HolyCoast: The Electric Brick

Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Electric Brick

Got $40,000 for a new battery for your electric car?
Tesla Motors' lineup of all-electric vehicles — its existing Roadster, almost certainly its impending Model S, and possibly its future Model X — apparently suffer from a severe limitation that can largely destroy the value of the vehicle. If the battery is ever totally discharged, the owner is left with what Tesla describes as a "brick": a completely immobile vehicle that cannot be started or even pushed down the street. The only known remedy is for the owner to pay Tesla approximately $40,000 to replace the entire battery. Unlike practically every other modern car problem, neither Tesla's warranty nor typical car insurance policies provide any protection from this major financial loss. Here's how it happens.

Despite this "brick" scenario having occurred several times already, Tesla has publicly downplayed the severity of battery depletion risk to both existing owners and future buyers. Privately though, Tesla has gone to great lengths to prevent this potentially brand-destroying incident from happening more often, including possibly engaging in GPS tracking of a vehicle without the owner's knowledge.
Read the whole article for additional info plus updates from Tesla as they scramble to do damage control.

I'm sorry, but the world is not ready for electric cars. The technology just hasn't come far enough to make them more than worthless.

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