If you're on TikTok, there's a good chance you saw the Tesla Model Y that went viral for towing a semi-trailer around town. More than a million people have viewed the original video posted on Wednesday, and as the night went on, the story continued to develop. I talked to the folks who ultimately retrieved the EV, which was abandoned by its driver near a gas station, and the situation just keeps getting messier.
The Tesla was first spotted near a Bass Pro Shops in Harlingen, Texas with temp tags and the trailer in tow. Capital Towing later got a call from the Texas Department of Public Safety to remove the Tesla from a Valero near Palm Valley. They dispatched a light-duty unit to tow away the EV and a heavy-duty unit was sent out to recover the trailer. Both were impounded in the end.
"It was hitched up with what I believe was a UPS dolly," a Capital Towing employee told me over the phone. "He was driving around town like that, and the crazy part was there was no way to run lights to it."
Now, Tesla does offer the Model Y with a towing package, and it looks like this one was equipped with it. However, the trailer's connector apparently wasn't compatible with the car's seven-pin outlet. That's sketchy for obvious reasons, even during the day, but night time is when it really became a disaster. No Model Y is rated to tow more than 3,500 pounds, and although the trailer was empty according to Capital Towing, that's still 10,000 pounds or so behind the crossover that was dwarfed by the 53-footer.
No collisions were reported, from what I can find, and the driver "was no longer with the unit" when Capital Towing arrived. In short, they ditched it. Several videos of the car and trailer were uploaded to TikTok after it was abandoned, but there's nothing capturing the driver up-close, at least so far.
Until the driver is identified and located, the Tesla and trailer will sit in the impound lot. It's my guess they'll both be auctioned as there's almost no way someone's going to pay to set them free. You'll probably be able to score one or the other for cheap, but just know the Model Y is probably screwed up after all that. The back hatch looks to be crumpled already, and there's no telling what's wrong underneath.
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