I received my Model S today and I am very happy with the car. I have driven it home (see delivery story) and parked it. I will take it out for its safety inspection tomorrow. I am happy with the car itself.
Now the delivery process has some issues I want to discuss and bring to light.
I was out of town the first week of my delivery window so my car was sent from the plant 2/4 so delivery would take 5-7 days and would be after I returned on 2/8. I was told to expect a call 24-48 hours prior to delivery from the driver.
I finally did get a call from the driver (Bill from St. Louis) 2/11 at 5pm telling me that my car was going to be delivered the next day. He did not know when but thought it was going to be after 12pm. I asked if I could take delivery the following day as my schedule was more flexible then and he told me that would cost me extra money (makes sense as he has to wait and could be getting other loads to deliver). He was to call me on my cell in the morning to finalize place and time.
I had a packed day at work and tried to open up my afternoon to allow some time to take delivery the next day.
I did not get a call from the driver in the am but the shipping company manager (Vince) called my home (not the number I had given the driver to call) and spoke with my wife to try to help coordinate delivery. I called him and got an earful of some of the problems from in delivering these cars his perspective. He said that he is spending too much time on the phone arranging these deliveries and pointed to areas of improvement (see below).
My driver called me at 1pm telling me that he was advised (? by whom) that he could not make the delivery near my office or home and that it would be best if I came to him. He made his last delivery near a highway close to an industrial area and said that I could come there and get the car.
I agreed to this, left my office, and got my car and am happy overall with everything.
Here are some of the things for Tesla and customers to consider, IMHO
1. Communication from Tesla to both consumer and shipping company is minimal. Shipping companies get a name, address and a single telephone number. They could use more contact info like preferred contact method, etc. to help them communicate with the buyer. We could use name of shipping company and where the car is and a better expectation of the actual hand-off. I still have not heard from my delivery specialist or gotten her contact info (although I had asked for this).
2. Tesla is using some new shipping arrangements where Tesla ships to hubs, then these shipping companies are picking up the cars for local delivery from the hubs. Vince told me he had problems where his driver goes to pick up cars from a hub only to find out after a while that some of the cars where already picked up by the buyer wasting his driver's time. I would have liked to have known if I could have gone to a hub to get my car and bypass the final part of the current delivery process.
3. Buyers (like myself) are not used to dealing with shipping companies and their needs. Houston has told this company they are not allowed to make deliveries on the local streets as this can block traffic. Not sure how true that is but this is what the driver said. I also think that I could have taken delivery at one of the locations I had in mind near my office or home, but this was nixed by the driver. I think that this should have this scoped out a little better than making on-the-fly decisions.
4. Also, us working folks may find it difficult to cancel appointments / shut down offices (even for as little as 45 minutes as mine took) while we take care of accepting the car. Having a little flexibility in when we receive delivery would be helpful.
5. Also, I was expecting to take delivery near my home or office and instead I had to drive a few miles to pick it up. My wife was furious that I agreed to this insisting that I paid for personalized delivery and I should receive it. Not a huge deal to me but something to think about.
I still have only driven the car from pickup to my house. Will play a little more with it tomorrow. Overall great car. Purchase and delivery procedures have some work to go.