Nine current and former Tesla employees revealed that the vast majority of Tesla�s Model S and Model X vehicles require fixes after leaving the assembly line.
Citing Tesla�s internal tracking system, the same people said to Reuters that quality checks routinely revealed defects in more than 90 percent of Model S and Model X vehicles inspected following assembly.
Tesla responded to the report by saying that their �quality control process is unusually rigorous, designed to flag and correct the tiniest imperfections� but denied to provide any post-assembly defect rates.
Sorting the quality before initial assembly is crucial for automakers, because repairs don�t only cost money but time as well. In comparison, less than 10 percent of the cars Toyota makes have to undergo post-manufacturing fixes.
A former Tesla supervisor said that �so much goes into rework after the car is done ... that�s where their money is being spent�. Tesla claims that most of their post-manufacturing defects are minor and resolved in minutes.
These issues are normal with any new car but the persistent defects with the established Model S and Model X paint the picture of a company �still struggling to master basic manufacturing�, the workers said.
Cars requiring fixing are known as �kickbacks� within Tesla and their issue ranges from minor things like dents and scratches to more complicated like malfunctioning seats. Defects included �doors not closing, material trim, missing parts, all kinds of stuff. Loose objects, water leaks, you name it,� another former supervisor said. �We�ve been building a Model S since 2012. How do we still have water leaks?�
The most serious cases however are headed to one of Tesla�s outdoor parking lots to await repair. The workers said that the backlog on the lots, known internally as the �yard�, has exceeded 2,000 vehicles at times. When asked about it, Tesla denied that such �repair lots� exist.