I think on this on my sympathy is slightly on Tesla's side. There are multiple warnings about bricking the battery, and I'd have thunk RTFM was pretty much expected on a product like this.
Having said that they seem to have handled the PR side of things rather poorly.
This situation exemplifies the way to make or break customer' satisfaction, and consequently, the product's success or ultimate failure. It's a man-made gadget and therefore will invariably have some failings.
But it's how these problems are dealt with that is the measure of a quality up-market product.
I am a firm believer that no matter what consumer product you are selling - be it cars, cameras, TVs, fridges or whatever - you can make or break owner satisfaction, and ergo, the product's market reputation, simply with the way these problems are dealt with. Or not...
It isn't so much that the car has a problem - it is all about how the issue is handled, firstly on a dealer level, and then, by the manufacturer.
When you take the car in with an issue, and get the brush-off and "Oh - You should have read the Owner's Manual - Sorry - your fault".- it is very disappointing, and, at that point, even though the issue might eventually get fixed, irretrievable damage is already done
The manufacturers make sufficient profit that any issue should be dealt with immediately and comprehensively if they are to have a hope in hell of maintaining any customer loyalty. Maybe they need to have a 'slush-fund' funded by a levy on each car sold to accomodate this issue.
In a lifetime of retail experience I have seen over and over again that it is not the original fault that is the cause of the discontent - it is how the issue is handled.
It always works the same way - there is a fault in the product and the customer takes it back to the seller/dealer. If it is fixed quickly and without argument, the customer goes away happy as if the fault had never occurred.
But - if there is an initial argument or non-repair, it escalates, the service manager gets involved, then the dealer principal, then the manufacturer's rep, and, and, until usually finally the problem is attended to as it should have been from day one.
Result - the owner hates the car, the dealer, the manufacturer, and swears to never buy one again and tells all his friends the same.
Yet - if the issue was handled correctly initally, for far less cost and aggravation, the end result is so totally different and better.
For example - I have a Smeg cooker in my kitchen and after about 6 years the markings on the knobs have worn off. The original warranty was 12 months, so I rang the company in Sydney, explained the issue and asked for a price on replacement knobs for the 'function' and the 'temperature' controls. They said - oh they're $37 each, but that shouldn't happen, so at no cost we'll send you some new ones and a couple of spare ones for good measure.
Am I happy ? - Yes. Am I concerned that I had the problem in the first place ? - Not in the slightest, because it was dealt with appropriately by someone with some savvy marketing skills.
If Tesler is to ever become a genuine up-market brand, they need some serious lessons in this regard.