Flat tires and Tesla cars

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Tesla cars do not have spare tires.  So it is important to plan ahead about where to get a flat tire if you are driving a Tesla vehicle. 

The reason you are supposed to be comfortable purchasing a Tesla car (which has no spare tire) is that if you get a flat, the Tesla Roadside Assistance center will send out somebody to jack up your car and put a loaner tire onto your car.  Then you can drive to your destination, and later you can deal with repairing or replacing the flat tire.

Or, in the (supposedly) unlikely event that the Tesla Roadside Assistance center is unable to provide a loaner tire, the Roadside Assistance center will put your car onto a flatbed tow truck and tow the car to a Tesla Service Center where you can deal with the flat tire.

I have had four truly miserable experiences with Tesla Roadside Assistance in the six-state area shown on the map above.  The first thing that you learn when you get a flat and it is outside one of the green circles on the map is that the roadside assistance for flat tires is limited to locations that are within 75 miles of a Tesla Service Center.  As you can see, there are enormous portions of the United States that happen to be further than 75 miles from a Tesla Service Center.  There are no Tesla Service Centers in Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota, or Wyoming.  Most of Colorado, Idaho, and Utah, as you can see, are more than 75 miles from a Service Center.  So if you failed to plan ahead properly and somehow got your flat tire outside of one of the green cicles, you are out of luck.

I have marked with a red circle the area that will eventually be served by a Service Center that is under construction in Gypsum, Colorado.

Three of the flats that I got were within the green circles.  So you might think that all would be well.  But in each of those three calls to Roadside Assistance, I was told that no loaner tire was available.  The only choice was to get the car towed to a Service Center.  One of the tows would have required waiting six hours for the tow truck to arrive.  Another of the tows would have taken two hours for the truck to arrive, and the tow would have been to a Service Center that was closed for the day.  I guess they had in mind I would sleep in the car until the next morning to get the tire attended to.

Think about this absence of a spare tire, if you depart on a drive in the area shown on the map.

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