Tesla Retroactive Feature Deletion

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6,442
Location
New England
Apparently some Tesla options are all software based and according to this article(linklink) Tesla inadvertently enabled up to $8000 options that original owners never paid for. A used customer who now has vehicle ends up loses Auto pilot feature he had when purchasing used vehicle because Tesla instead of letting it go disabled it remotely by software. They offer it back for $8000. Based on this article I see a few things: 1) Tesla is sloppy on builds 2) Tesla is greedy and overreaching because they screwed up and now reverting the feature. Realize this is akin to GM selling you a new car with cruise control but not on options sticker and then on a dealer oil change modifiying the vehicle without your knowledge and disabling it. 3) MAybe people already know this but I see hacking coming down the line.
 
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36,128
Location
ME
Back in the 80s GM was having issues with the MAF sensors on 2.8 liter A-bodies. So, under warranty, they said forget it, and put a MAP sensor on and updated the computer to be speed-density. Word on the street was this made your car run worse. Couple years ago Enterprise was selling used Impalas without side curtain air bags. They were standard on all levels of consumer-available Impalas for that year, but Enterprise got a fleet-only special that skipped them. Someone bought Impala, got t-boned, died, estate sued ERAC. This to me is like "owning" a movie on I-Tunes. What if I like the "Hi-Jack" joke in "Airplane!" but they edit that out on the server because it's not politically correct?
 
Messages
9,958
Location
MA
Originally Posted by bulwnkl
I wish someone would bring suit against Tesla, if this is real.
What's the suit for? I would think you'd sue the owner that sold you a car that had a feature that he didn't pay for and Tesla eventually deactivated. Like if someone sold you stolen goods, your beef isn't with the maker of the goods, it's the person that sold you the goods. If the owner sold you the car and disclosed that they didn't pay for that feature but it's active, then there's probably no recourse.
 
Messages
150
Location
Texas
I remember the Enterprise Car Sales scandal. What got them in trouble was they were listing used rental cars as having side airbags but they had actually been factory deleted.
 
Messages
5,191
Location
Atlanta,GA
The smart people in this world will find a way to active these features. I don't see anything inherently wrong with what Tesla is doing. It may be an example of poor customer service but that's it.
 
Messages
295
Location
Houston, TX
Meh whatever. They got to use a feature that normally cost extra for a while for free and then the feature was taken away. I would consider it a trial period like XM radio and Onstar where GM gives it to you a for a year or whatever and then you have to pay for it after that.
 
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4,046
Location
Ca.
The original owner either paid for/ was entitled to the feature or he did/was not, and the paperwork on the matter will determine how this goes. Sounds like they enjoyed a freebie for a while but lied about paying for it to the next guy. We'll see what happens when the sides weigh-in, but how many times has this happened? Once so far? UD
 
Messages
1,456
Location
Perris, CA
I wonder how long it will be before someone hacks these features back in. In fact, I'd be very surprised if someone hasn't already done it.
 
Messages
828
Location
New Hampshire USA
Interesting, a few years ago if someone didn`t opt for tilt wheel they could just purchase and install an operating lever and viola. Don`t think anyone at the head shed noticed or cared. Imagine the disappointment in realizing how valueless we consumers are. Obviously physical components are already installed and only a software tweak is needed to activate certain options.
 
Messages
4,597
Location
Manchester, England
As mentioned above, all the hardware is already there - you only need to write a few lines of code for whatever feature you want. Tesla ‘remap' businesses coming soon?
 
Messages
509
Location
Minnesota
I have to imagine it will never be as easy as just "hacking the software". Tesla does over the air updates and can likely see the status of the software in the car. I wouldn't be surprised if they were able to shut down your car or make changes under the guise of "safety concerns". Especially relating to automated driving.
 
Messages
600
Location
Earth
Exactly, you would have to sever the vehicles ability to communicate with Tesla, which may mean creating custom ECU's and computer modules if you want to retain many functions. I wish whoever does it good luck in the R&D to come, they are gonna need it. That said it is still extra (redacted) of Tesla to do this if the article is accurate in the recounting of events.
 

Pew

Messages
1,171
Location
Illinois
This is going to be amusing. It's not Tesla's car anymore, they've relinquished ownership of it once it was sold. Not the consumer's fault that Tesla messed up.
 
Messages
4,422
Location
Guilford, CT
Originally Posted by Wolf359
Originally Posted by bulwnkl
I wish someone would bring suit against Tesla, if this is real.
What's the suit for? I would think you'd sue the owner that sold you a car that had a feature that he didn't pay for and Tesla eventually deactivated. Like if someone sold you stolen goods, your beef isn't with the maker of the goods, it's the person that sold you the goods. If the owner sold you the car and disclosed that they didn't pay for that feature but it's active, then there's probably no recourse.
Would you say the same thing if we were talking about a physical piece of equipment that the car came equipped with? Let's say someone buys a car with leather seats, but someone made a mistake on the window sticker and the customer only paid for the cheaper cloth seats. Or it included a towing package with a trailer hitch that someone forgot to include on the sticker. Once the deal is done and all of the papers are signed, it's too late for the dealer or the manufacturer to do anything about it. It was their screw-up, so they're the ones who should eat it. If the dealer called you up and said, "We accidentally didn't charge you enough money. Can you come back here and give us more money, or allow us to remove the trailer hitch from your car/swap out the seats/whatever, please?" Would you actually do it, or tell them to pound sand? And what if you told them to pound sand (as you should), and a year later, you bring the car to the dealer for a warranty repair, or for an oil change, and while it's there, the dealer removes that piece of equipment without your permission? You'd be cool with that? Or better yet, let's say you DON'T bring the car to the dealer. Instead, they send a tech to your house, and in the middle of the night, he removes the equipment while the car is parked in the driveway. You wake up in the morning and the options your car had the day before are gone. This is exactly what Tesla did, except they didn't have to physically send a tech to the owner's house. Instead the tech was in some office building, working on your car remotely.
 
Messages
17,301
Location
OH
IMHO, this is yet another example of Tesla's amateur hour execution in building their cars. Once the original owner takes delivery and money changes hands, the manufacturer has no right to change the build, even if some unintended features are software based and easily disabled. If Tesla had merely smiled and shrugged about some owners getting more than they paid for by Tesla's accounting, then oh well. For Tesla to reach back and disable functions that were available on delivery leaves a sour taste, or at least it would for me. It's not as though these were cheap cars at any given automation level.
 
Messages
9,958
Location
MA
Originally Posted by exranger06
Originally Posted by Wolf359
Originally Posted by bulwnkl
I wish someone would bring suit against Tesla, if this is real.
What's the suit for? I would think you'd sue the owner that sold you a car that had a feature that he didn't pay for and Tesla eventually deactivated. Like if someone sold you stolen goods, your beef isn't with the maker of the goods, it's the person that sold you the goods. If the owner sold you the car and disclosed that they didn't pay for that feature but it's active, then there's probably no recourse.
Would you say the same thing if we were talking about a physical piece of equipment that the car came equipped with? Let's say someone buys a car with leather seats, but someone made a mistake on the window sticker and the customer only paid for the cheaper cloth seats. Or it included a towing package with a trailer hitch that someone forgot to include on the sticker. Once the deal is done and all of the papers are signed, it's too late for the dealer or the manufacturer to do anything about it. It was their screw-up, so they're the ones who should eat it. If the dealer called you up and said, "We accidentally didn't charge you enough money. Can you come back here and give us more money, or allow us to remove the trailer hitch from your car/swap out the seats/whatever, please?" Would you actually do it, or tell them to pound sand? And what if you told them to pound sand (as you should), and a year later, you bring the car to the dealer for a warranty repair, or for an oil change, and while it's there, the dealer removes that piece of equipment without your permission? You'd be cool with that? Or better yet, let's say you DON'T bring the car to the dealer. Instead, they send a tech to your house, and in the middle of the night, he removes the equipment while the car is parked in the driveway. You wake up in the morning and the options your car had the day before are gone. This is exactly what Tesla did, except they didn't have to physically send a tech to the owner's house. Instead the tech was in some office building, working on your car remotely.
You are basically proposing a finder's keeper mentality. In your case of a tow hitch, if the owner didn't pay for it and it was a mistake, it's still possible for the owner to retrieve it. This has been litigated multiple times. You buy a house, there's some hidden treasure that belonged to the previous owner. You are the new owner so do you own it? Not if the owner didn't intend to include it. New owner loses in court all the time and they have to give it back.
 

wdn

Messages
1,454
Location
NH
You can hack a well known brand of digital oscilloscope in software and unlock features that were charged hundreds extra for. Even turn a 50 MHz scope into 100 MHz. Now imagine what's the incentive when it is a car and the unlockable options cost thousands of dollar.
 
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