. $3,800 for a prepaid 4+4 plan to maintain a warranty that we now don't need to maintain. WTF Tesla? I could give a flying rip about getting to drive a fully loaded P85 for the few hours they will have my car for the annual checkup.


I just pressed the purchase button this morning. Yes, this morning (didn't read about the upcoming announcement until a bit later). I could have held off for just a few more hours...

Same boat as @tsx_5, but I did this last night. I am trying to convince myself the 4+4 is for my piece of mind, but it's not working right now. Did I make a mistake? Did I drink the coolaid too soon? talk to me.

already commented on the blog post, I hope they'll do the right thing and refund it.

I think 'suckered' is a ridiculously negative attribution to a company that just made the announcement they did.

I just got off the phone with Owner Assistance - and then pushed the button and purchased the 4+4 service plan and the 4 year extended warranty.

While the combination of the warranty and the pre-paid plan covers everything except the tire replacement (and that's covered under the now discontinued tire & wheel plan, if the tire is damaged), the $600 annual inspection may not cover all of the costs, for items such as tire rotation/balance (every 6000 miles) or brake fluid replacement.

Before making a decision on purchasing or requesting a refund for the service plan, you may want to call Owner Assistance or talk to someone in a Service Center.

I think for piece of mind I am fine with keeping the 4+4 as I see the announcement talks about upgrades to hardware, inspection, wheel alignments, and good preventative maintenance. My game plan has always been to keep the Model S for 8-10 years, so routine service was always in the cards. The 4+4 averages $450 per year or every 12500 miles, and even though those without the plan will pay $600, who's to say in a few years $600 might not go up to $750 or more, as that may be what it costs for TM to break even on service costs.

I am comfortable with the decision, just needed reassurance, which comes with more knowledge on the plans and services.

I just read the cancellation clause in both service plans, regular and extended. We have between 30-60 days to cancel depending on which state we live in. We get a full refund as long as we haven't had a claim or one in the works. I bought a 4+4 on 3/27, live in CA and have 60 days to cancel. I'm seriously thinking about doing that. I will wait a few days to see if TM puts out anything for those who have already purchased a service plan. I'm a low mileage driver. If TM were to drop the every 12 months requirement, I would keep the plans and take the car in every 12.5K miles. Alternatively, I have paid for 8 service visits. If TM were to say bring it in 8 times when you feel the need for service, I would keep the plans under that circumstance too.

@stevenmaifert - you proved me right - my fellow owners are indeed more brilliant than I. Reading the agreement - what a concept! Thank you.

DTsea +1.

I bought 4+4 plan and plan to keep it. At $450/service in prepaid option, i think it will be nice to get it checked and get some hardware upgrades even if it amounts to one brakepad change in 8yrs.

There was no mention about the sw upgrades in the announcement. Wonder if you will still get that without annual service.

+1 stevenmaifert: 8x visits if mileage is < 12k mi.

Why on earth would anyone spend 85k+ on a car and not be willing to spend 450 bucks a year to keep it top operating condition.

Is annual service required to continue getting software updates pushed to the car? Any hardware updates in the works that might come as part of annual service?

I asked about a loaner car and I was told you only get one if the anticipated time for repair is > 4 hours. I asked about the anticipated time for the annual service and I was told it should take 3.5 hours... so no loaner for the annual service.

David Trushin +1

I'm happy paying the $600/yr for the regular 4 year service plan. Tesla really does do hardware upgrades. And the car is a little bit more complicated that people think. There are three cooling radiators in the front, a mission critical AC compressor, complicated fluidic valves and sensors, a 12V battery and charging system that must run correctly or else the car can't turn on. Then you have all the mechanical suspension and sensors. And the motor/inverter which should be reliable but is also brand new, and then the battery itself.

Update on refund from Tesla

Hello there again, I received a little more information about refunding your service plan you purchased. In the state of California, you can ask for refund within 60 days of purchase and refund will depreciate 10% every month beyond 60 days. I hope this answers your question, the gentleman I was in contact with while I was speaking to you did say he could clarify if need be, also he can process the refund if you so choose. If that be the case please let me know what the best number is which I can send to him and he would be able to call you directly.

A little perspective: I visit the dentist twice a year for cleaning, x-rays, and a "free" toothbrush. Cleaning by the hygienist takes about an hour, the dentist pops in for 5 minutes to check gums and overall health of my teeth. I haven't had a cavity for 45 years, so this is just biennial maintenance and oral health checkup. Cost per year about $500.

I'm going to call the dentist to see if they will service the Model S (smile)

Dtesla, I would wait a bit to let the policies settle in. My guess is that if you called 4 service people about the loaner, you would get 5 different answers.

@shop - you are only paying $450 per year for the service plan. It's $600 per year, assuming you bring the car in every year for service without a plan.

If recurring service is not required to maintain warranty, than it becomes a recommendation only.
If and when we can truly lease the MS for 3-4 years, as typical of other cars, I for one would take advantage of not having to pay for any service during the lease period, since non is mandatory anymore, and I don't own the car. Better still, all the hassle of going for service every year, getting a loaner/rental/ride, etc. goes away.

I was reading the agreement again, cause I didn't remember anything about a 30/60 refund period... And I found it to say this (section J Cancellation)

This Agreement may not be cancelled by You or Tesla and no return of the purchase price or any other fees or taxes will be provided by Tesla to You. This Agreement is not being sold in any jurisdiction in which the sale or performance of this Agreement is not permitted pursuant to applicable law at the time of purchase. Any such sale is void ab initio and of no force and effect and will not be deemed a cancellation. You will receive a full refund provided no services have been provided by Tesla.

I'm wondering if Tesla is getting better at making agreements specific to applicable states.

FYI...I stopped by and talked with my local service person today.
They are approximately an hour plus away. My biggest concern was not necessarily the cost of the plans but the time involved with bringing the car in, getting a loaner or waiting for the service...Basically blow the day....IF you get Ranger service with the service plan they will come and pick your car up, leave you a roadster or another S and take the car up to service center and return when they have completed the work.
This is an expensive car that is relatively new. It might go thru brakes every 12K miles..who knows...service plan seems like a good plan


I've been low-key on this one... just because the car is *new* doesn't mean it wasn't designed for reliability. And if it was designed, then they have a number assigned to it -- ie they know (to a high level of confidence) what the reliability of thier product is. I doubt Elon launched a rocket with people on it without knowing it's reliability -- and that was *new* too. To answer your impied question -- "who knows" -- Tesla does. Elon's statement today reflects his expectation that the cars coming out of his company will have reliability as a critical part of the design. That's something I would expect from a car costing 3x my Honda Accord, and was the main reason I was previously disappointed with the whole Service Plan issue/pricing.

Minor point: lots of references to $450 / yr prepaid service plans above. Isn't it actually $475 / yr?

yes, 1900 is the prepaid 4 year price, thus 475 per year.

Just to clarify: $1900 / 4 = $475.