There’s a story going around for the past few weeks about Tesla CEO Elon Musk implementing a solution to the problem of Tesla owners leaving their cars at Superchargers after charging is completed within 6 days of receiving a complaint about it on Twitter.
That’s accurate. Musk did respond to a complaint from a customer about the issue and 6 days later Tesla introduced a new idle fee to incentivize owners to move their cars after charging is completed. The problem is that some people are now asserting that Tesla and Musk went from “idea to execution” within 6 days, which is simply false.
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While Tesla does have a quick feedback loop, whether it’d be through its service centers, or engineers looking through the forums for possible improvements, or even directly to Musk on Twitter like in this case, Tesla does take feedbacks seriously as demonstrated before, but the idle fee wasn’t prompt by the recent complaint on Twitter or Musk’s response.
A French entrepreneur and Tesla owner named Loic Le Meur made the complaint to Musk on Twitter last month:
After Tesla introduced the idle fee, Le Meur shared the story on Medium claiming that “Elon Musk turns a tweet into reality in 6 days” and now several other media took his story – inc.com even published it today and created a video for it.
The problem is that it’s just not true.
Tesla has been working on the idle fee programs for months before the tweet from Le Meur as evidenced by the mention of the fee in the source code of Tesla’s website for the backend of the new ‘Supercharger Credit’ program back in August and as confirmed by a source to Electrek.
In the tweet before the implementation of the program, Musk simply acknowledged the problem and confirmed that a solution is coming, but Tesla owners have been complaining about this for a while and the solution was already in the work – literally for months.
Therefore, while it’s accurate to say that Tesla has a quick feedback loop and that the CEO’s interactions on Twitter are always appreciated by Tesla fans and owners, there’s a limit on how quickly the company can implement a new feature or program and this is a good example of that.