Car Culture

Tesla Model 3 stripped of Consumer Reports recommendations

The nonprofit consumer advocacy group removed its recommendation of a number of vehicles based on data from customer reliability surveys.

The Model 3 had no problem surviving Alaska, but it seems to be having a tougher time surviving daily life in the hands of average owners.

Nick Miotke/Roadshow

Tesla is a pretty new car company, and historically it has had some issues with the reliability of its high-tech, complex electric vehicles. These issues have managed to trickle down to the entry-level Model 3, and as such, Consumer Reports announced on Thursday that it was removing its recommendation to buy the Model 3.

The revocation of CR's endorsement comes after numerous owners reported problems with their vehicles' paint, trim and body hardware in Consumer Reports' annual vehicle reliability survey, which polls owners of around 470,000 cars.

"While Teslas perform well in Consumer Reports' road tests and have excellent owner satisfaction, their reliability has not been consistent, according to our members, which has resulted in changes to their recommended status," said Jake Fisher, senior director of auto testing at Consumer Reports, in a statement.

This wouldn't be the first time that Tesla has lost a CR recommendation either. Similar things happened with the Model S, which initially received an essentially perfect score from the publication, then had its recommendation rescinded over reliability concerns.

"This new data from Consumer Reports comes from their annual Owner Satisfaction survey, which runs from July through September, so the vast majority of these issues have already been corrected through design and manufacturing improvements, and we are already seeing a significant improvement in our field data," said a Tesla spokesperson, in a statement to Roadshow.

Consumer Reports survey data also spelled bad news for several other vehicles including the BMW 5-series, Dodge Charger, Acura RDX, Volkswagen Tiguan and Chrysler 300.

"We address all issues we see in our quality indicators, and the issues referenced by Consumer Reports have already been identified and resolved," said an FCA spokesperson, in a statement to Roadshow. "The 2019 Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger represent the best iterations of the vehicles ever."