Tesla extended warranty: cost, coverage and plans
Short and expensive but still possibly worth it
Teslas carry a strong, well-earned reputation for many things. Speed, innovation and clever technology are among them, but cheap repairs aren’t.
According to RepairPal, Tesla maintenance and repairs cost owners 27% more per year than other vehicles, on average. When you consider that J.D. Power ranks Tesla’s reliability towards the bottom of the pack, anyone owning a Tesla past the 50,000-mile factory warranty period could be facing serious financial risk.
However, Tesla offers extended warranty plans for a select handful of Model S and Model X vehicles that can help owners avoid major repair bills. Tesla’s extended warranties aren’t cheap, but considering the potential cost of out-of-pocket repairs — and the apparent lack of third-party options — they may be worth it. We’ll cover what you need to know to decide for yourself.
- Tesla calls its extended warranty plans Extended Service Agreements.
- At the time of publishing, they’re only available for select 2019 to 2020 Model S and Model X vehicles with fewer than 51,000 miles on their odometers.
- Tesla Extended Service Agreements come with either two-year or four-year terms, with prices ranging from $2,500 to $6,350.
- Though significantly shorter and more expensive than the average extended auto warranty, a Tesla Extended Service Agreement could protect you from expensive repairs after your factory warranty expires.
Tesla extended warranty coverage
Like virtually all extended warranties, Tesla Extended Service Agreements only cover factory defects — not damage from accidents or misuse. For instance, a warranty would likely cover a power steering failure but not a crack in your windshield caused by road debris.
More specifically, Tesla Extended Service Agreements cover “any parts manufactured or supplied by Tesla,” with the following exceptions:
- Any repairs or damage resulting from repairs by a non-Tesla Authorized Service Center
- Any repairs or damage resulting from negligence, misuse or abuse
- Any repairs or damage resulting from accidents, collisions or other damage
- Any repairs or damage resulting from commercial use
- Any repairs or damage resulting from racing or off-road use
- Any repairs or damage resulting from improper towing
- The battery and drive unit, which have their own separate eight-year/100,000-mile warranty (or more, depending on your model)
- Tires and wheels
- Failures due to lack of regular maintenance
Even with these exclusions, the Tesla Extended Service Agreement is pretty comprehensive in terms of parts. (That may be in large part due to the fact that EVs have significantly fewer moving parts to begin with.)
Tesla’s website states that Extended Service Agreements are only available for Model S vehicles made from 2012 to 2020 and Model X vehicles made from 2016 to 2020. However, you also have to purchase your Extended Service Agreement no later than 30 days or 1,000 miles after your factory warranty expires.
For reference, Tesla’s New Vehicle Limited Warranty offers four years or 50,000 miles of Basic Vehicle (bumper-to-bumper) coverage and at least eight years or 100,000 miles of Battery and Drive Unit coverage (up to 150,000 miles on some models).
This means only select 2019 and 2020 Model S and X vehicles with fewer than 51,000 miles were eligible at the time this article was published, which we confirmed with Tesla.
If your Tesla makes the cut, you should know that the term options are also quite limited. You can either choose a two-year/25,000-mile plan or a four-year/50,000-mile plan.
Prices for these plans at the time of publishing range from $2,500 for a two-year agreement on a Model S to $6,350 for a four-year agreement on a Model X. At first glance, that may sound pretty steep, but it’s worth remembering that Teslas can have some pricey repair bills — even a $6,350 warranty might be worth it if it saves you from a $10,000-plus repair out of pocket.
So, let’s break down the benefits, plans and coverage to see if it’s worth it.
» LEARN: What does a car warranty cover?
Tesla extended warranty benefits
Tesla’s Extended Service Agreements don’t offer many other benefits besides repair coverage.
Many other automakers include at least partial reimbursement for rental cars, meals and/or lodging in their extended warranty agreements, but Tesla makes it clear in its terms and conditions that these are not included.
To Tesla’s credit, however, there are some additional benefits to an Extended Service Agreement. Telsa offers 24/7 roadside assistance that’s pretty generous. If your Tesla becomes undrivable due to a failure covered by your Extended Service Agreement, Tesla will tow you up to 500 miles to the nearest Tesla Service Center.
Tesla also won’t repair flat tires under warranty, but it will tow you up to 50 miles for free.
Tesla extended warranty plans and costs
Tesla follows a pretty simple pricing structure for its Extended Service Agreements, so you don’t have to get a quote to see how much your warranty will cost you.
However, the price of your Tesla warranty will differ depending on how soon you purchase it after your initial delivery date, with 180 days after delivery being the cutoff for lower prices.
According to a Tesla representative we spoke with, the “initial delivery date” is the date the vehicle was last purchased from Tesla directly, new or used.
So, if you purchase a pre-owned 2020 Model S from Tesla, you’ll be eligible for the lower rate for 180 days. But, if you purchase the same vehicle from a private party who bought it more than 180 days ago, you’ll be paying the higher rate.
Tesla Extended Service Agreement costs
|Vehicle||Term||Purchased within 180 days||Purchased after 180 days|
|Model S||2 years or 25,000 miles||$2,500||$3,100|
|Model S||4 years or 50,000 miles||$5,100||$5,700|
|Model X||2 years or 25,000 miles||$2,900||$3,500|
|Model X||4 years or 50,000 miles||$5,750||$6,350|
Note that all plans come with a $200 deductible.
These prices are higher than the average cost of an extended auto warranty, and the average extended auto warranty also lasts longer.
However, if you compare apples to apples, Tesla’s asking price for luxury electric vehicle coverage past 50,000 miles isn’t outrageous. In fact, compared to the competition, it could be considered a bargain.
For perspective, Mercedes-Benz charges $7,550 for a four-year warranty on its Model S rival, the EQS Sedan. Porsche doesn’t offer an extended warranty plan for the Taycan like it does for the 911, but it did point us to a third party who quoted us $8,112.
The moral of the story is that extended warranty coverage for luxury EVs doesn’t come cheap.
But is it worth it for your Tesla? Let’s check the terms and conditions before making the final call.
Tesla extended warranty terms and conditions
While we always recommend reading your vehicle service contract before signing, we broke down a few of the critical details in Tesla’s terms and conditions for you below.
- Maintenance: All maintenance must be completed within 1,000 miles or 30 days of Tesla’s recommended intervals as listed in your owner’s manual. Failure to do so — and to keep proper records — can result in denied claims.
- Preexisting conditions: Tesla doesn’t explicitly list “preexisting conditions” as an exclusion like most automakers do, but it does say that all “damage” occurring prior to the warranty period is not covered.
- Transferability: If you sell your Tesla, you can transfer your Tesla Extended Service Agreement to the new owner, provided you contact Tesla within 30 days of the sale. Tesla doesn’t say if there’s a fee involved (there usually is with other brands), so you might want to confirm — in writing — that there’s no fee if you intend to transfer your ESA.
- Exclusions: Typical exclusions for neglect, misuse and damage apply. See the section on Tesla extended warranty plans and costs above for details.
- Cancellation and refunds: You can cancel your Tesla Extended Service Agreement within 60 days of purchase for a full refund, provided you have not filed a claim. If you’ve filed a claim and/or 60 days have passed, you can get a prorated refund.
Is a Tesla extended warranty worth it?
Compared to the average extended auto warranty, Tesla’s Extended Service Agreements certainly aren’t cheap. But are they worth it? To find out, let’s look at some of the possible repairs you might be facing during the extended warranty period.
In its 2023 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study, J.D. Power ranked Tesla 29th out of 33 carmakers overall, with an average of 242 problems per 100 vehicles. It’s worth noting that these rankings were based on 2020 model-year vehicles, which are precisely the Model Ss and Model Xs still eligible for Tesla’s extended warranties.
Furthermore, when Teslas break, the repairs typically aren’t cheap. “As soon as I passed the 50,000-mile mark, the whole vehicle started failing,” said Model Y owner Alfonso, a ConsumerAffairs reviewer from New York. “The heating pump and multiple sensors failed including the auxiliary 24V battery. Be advised that each repair cost around $4800. Just diagnostics by itself are close to $1000.”
M., a ConsumerAffairs reviewer from Virginia, took their Model X in for multiple appointments to fix a “rattle” while it was still under warranty. “After six months, 3 tires, one rim, 2 alignments and a tire blowout … it was clear there is more to it,” they reported.
By the time Tesla finally identified the issue, M.’s Model X was out of warranty — so they were quoted $5,000 for the repair. “I intend to sell my Tesla and never deal with them again,” they wrote.
There’s a common theme among the reviews on our site of Tesla customers getting bills of $5,000 or more shortly after the factory Limited warranty expires. This could be a sign that a $2,500 to $6,350 Tesla Extended Service Agreement could actually be worth it, even with the $200 deductible.
However, it could also be a sign that owning a Tesla beyond the 50,000-mile factory warranty period might simply be a financial liability worth avoiding altogether.
Before you decide, let’s look at your other options.
Tesla extended warranty alternatives
To find out if a third-party warranty might be a better option for your Tesla, we tried getting quotes from three third-party extended warranty companies: Endurance, CarShield and olive.
Of those three, olive was the only one to offer coverage for a 2020 Tesla Model S with 49,000 miles, quoting us the following rates (tax not included).
|Deductible||olive Powertrain||olive Powertrain Plus||olive Complete Care|
|$100||$119.57 per month||$164.41 per month||Not offered|
|$250||$83.70 per month||$115.08 per month||$209.24 per month|
|$500||$47.83 per month||$65.76 per month||$119.57 per month|
While third-party warranties are often cheaper than the manufacturer’s option, that certainly isn’t the case here. For example, the closest equivalent to Tesla’s $5,100 four-year warranty is four years of Olive Complete Care, which costs $10,042.52 for the same length of coverage and has a $50 higher deductible.
Considering our other two companies couldn’t even provide quotes, third-party warranties might not be a viable option for Tesla owners. Considering that Tesla appears to be sunsetting its extended warranty program altogether — with no options for newer cars — the options for protecting your Tesla past 50,000 miles may be slim to none.
- Article sources
- ConsumerAffairs writers primarily rely on government data, industry experts and original research from other reputable publications to inform their work. To learn more about the content on our site, visit our FAQ page. Specific sources for this article include:
- J.D. Power, “Vehicle Dependability Improves Despite Continued Problems with Technology, J.D. Power Finds.” Accessed February 24, 2023.
- RepairPal, “Tesla Repair & Maintenance Costs.” Accessed April 16, 2023.
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