Why Do Tesla Owners Have a Bad Reputation?
If you’re annoyed by people who own Teslas, you’re in good company. Unfavorable stereotypes abound about drivers of these wildly popular electric vehicles, but how accurate are they?
From its high-profile CEO, Elon Musk, to its cutting-edge, game-changing technology, this electric vehicle brand holds a massive place in the collective consciousness. However, many people think that those who own these sleek, high-tech cars are snobby, careless and entitled. As it turns out, some stereotypes regarding the EV brand are well-deserved while others aren’t. One thing’s for sure: These futuristic cars are here to stay.
The World’s Best-Selling Electric Vehicle Stirs Up Lots of Controversy
In 2019, the Tesla Model 3 became the best-selling electric vehicle in the world. As of the third quarter of 2021, more than 2 million of the brand’s vehicles had been sold, making it one of the most ubiquitous names in the EV world. In 2019, vehicles manufactured by this company accounted for nearly 80% of all EV sales. If it feels like you’ve been seeing more of them on the road lately, it’s not your imagination. As widespread as they are becoming, it’s easier than ever to become annoyed by the people who drive them.
Why Are Tesla Drivers So Annoying?
If you know a driver who has purchased one of these EVs, you’ve probably heard all about it. Across social media, owners of these vehicles pummel followers with posts about how amazing they are. It’s not unusual to see the same person post multiple photos of their Model 3 or another model in various locations or to make posts bragging about how nice it is not to have to buy gas all the time.
One thing that makes people who drive these cars so aggravating is that everyone knows how pricey they are. Therefore, if you can afford one, you probably have plenty of extra money. As a result, this type of electric vehicle is seen as a major status symbol. Even if a driver isn’t throwing it in others’ faces, the mere fact that they can afford to buy it is enough to make people roll their eyes.
Exclusivity is just one thing that makes people who own these vehicles annoying to others. All too often, people who own a Model S or another model make a big deal about how much they’re doing to save the environment. Because these vehicles have such high torque, drivers often like to gun their engines, burn their tires or otherwise make flashy, aggressive moves on the road. To top it all off, they may act holier-than-thou about distracted driving – all while keeping their eyes glued on the massive touchscreen instead of the road.
Are People Who Drive These Cars Reckless?
If you’ve seen someone driving a Model X or another car from this brand and been annoyed by what you’ve seen, you may question the overall safety of these vehicles. In fact, there have been a few instances in which people have died while misusing the car’s Autopilot feature. However, only three fatalities have been linked to using Autopilot in six years.
All Teslas come standard with the Autopilot feature, which includes two main components: traffic-aware cruise control, which automatically adjusts for surrounding traffic, and Autosteer, which uses lines on the road to keep the car on track. Many regular vehicles offer features like these, so it’s inaccurate to say that people who drive Teslas are more reckless than them.
Many people who buy cars from this brand opt for the Full Self-Driving, or FSD, feature, which adds a slew of other semi-autonomous features, including the following:
- Navigation on Autopilot, which automatically steers the car from on-ramp to off-ramp
- Auto Lane Change, which assists when moving the vehicle to an adjacent lane
- AutoPark, which automatically parks the car in two different ways
- Summon, which moves the car in and out of a tight spot with an app or car key
- Traffic and Stop Sign Control, which identifies traffic signals and stop signs, automatically slowing the car to a stop as it approaches them
Drivers can toggle all of these features on and off. FSD features only work when at least one hand is on the wheel. However, what’s to stop a driver from holding on from the passenger seat?
The bottom line here is that these EVs are remarkably safe – the people driving them are causing most of the trouble.
How Much Do These Cars Cost – and Is It Really Worth It?
Another annoying thing about people who drive Teslas is how they shrug off the high price tag, insisting they’re saving a bundle. Is that really true, though?
There’s no doubt that these cars are far pricier than average. In 2022, the base price of the cheapest model, the Model 3, stood at $48,200. The Model X, which boasts the “Falcon wing” doors, starts at $116,200 for the long-range model.
Do people save that much money by driving this type of vehicle? It is estimated that driving one 15,000 miles per year over five years would save you $7,000 in fuel costs, so you’re not exactly going to recoup the cost of the vehicle in the form of fuel savings. Still, not having to buy gas constantly is a nice perk – and it’s one thing that people who own these cars love gloating about.
Do These Drivers Cause Lots of Car Accidents?
It’s one thing to be annoyed by people who drive vehicles from this brand because of their snobby attitudes; it’s another to regard them as reckless drivers who cause lots of car accidents.
As aggravating as the attitude of some Tesla owners may be, the truth is that they are probably less likely to be involved in car accidents than other drivers. As cars become more autonomous, individual drivers may become less and less responsible for accidents, and the world will be a safer place. Until then, we’ll just have to put up with the annoying Instagram posts and other quirks of people who own Model 3s and the like.