Can you really turn your $100,000+ electric sports car into an unusable brick? Yes… and no. The Truth About Cars did some digging into the recent story regarding a few unhappy Tesla owners that’ve turned their cars into lovely lawn ornaments. The story broke when it was found that Roadster owner Max Drucker found out he would have to shell out $40,000 to replace the “bricked” battery in his car.
It seems that leaving your electric vehicle unplugged is a major no-no, as a completely drained battery is not readily willing to spring back to life simply by being plugged back in. As a fail safe against completely drained batteries, a Tesla Roadster will alert the driver that the car has a range of zero miles remaining, when in fact there will likely be at least five percent battery life left. That’s not a lot, but it’s typically enough warning for a Tesla owner to get his or her car hooked back into the grid, and slurping down delicious electrons. By contrast, the battery readout in a Chevrolet Volt registers as having zero miles remaining when that system may in fact have one-half to one-third of its battery capacity waiting in the wings.
Still, don’t feel bad for Mr. Drucker just yet.
Tesla constantly works to inform its customers that leaving their electric vehicles unplugged is a very unwise practice. Sales and service staff go over this fact with the people who buy the cars, and it’s constantly brought up throughout the owner’s manual. Additionally, new owners are forced to sign an agreement that states they understand leaving their car unplugged for a long time can result in a battery with a zero state of charge.
I reached out to our own resident Tesla owner from AtomicToasters.com, Mr. David Wegmuller, to get some more insight on the issue of Roadster ownership as it relates to charge states. Per David, “In almost every interaction I’ve had with Tesla Motors, they’ve mentioned the need to keep the Roadster plugged when not in use. After one service they even left a flyer that read: A plugged Roadster is a happy Roadster.“
I also turned to the Tesla owners forum, which ran a poll of its readers to see how many know about the dangers of leaving the car unplugged for a long time. They know, all right.
[Source: The Truth About Cars.com]