When faced with a repair bill that costs half of what you paid for your car, do you go through with the expensive repair, take it to the junkyard, or sell it for parts? Finnish Tesla owner Tuomas Katainen decided to do something more extreme – but probably much more satisfying – when faced with such a situation: He saw his car go up in flames, as noted in a report from Gizmodo.
Katainen handed over his 2013 Tesla Model S to Pommijätkät, a group of explosion experts on YouTube who like to let things go “boom”, after being paid $22,600 for a battery replacement. “Well, when I bought that Tesla, the first 1,500km [932 miles] were nice,” Katainen said. “Then came the error codes.” After taking his Tesla to a mechanic, Katainen discovered that the only way to fix the car would be to replace the entire battery pack, which would cost him at least $20,000, or about $22,600.
I think everyone would be pretty frustrated at the time, as the base price for a new 2013 Tesla Model S started at $57,400, later went up to $59,900 when the car first came out. Even a standard used model currently costs about $30,000 at the lowest. That’s probably why Katainen pulled the Tesla off the store and told the mechanic he’s going to “explode the whole car.”
For context, these cars come with an eight-year battery and drive unit warranty (or up to 150,000 miles), but the warranties on older models are starting to expire, revealing the potential costs behind a full battery replacement. Sept., Electrek reported on a Tesla owner having to replace a battery on a Model S that was no longer under warranty. As noted in the report, he was paid $22,500 from Tesla, but ended up getting a $5,000 repair from an outside store. Katainen’s quote was also from Tesla, and it’s unclear if he had access to an alternative repair service.
Anyway, the group behind Pommijätkät tied 30 kg of dynamite to the car and parked it in an old quarry in Jaala, Finland. Even Elon Musk was there—well, at least in spirit. A crash test dummy, outfitted with a helmet, thick winter coat and a photo of Musk’s face, was brought in by helicopter and then stopped in the driver’s seat.
Katainen triggers the explosion from a nearby bunker, and Tesla erupts into a fireball, with what appears to be thousands of pieces scattering across the snowy landscape. The group picks up what was left of the car, which amounts to just a pile of scraps. When asked if he’s ever had so much fun behind the wheel of a Tesla, Katainen replies, “No, never enjoyed Tesla so much!”