Tesla Model 3 Owners Expected To Be Less Accepting Of Reliability Issues

Tesla might be the new kid on the block, but the electric vehicle manufacturer’s fans are so unrelentingly loyal, many automakers only could dream of having such a following. That might not be the case for much longer, however.

While conducting its new study “Tesla: Beyond the Hype,” J.D. Power determined people who purchase a Model 3 likely will be less tolerant of quality issues than owners of either the Model S or the Model X, two vehicles that have had a variety of problems. The Model 3 will be Tesla’s first high-volume car, is expected to have an estimated range of 215 miles and will start at $35,000 before government incentives.

“When consumers buy a mass-market car priced around $35,000 that will be their primary mode of transportation, the degree of expectation will increase immensely,” Kathleen Rizk, director of global automotive consulting at J.D. Power, said in a statement. “We’ve seen that with other well-liked brands, whether or not it involves an electric vehicle.”

In 2015, Tesla shocked the industry when its Model S P85D performed so well, it broke Consumer Reports’ rating scale. But later that year Consumer Reports was forced to revoke its recommendation of the luxury sedan, citing consumer complaints of dependability problems. Model X owners also have complained that its falcon-wing doors weren’t functioning properly.

These niggles haven’t decreased owners’ brand loyalty, though, as many Tesla fans pride themselves on being early adopters of alternative powertrains. While reliability issues might not sway some of Tesla’s existing following, it could well be enough to deter new customers, especially since it’s no longer the only player in the EV game.

Thumbnail photo via Tesla

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