Some Common Motors sellers are repairing Tesla vehicles

A report falls beneath the class of “This can be massive information…or not”. Teslarati Relating to remarks made by Common Motors Chairman Mark Reuss on the firm’s Investor Day 2022 on November 17. He mentioned GM service departments have now repaired greater than 11,000 Teslas. “It is a rising enterprise for us. I’ve to say it is a new enterprise,” Reuss mentioned.

That is what occurred. That is the information. However what to do with it? That is the place issues get difficult. Reuss factors out that 90% of People stay inside 10 miles of a GM dealership. Lots of these retailers have technicians skilled to service the Chevy Volt PHEV and Chevy Bolt BEV, so it is not like they’ve by no means seen an electrical automobile earlier than.

After all, Tesla has its personal service facilities, however many are tons of of miles away, appointments are typically troublesome to get, and there are complaints about excessive costs for repairs. Tesla additionally has cellular restore technicians who will come to prospects to carry out minor repairs. Total, service would be the weak hyperlink in Tesla’s expertise, and whereas Elon Musk says he is personally spending time enhancing the service expertise, one has to surprise how a lot time he’ll be capable to dedicate to the difficulty when the Twitter debacle explodes. round him.

There may be additionally a pleasant irony right here. It’s well-known that service income is the life blood of many dealerships. They do not become profitable by promoting vehicles. They make their cash servicing vehicles, arranging financing, and promoting equipment like prolonged warranties, alarms, paint sealants, locking lug nuts, and ground mats. It is virtually the identical because the Kodak enterprise mannequin of gifting away cameras to allow them to develop all of the pictures folks take with them.

A part of the Tesla tradition is a deep-seated disdain for sellers. The sensation is mutual. Tesla continues to be banned from promoting its vehicles immediately on-line in lots of states, due to seller franchise legal guidelines. Common Motors has aggressively defended these legal guidelines in an effort to decelerate Tesla and its disruption of an vehicle enterprise mannequin that has been half and parcel of American tradition for generations.

There may be one other facet to it. Prospects get to tour the showroom and stroll the used automobile line. It isn’t uncommon for somebody to drive for service and drive into one other car. Among the most skilled (and profitable) gross sales folks cater to customer support. When somebody affords you the prospect to get out of your 3-year-old car and transfer right into a model new car for much less or more cash per 30 days, the attract of constructing a swap is robust.

Common Motors is stepping up its electrical automobile sport. A Tesla proprietor desirous about searching its EV choices whereas ready for his or her automobile to be serviced? Oh, you offered!


The subtext right here is that Tesla has been in Silicon Valley “run and break issues” mode since its inception. Many Tesla house owners discover satisfaction in realizing they’re sticking it to conventional sellers. Mark Reuss and his colleagues in Detroit would by no means admit it, however there may be a lot unhealthy feeling about automobile sellers that many derisively confer with them as “thiefships.”

With Elon Musk busy constructing new factories and ramping up manufacturing towards 10 million new vehicles a yr (or extra), is there an opportunity Tesla will push itself additional on the service entrance? In that case, Common Motors sellers — and others, too — might discover Tesla’s service enticing to individuals who favor to do enterprise regionally. Will that be everybody? No, after all not. However folks like selections and proper now, for those who personal a Tesla, you could have only a few of them if you want service.

It is a complete new alternative opening up for sellers all over the place. There may be additionally a big community of franchise auto restore corporations like Pep Boys and Midas that may push into this area. Statistics present that a lot of new automobile consumers select to do enterprise with a seller near the place they stay and work. One wonders if the good and mighty Musk absolutely appreciates that dynamic.

Jalopnik says, “It is a massive deal for GM and Tesla prospects. Not solely does it give GM an opportunity to see and study from rival automakers’ product gaps, it additionally provides Tesla prospects easy accessibility to service that’s typically onerous to search out.” Amen to that.




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