31 Mar 2021: Tesla customers double charged; Forced to seek help from banks
In a strange development, multiple Tesla customers have reported being charged twice for their new electric cars. Christopher Lee is one such customer who documented his ordeal in a YouTube video, where he was billed $56,579 twice for the Tesla Model Y.
His story was covered by CNBC and highlights how such customers are finding it hard to get their money back from Tesla.
Five-figure surprise: Customers had as much as $71,000 withdrawn from their accounts
The double charges are egregious because the massive sums of money are debited from the victims' bank accounts without their knowledge or authorization. The CNBC report cites two additional customers who faced the same issue.
The illegal withdrawals from customer accounts range from $37,000 (for the base Tesla Model 3) to $71,000 for the Model Y Crossover SUV with optional extras.
Weird: Tesla advised multiple users to seek help from their banks
Lee's video elaborates the difficulty in getting the grave error rectified by Tesla, which has been confirmed by others on forum posts, they also claim to face similar double charges.
Such duplicate charges, although not uncommon, are usually rectified by merchants. However, multiple user accounts cite Tesla shrugging responsibility and asking customers to get the problem rectified by their banks.
Not isolated: Customer claims to witness hundreds of victims at Tesla's dealerships
Banks require up to 45 days to issue refunds because they must coordinate with merchants and conduct investigations. Tesla, on the other hand, is already aware of the duplicate debits and can offer quick refunds.
Tesla directing the victims to their banks is strange since one of them claims that he witnessed hundreds of Tesla customers facing the same issue at the service center.
Fact: "At least 400 hundred other buyers" affected by double charges
Laissez-faire: Tesla reportedly shows no urgency to solve the grave error
Further, multiple user accounts cite difficulty in getting a hold of a Tesla representative. Even when they do, there seems to be no sense of urgency to solve the problem.
Some even had to go to their local Tesla service centers before they were provided an email address to lodge a complaint.
Meanwhile, Tesla's coffers could potentially hold millions of dollars in duplicate charges.
Recidivist tendencies: Tesla's 2019 Cybertruck pre-orders were also plagued with double charges
Worryingly, this isn't the first time Tesla has been caught double charging its customers. In 2019, several Tesla customers were charged for multiple duplicate pre-orders of the controversial Cybertruck.
However, those pre-orders were worth only $100, unlike the tens of thousands of dollars in overdraft fees and crippling finance charges on credit card bills Tesla customers face on account of its latest double-dipping incident.