- First Name
- Dec 1, 2019
- Reaction score
- San Francisco Bay area
- Tesla Model Y LR, Tesla Model 3 LR
- Retired AI researcher
By your reckoning only people that live in a specific climate or environment are qualified to design vehicles (or anything else) for that climate/environment. I would agree that people raised in such environments, if they really interact with them, have a good perspective on how to address them. I can assure you that the *vast* majority of people I encountered in Michigan had no idea (or interest) in learning how to drive in the snow, ice, blizzards. They screwed up constantly and were more of a problem than anything else. So there are a few exceptionally observant people in these areas that could provide *any* value to the design process and chances are very good that they are in different lines of work than vehicle design and engineering. Those that are very likely aren't living in Finland (as an example). All of the Finnish people I know are living in California providing their expertise and experience in whatever field they are in. You do not have to design and build a vehicle *in* Finland to know how to design and build a vehicle that will excel in Finland. You are just prejudiced in a weird way that doesn't make sense to me.While I didn't come up with the phrase, and it was made in jest, there is some truth to it. From wipers that don't work in pitch dark & rain (ie. when you need them the most), to handles that break due to being iced up, to frameless windows, to heat pumps that break, Tesla hasn't often had the best reputation as a 'non Californian weather' car around here. While there is snow up in the Californian mountains, that's not what the majority of people there face every day, and often it feels like something becomes a priority at Tesla only when Elon sees a reason to do it. Another different type of example, unrelated to winter, is dropping indicator stalks. It's hard to see anyone designing a mass market car that way if they regularly had to drive through roundabouts (which are much rarer in the US).
Now to Tesla's credit they have, over time, fixed some things (like at least some improvement on the charge port lid that would get stuck). Also, it's fair to say they're not the only manufacturer who have faced issues.