Tesla Vehicles Can Now Diagnose Problems and Order Replacement Parts Autonomously
Tesla’s electric vehicles are now using over-the-air communication to order parts that, in theory, will repair the self-diagnosed issue.
Tesla vehicles not only have the ability to drive themselves in select situations, but they can also apparently order replacement parts for problems you may not even know exist. Much like a T-1000 Terminator can fix problems on the fly, Tesla's EV lineup may now be able to self-identify maintenance needs and order parts to fix them.
Reddit user houston_wehaveaprblm posted a photo, apparently taken from the infotainment screen of a Model 3, that shows a notification of a problem with the car's power conversion system. The car has not only self-diagnosed this problem but has also ordered replacement parts for installation at a Tesla service center. Other users in the thread chimed in to confirm that their vehicles have recently notified them of service issues as well.
Owners could already schedule service and view vehicle information through the Tesla app, and the company could even remotely access maintenance information to diagnose problems and make software changes if needed. To those of us not drinking the Kool-Aid, this latest development might feel like an invasion of privacy, but Tesla already has multiple ways to keep an eye on its cars and individuals' driving habits. The company collects information on vehicle performance and will use owners' driving data to price its own insurance products this year.
Tesla has had well-publicized challenges with wait times and service availability for its cars and has taken steps to improve the problems, but the vehicles’ ability to self-identify issues and order replacement parts without intervention is a new and noteworthy step to further address this issue. Owners report turnaround times as long as six weeks to have simple body repairs done to cars such as the Model 3, especially in areas like New York City, where there is but one Tesla authorized body shop. As CleanTechnica reported earlier this year, other Tesla owners have it even worse, waiting up to two months for Model X replacement parts.
Self-ordered parts won’t solve the company’s service center supply and demand problem, but it will help owners get a head start on potentially hard-to-get parts before they roll into the shop. Unlike our frantic browsing of WebMD every time we get a headache, it appears that Tesla’s approach to internet diagnoses may be a step in the right direction.