In the second quarter of 2018 Tesla’s goal was to produce and produce between 50,000 and 55,000 Model 3 sedans, and deliver even more. There have been parking lots all over the US filling up with Model 3s that have not yet been delivered. In light of that, Elon Musk recently tweeted that the company has moved from Production Hell to Delivery Hell.
Sorry, we’ve gone from production hell to delivery logistics hell, but this problem is far more tractable. We’re making rapid progress. Should be solved shortly.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 17, 2018
Tesla is a company that went from selling 2,000 cars per year to 200,000 in just 6 years. Growing the size of a multinational conglomerate takes time. Perhaps what Tesla is discovering here is that building something big in one place like the Gigafactory is in some ways easier than building many delivery centers worldwide.
Currently, Tesla’s process for handing over the car includes a big contract that requires lots of signatures, a process that reportedly could take over an hour. In addition to that, the delivery center employees also have to explain to their customers how the car works. Some customers are not very high-tech. Thus, delivering a car could take anywhere between 1 to 2 hours per customer. That is obviously not very quick.
Elon Musk has stated that Tesla is trying to streamline the delivery experience by switching to a digital contract that takes only minutes to complete.
We’re trying to get rid of contracts completely. Should just be “tap here & you get your car”. Then, if you don’t like it for any reason, just return it like any other product.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 23, 2018
Tesla always has a big increase in deliveries at the end of the quarter. Since this new system isn’t ready yet, Tesla was on schedule to have a very busy weekend this past weekend. Then, existing Tesla owners decided to show some initiative.
It was an idea originally suggested by IGN journalist Ryan McCaffrey on Twitter. Ryan is known to often get responses from Elon Musk, and he has a new Tesla Model 3 Performance. On September 21, Ryan suggested that he and other Tesla owners would be willing to help with the delivery issue by helping acquaint the new customers with their cars.
Wow, thanks for offering to help! The coming week is incredibly intense. If any current Tesla owners who’d like to help educate new owners could head to Tesla delivery centers during midday on Sat/Sun & morning/evening on weekdays, that would be super appreciated!
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 22, 2018
According to people detailing their volunteering experience on the Tesla Motors subreddit, there were 3 big issues Tesla staff were running into with the deliveries. The first issue had something to do with getting contract papers confirmed at Tesla headquarters. While they waited on papers, the second issue was finding the correct car on an overcrowded parking lot. The third issue was when a car was in the middle of the lot and other cars first had to be moved in order to take out the correct one.
Critics were claiming that there would be legal issues in using volunteers without a contract of some sort. That turned out not to be an issue since the volunteers didn’t do the official orientation, only talked to people before and after the staff were interacting with the customers. This included helping people install the Tesla app while they were waiting and filling in the gaps by answering questions after the orientation.
In any case, the volunteering effort was a huge success even if they didn’t involve doing orientations but only helped keep the people in line happy and informed. There are even unconfirmed reports of volunteers getting a die-cast Model 3 meant for day 1 reservation holders as a thank you for all of their help. Elon Musk recently stated on the Joe Rogan show that “it wouldn’t hurt to have more love in the world.” Its seem that in the case of Tesla owners, that message did not fall on deaf ears.
— Vincent 🚀🟠 (@vincent13031925) September 23, 2018
— TeslaBull (@TeslaBull) September 22, 2018
This was the third truck in four hours…
See the shiny new Jag sign on the building in the background? The trucks were dropping off right in front of them!
— 🐍🎷 Tesla Guy 🎷🐍 (@GuyTesla) September 23, 2018
Congratulations to Dave and Margie on your new car! Welcome to the family!!! pic.twitter.com/UXrSbuku7j
— 🐍🎷 Tesla Guy 🎷🐍 (@GuyTesla) September 23, 2018
— TeslaOptimist (@TeslaOptimist) September 23, 2018
— myname (@cbotnyse) September 23, 2018
— TeslaBull (@TeslaBull) September 23, 2018
— Disco_Pete (@Harbles) September 23, 2018
— John W Babiak 🇨🇦 (@jwbabiak) September 23, 2018
— Avron (@Avron_p) September 23, 2018
Remarkable world that a $50 billion corporation is fully experiencing the loves and support from users/owners, and also show the spirit of unity of Tesla’s communities, noble personality $TSLA #Tesla https://t.co/am64CfK4ab
— Vincent 🚀🟠 (@vincent13031925) September 25, 2018
Hat tip to Vincent for all of the tweets at the end of the article.