9 Types of People Who Should Never Buy a Tesla

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A Tesla might seem like a great option for your next vehicle. But think twice before purchasing if you're this type of person.
Updated April 3, 2023
Fact checked
woman sitting in electric vehicle Tesla Model 3

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More drivers have been considering whether an electric vehicle might be a good fit for them. That is especially true of those looking for ways to cut the cost of gas and keep more cash in savings.

But an electric car like a Tesla is not for everyone. So, as you try to weigh the pros and cons of going electric, here are some types of drivers who should steer clear of a Tesla.

Don't like new technology

vadish/Adobe interior of a Tesla Model S car

One of the great things about Teslas is their cutting-edge technology. For example, these cars come with touch screens that help you control basic functions, and the vehicles offer great navigation features.

But a Tesla may not be for you if you’re someone who has had the same smartphone for years and generally doesn’t like upgrading to the latest gadgets.

Worried about recalls

ColleenMichaels/Adobe people shopping inside the Tesla store in the Bellevue Mall

Tesla has had a number of recalls, including seat belt and steering assist issues. There have also been some recent high-profile fires involving Teslas.

If you don’t want to worry about constant recalls, you may want to settle for a more reliable car. Check online for recalls as part of your car research to help you find the best make and model for you.

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Nervous without a spare tire

Andriy Medvediuk/Adobe wheel with tesla icon

Teslas do not come with a spare tire. The company skipped the spare to eliminate additional weight and create more storage space.

The prevalence of roadside assistance programs has made it easier to get help even if you don’t have a spare tire. Still, if not having a spare tire makes you uncomfortable, a Tesla might not be for you.

Worry about finding a charging station

sheilaf2002/Adobe cars charging at a Tesla Supercharger station

“Range anxiety” is a big issue for some drivers who are considering the switch to an electric vehicle. You may be concerned that you won’t get to a charging station in time and will get stuck somewhere on the open road.

More charging stations are popping up across the country, so it may be easier to find a station and charge up as needed. But the lack of infrastructure can still be an issue for some drivers.

High electric bills

Renata Hamuda/Adobe electricity bill with light bulb coins calculator and pen on the desk

Electricity rates vary from city to city. If rates are high where you live, buying a Tesla and charging it at home might be costly.

Or, perhaps you have a large home that requires more electricity to run it, or have high-energy appliances and systems. A Tesla will cause those already high electric bills to climb even higher.

These costs can add up, so take your electric bill into consideration when buying an electric car.

Don’t like complicated repairs

chartphoto/Adobe mechanic repairing a car

Teslas can be more complicated to repair than other vehicles.

In addition, getting parts can be difficult. Finally, not every garage has the know-how to fix a Tesla. So, if the car needs fixing, it might be a headache to get it serviced.

Live in cold climates

Taina Sohlman/Adobe White Tesla Model 3 electric car

Research has shown that a Tesla doesn’t always perform as well in extremely low temperatures.

As the air gets colder, your range may decrease, which is a big deal when driving a car like a Tesla.

If you’re in a place where the temperatures drop steeply during the winter months, a Tesla might not be the best option for you.

Budget-conscious

Kittiphan/Adobe woman checking bills, taxes, bank account balance and calculating expenses

A Tesla isn’t a great car to consider if you’re trying to buy a vehicle on a budget.

The base-model price of a Tesla can start at $40,390 for a Model 3 and go up from there. The Model X has the highest base price, at $112,590.

Pro tip: The cost of a Tesla can be high. One of the best ways to build wealth is to steer clear of building up debt. So, unless you have a lot of cash to burn, buying a Tesla with all the bells and whistles might not be the best choice.

Don’t believe the hype

Mike Mareen/Adobe Tesla roadster

Some drivers may appreciate the glamor of driving a Tesla or see it as a status symbol.

But there are many other drivers who just want a car that can get them to school or the office, and maybe help them run a few errands.

If you don’t buy the hype, there are still plenty of vehicle options for you in either gas or electric versions.

Bottom line

VadimGuzhva/Adobe man in a Tesla car

If you’re trying to save money on gas, an electric vehicle might be an option to consider. But it also needs to be a good fit for your everyday driving needs.

For example, if you are working hard to retire early, buying an expensive Tesla can set that effort back.

So, before you take the plunge, check with your local Tesla store to get more information and see if these vehicles are right for you.

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Author Details

Jenny Cohen Jenny Cohen is a freelance writer who has covered a bit of everything, from finance to sports to her favorite TV shows. Her work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and FoxSports.com.

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