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Tesla’s owner’s referral program is making a comeback

Tesla is coming out with a new owner’s referral program after completely revamping the program, which was initially costly.

It’s a rare demand trigger that the automaker is pulling.

The automaker doesn’t like to spend on marketing or advertising, and instead, relies on its user base to promote its vehicles and reward them in the process.

At the core of the referral program, new buyers can use referral links from current owners when buying a new Tesla, and each party gets prizes.

The prizes have changed a lot over the years.

At the peak of the program, Tesla was giving away free new Roadsters to owners who accumulated enough referrals.

An impressive number of people ended up reaching that level, and we estimated that Tesla would be giving away about 80 new Roadsters on top of giving out significant discounts to many more.

CEO Elon Musk later announced that Tesla is killing its referral program due to cost concerns associated with all those Roadsters, which the automaker has yet to deliver.

Tesla didn’t end up killing the program, but it did reduce the prizes to 1,000 free Supercharging miles on both sides of the transaction, though that went away, too. Over the last two years, the only referral incentives left were for solar products.

However, we reported last year that Tesla was starting to work on a new version of its referral program for vehicles.

According to a source familiar with the matter, Tesla planned to eliminate or reduce the use of referral links, which owners often spam on social media, and instead turned to an app-based referral program promoting in-person referrals.

The plans were not entirely clear at the time, but Tesla planned to update its mobile app to have more features for non-Tesla owners as it moves to allow non-Tesla EV owners to use the Supercharger network and integrate referral features through the app.

Now a year later, Teslascope, which can dig into Tesla’s mobile app software update, found that there was some code in the background of Tesla’s latest app update that shows a new referral program:

It appears that Tesla is working on bringing back free Supercharging miles and adding new prizes for vehicle referrals.

This is a rare demand trigger that Tesla would be pulling amid some rumors that the automaker is having demand issues, despite achieving record deliveries.

We might hear more about the new referral program during the conference call following the release of Telsa’s earnings today.

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