Otago woman faces 360km drive to repair Tesla in Christchurch

Tesla Model X. Tesla

An Otago woman is shocked to find she’s facing a 360km drive each way to get her electric car serviced.

Jenny Kerr needed to get her Model 3 Tesla repaired after hearing a strange noise whenever she turned the steering wheel. After calling Tesla, she found out she’d have to drive from her home in Mosgiel up to Christchurch to get it fixed, but she wasn’t comfortable driving a faulty car that far.

“I don’t pay $98,000 for a car for you guys to tell me that I’ve got to take it to Christchurch,” Kerr told the Otago Daily Times.

She thought her car had been fixed after a Tesla technician flew to Dunedin to repair it. But when she picked up her car after the repairer had left for the airport, the issue was still there.

Kerr believes Tesla should arrange to transport her car to Christchurch for her and give her a rental while it is repaired, although the company didn’t agree to this.

Otago Polytechnic automotive senior lecturer Kevin O’Neill told the Otago Daily Times there have always been problems getting premium cars repaired locally. But there isn’t an issue with electric vehicles being serviced locally, especially since demand is growing in the polytechnic’s EV repair training.

Tesla has been contacted for comment.

In New Zealand this year, there have been 713 registrations for Teslas up to the end of June.

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