A group of disgruntled Tesla owners have staged a hunger strike in a bid to have problems with their cars addressed.
The Norwegian group staged the 24-hour protest ahead of Tesla CEO Elon Musk arriving in the country for an energy conference on Monday.
They claimed they had been driven to the action by a series of faults with their electric cars ranging from faulty door locks and infotainment screens to rust problems and issues with cars failing to start in cold weather or failing to start in warm weather. They also expressed dissatisfaction with Telsa’s customer service in handling the problems.
In total, the group published a list of 29 issues with their cars and urged Mr Musk to pay attention to Telsa owners in Norway, where the EV brand was the biggest selling car maker in 2021.
The group’s spokesman Erlend Mørch, from Oslo, explained: "We are hoping to get Elon’s attention so he will start to pay attention to his Norwegian customers.
"Customers that love the car and many who want to continue being Tesla customers, but are plagued with endless repairs and in many cases unresponsive support centres."
In a speech at an event to mark the beginning of the protest, Mr Mørch said: "Dear Tesla owners, the day has come.
"It is now our voices will be heard. It is now we reach our hands to the skies, and hope that the one who looks down on us - with his satellites - will hear our prayers."
The owners also spelled out the word “help” with their cars in a bid to gain attention.
After news of the hunger strike began appearing on social media, Musk tweeted about fasting, writing: "On advice of a good friend, I’ve been fasting periodically & feel healthier."
Although seemingly coincidental, some involved in the protest saw it as a "cruel subtweet" in reference to their actions.
The Tesla Hunger Strike website lists 29 alleged problems owners have had with Tesla cars. It states: "Norway has the most Teslas per capita in the world. But a lot of customers are not happy.
"Norway is by far the number 1 Tesla country in the world. We are the canary in the coal mine.
"We are a group of dissatisfied Norwegian Tesla owners. We believe that if Elon Musk is made aware of our troubles, he will solve the situation."
Norway is among the global leaders in EV adoption and has the highest EV-per-capita rate in the world thanks to taxation policies which heavily favour battery-powered vehicles over petrol and diesel, and a robust charging infrastructure.
In 2021 two thirds of new car sales were battery electric vehicles and Tesla’s 11% market share made it the biggest selling brand in the country.
The full list of alleged faults issued by the Norwegian Tesla owners
- The car won’t start in cold weather
- Door handles won’t open in cold weather
- Intense squeaking noise
- Car won’t start in warm weather
- "Bubbles" in seats
- Loose front seat
- Trunk lid filled with rain water
- Autopilot does not work properly
- Internet is slow and does not work as it ought to
- The wipers do not work (well enough)
- The car creaks when you pass speed bumps and other bumps in the road
- Decorative moldings loosen
- The lights do not work properly
- The doors stop working properly
- Doors that open by themselves
- The computer does not work
- Yellow edges around the display screens
- Windows that do not close completely
- Systems reset on their own
- Problems charging
- Reduced power
- Rust problems on new cars (especially Model 3)
- Poor paint quality means that the car has to be repainted
- You were promised free charging throughout the car’s lifetime, but the new charging stations do not fit the car
- Lower battery life that Tesla claims
- Problems with the air conditioner
- Not all problems are solved when the car is serviced
- Tesla promise to contact you, but you do not hear from them
- You have to wait on the phone for a long time before Tesla answers