I made a list of helpful checkpoints to remember during the ordering, delivery or pickup, and paperwork process.
Tips when ordering a Tesla
- Use a referral code – you and the other person get free supercharger miles!
- Long-range/mid-speed – the smartest choice is the cheapest model with extended range. Paying for more speed doesn’t do much; the car is so fast you won’t notice or use it.
- Don’t get the wheel upgrades – you can buy better ones elsewhere
- Performance brakes aren’t necessary – they’re for looks more than anything. You won’t drive at fast enough speeds or turns to notice a difference. You can also buy high performance brake pads later for the stock brakes to get similar performance if you really insist.
- White interior upgrade (yes or no) – easy to clean, keeps car cooler, but makes interior more visible when tinted.
- Full Self-Driving upgrade (yes or no) – not worth the price IMO. FSD features aren’t out yet and that money is better spent investing in Tesla stock. They’ll be worth much more than the cost of FSD once it’s released.
- Consider buying existing inventory – getting one in stock is faster than waiting for an order. Orders sometimes delay by a couple weeks. Tesla has high inventory turnover so you can be assured that your car will be totally new (like born yesterday).
- Consider buying used inventory – might save a lot of money, only barely used, and returned by someone switching to a higher model or different colors.
- Apply for your EV rebate – you can do it even before you get the car. Do it ASAP to get it faster. It takes 2-3 months from the day you applied.
Tips during Tesla delivery or pickup
- Go early – take your time, it’ll be longer than you think!
- Check the car – ask to see the car before you sign any paperwork. Look for paint defects and anything you can find inside or around the car. If you find any, have them make a note and you can have it fixed later with less hassle.
- Don’t put on front license plate – unless your state law requires it. You can buy a kit like this one that lets you mount/remove without holes/adhesives.
Tips during paperwork process
- Put 2 owners if you need – for example, one person with low enough income to claim the EV rebate, and another with high enough income for the tax deduction. It’ll help both your credit anyway. 🙂
- Applying for a loan – keep in regular contact with your loan processor to speed up the process.
- Don’t trade in your vehicle – you’ll probably get more money selling it privately (try Facebook Marketplace).
- Refund if not happy – not happy with your order? Or didn’t get your referral credit? Just cancel and reorder. They refund deposits pretty quickly.