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Old 08-25-2022, 07:49 PM   #1
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Default Tesla Steering Yokes Are Disintegrating In Owners Hands

https://www.thedrive.com/news/tesla-...re-30000-miles


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The controversial steering yoke used in the Telsa Model S may be facing a new issue—material quality. Several owners have posted photos on Twitter showing the coating on the yoke disintegrating, leaving unsightly bald patches on the surface.

While steering wheel coatings do degrade over time, the key problem is the short timeline over which the Tesla yokes are falling apart. Twitter user The Kilowatts had a Model S Long Range fitted with the yoke which had three sizeable chunks missing after just 24,000 miles. Popular TikTok creator jf.okay posted photos of a rapidly degrading yoke on a Model S Plaid with only 12,000 miles on the clock. Twitter personality Meet Kevin also shared his experience, claiming he'd seen similar problems on his own Tesla after just 4,000 miles of driving.




Quote:

The controversial steering yoke used in the Telsa Model S may be facing a new issue—material quality. Several owners have posted photos on Twitter showing the coating on the yoke disintegrating, leaving unsightly bald patches on the surface.

While steering wheel coatings do degrade over time, the key problem is the short timeline over which the Tesla yokes are falling apart. Twitter user The Kilowatts had a Model S Long Range fitted with the yoke which had three sizeable chunks missing after just 24,000 miles. Popular TikTok creator jf.okay posted photos of a rapidly degrading yoke on a Model S Plaid with only 12,000 miles on the clock. Twitter personality Meet Kevin also shared his experience, claiming he'd seen similar problems on his own Tesla after just 4,000 miles of driving.

A variety of theories have been put forth by the Twitter community to explain the issue. Many posters quickly turned on the owners, accusing them of causing the problems through their personal vices.

Meet Kevin was facetiously accused of spilling beer in the interior, with a Twitter user hunting down a mugshot from his DUI arrest. Posters scrutinized images and criticized jf.okay in particular for excessive fingernail pressure on the yoke. Others spuriously asserted that excessive alcohol consumption could cause the problem via ethanol leaching out of the skin. Less cutting theories put the blame on hand sanitizers or lotions degrading the coating on the yoke.
Some of these theories are more ridiculous than others, but overall, many of the posts on Twitter seem designed to unfairly shift blame away from Tesla itself. Regardless, it seems unfair to expect drivers to treat their steering wheels—or yokes—with kid gloves.

Normally, The Drive would reach out to the automaker for comment on the issue. However, Tesla's famous lack of a PR department makes it impossible. If there's some kind of official comment on the matter online, this article will be updated accordingly.

The fundamental truth is that most automakers have found ways to create steering wheel finishes that last for 100,000 miles or more without excessive degradation. In the real world, people are going to use hand sanitizer and lotion. Some people even sweat excessively through their hands, and even drink alcohol! Most people expect to be able to live their lives normally without their cars suffering excessive wear from such basic activity. But as always, Tesla's quality issues are not exactly new.


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Old 08-25-2022, 08:05 PM   #2
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"Ethanol leaching out of the skin." okay.

Personally I don't find this a big deal. Contact Tesla and have the wheel replaced under warranty (if that's something they would cover"
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Old 08-25-2022, 08:40 PM   #3
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The "oh ****" deathgrip in plaid mode is no yoke
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Old 08-26-2022, 11:35 AM   #4
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I remember having this guy come in, his steering wheel on his 20 impreza had this edge on it that was bothering his hand, replaced under warranty, no biggie lmao
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Old 08-26-2022, 01:48 PM   #5
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what a stupid steering interface.
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Old 08-26-2022, 02:20 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Russ_G93 View Post
I remember having this guy come in, his steering wheel on his 20 impreza had this edge on it that was bothering his hand, replaced under warranty, no biggie lmao
yep, and the point that people fail to understand on The Drive (and apparently here too) is:

on a car that costs $20,000 this is ok (I'd argue that it's not ok in this situation either).
on a car that costs well over $100,000 this is not ok.

for that price they should find a material that will not melt because you touched it with palms that were too oily, or sweaty, and certainly not after less than 20,000 miles. when I worked as a trim/interior tech for Ford in the late 90s, I remember working on a number of high mileage Lincolns that had genuine leather wrapped steering wheels, no issues except for a patina. the technology is there, they just don't want to spend the money on genuine leather.

Last edited by samagon; 08-26-2022 at 02:31 PM.
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Old 08-26-2022, 05:59 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by samagon View Post
yep, and the point that people fail to understand on The Drive (and apparently here too) is:

on a car that costs $20,000 this is ok (I'd argue that it's not ok in this situation either).
on a car that costs well over $100,000 this is not ok.

for that price they should find a material that will not melt because you touched it with palms that were too oily, or sweaty, and certainly not after less than 20,000 miles. when I worked as a trim/interior tech for Ford in the late 90s, I remember working on a number of high mileage Lincolns that had genuine leather wrapped steering wheels, no issues except for a patina. the technology is there, they just don't want to spend the money on genuine leather.
Not sure how many have been sold, but if this only happens to a handful of people, I don’t see it worth mentioning. Replace under warranty and call it a day. If it stretches to be a significant problem, then it’s worth an article.

That said, we already know Tesla uses cheap materials. Quality has never been their thing and people seem to be okay with this because of motor / batteries and cult following. Do I think it’s acceptable? No. Is any of this quality issues surprising? Nope.
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Old 08-26-2022, 10:14 PM   #8
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what a stupid steering interface.
And on 600-1000hp vehicles, no less. They've actually managed to break stuff on this car that has worked fine on all other cars for nearly a century.

I tried the yoke for a while (a lot of people on the Tesla forums saying "you'll get used to it"), then laughed at it....then spent some time crying. Then a non-trivial amount of time cursing Elon and Franz on how horrible it was. Then I replaced it (and yes, this is the car asking me to drive into a brick wall):



Now I just need to fix the turn signal buttons, horn button, and shifting mechanism. Tesla really doesn't make driver-friendly driver-oriented, or driver-engaging cars.
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Old 08-27-2022, 12:11 PM   #9
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Last edited by juanmedina; 08-27-2022 at 12:17 PM.
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Old 08-27-2022, 01:17 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by godfather2112 View Post
"Ethanol leaching out of the skin." okay.

Personally I don't find this a big deal. Contact Tesla and have the wheel replaced under warranty (if that's something they would cover"
I think it's a bit of an issue because the leather is cleary incredibly cheap to fall apart so soon as the yoke has only been in the market for a year. Out of warranty there's going to be a lot of these cars with beat up steering wheels unless the owners want to replace on their own dime.
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Old 08-27-2022, 01:20 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Hiryu View Post
And on 600-1000hp vehicles, no less. They've actually managed to break stuff on this car that has worked fine on all other cars for nearly a century.

I tried the yoke for a while (a lot of people on the Tesla forums saying "you'll get used to it"), then laughed at it....then spent some time crying. Then a non-trivial amount of time cursing Elon and Franz on how horrible it was. Then I replaced it (and yes, this is the car asking me to drive into a brick wall):



Now I just need to fix the turn signal buttons, horn button, and shifting mechanism. Tesla really doesn't make driver-friendly driver-oriented, or driver-engaging cars.
I have found that owning a Tesla actually makes you hate Elon more than you did before. Some of the decisions they make with these cars are baffling. The obtuse music interface is a big middle finger to anyone that enjoys listening to music in their cars.
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Old 08-27-2022, 02:18 PM   #12
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Tesla is already on revision G for the yoke. The newest revision is supposed to have thicker vinyl. Mine still looks fine with 6k miles but preemptively I am going to request a new one.

On the yoke it seems that the material is over stretched. The other Tesla do not have this issue and the already build over 3M cars. First model issues.... Too bad they didn't do more validation.
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Old 08-27-2022, 07:07 PM   #13
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Wait a minute! They saved all that money on not having physical controls and just having it on the screen. How could this be?
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Old 08-27-2022, 07:47 PM   #14
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Ferrari price tag, Daewoo build quality...

I guess they are better than the short busses most Tesla apologists rode to school every morning.
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Old 08-27-2022, 09:47 PM   #15
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Barkley voice: Come on man. Daewoo? Mo' like Fisher Price Kenny.
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Old 08-27-2022, 09:47 PM   #16
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Barkley voice: Come on man. Daewoo? Mo’ like Fisher Price Kenny.
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Old 08-27-2022, 11:48 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by juanmedina View Post
Tesla is already on revision G for the yoke. The newest revision is supposed to have thicker vinyl. Mine still looks fine with 6k miles but preemptively I am going to request a new one.

On the yoke it seems that the material is over stretched. The other Tesla do not have this issue and the already build over 3M cars. First model issues.... Too bad they didn't do more validation.
This is pretty damn embarrassing. “We’re less than 2 years into the vehicle but look at the revisions we’ve done to the steering wheel!”

Yeah, sorry. This isn’t something to brag about. It’s releasing a product that’s crap and revising it for customers.
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Old 08-28-2022, 01:16 AM   #18
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I have found that owning a Tesla actually makes you hate Elon more than you did before. Some of the decisions they make with these cars are baffling. The obtuse music interface is a big middle finger to anyone that enjoys listening to music in their cars.
Right??

Before owning a Tesla, I disliked Musk because he was an annoying, childlike, petty con artist who called people "pedos".

After owning a Tesla, I dislike Musk because he was an annoying, childlike, petty con artist who called people "pedos", AND:
  1. Judging from what I've learned on the Tesla sites, lies even more than I imagined. For example, apparently he promised that owners of the refreshed Model S/X would be able to press on the center of the yokes to activate the horn after a future software update (rather than trying to find the current capacitance button). Not only has that update never materialized, nobody has ever seen any actual physical mechanism that would enable that. I know I didn't when I was replacing the yoke.
  2. Has suggested, required, and defended such incredibly stupid designs. Not forward thinking--just stupid. If he didn't dictate such stupid features, the cars would actually be a lot better. Some of his gold:
  • Automated door handles - Did we need these? Love waiting for them to pop out. Waiting for the day when one decides to stop working and continually sticks out. Or stuck inside. The also get frozen. But Elon wanted them.
  • Gull wing doors - Supposedly they were gonna work better in tight parking spaces. Turns out they work worse. But supposedly they look cool...so...now they've got basically a minivan with cool doors.
  • Capacitance button turn signals - You know what interface has never NOT worked on any car I've driven? The turn signal stalks. Sure, when I test drove the Murtaya and some other cars in the UK, it was a little weird having it on the opposite side of the stalk, but that's not a problem in the US. But "turn stalks are ugly" and don't align with self-driving cars that have been promised to be six months away every six months for the last half decade. So now I actually have to divert my attention to turn them on, make sure they're on, and make sure they turn off properly. Good luck to anybody trying to find them on roundabouts or parking lots, or trying to keep them on/off properly on multiple lane changes.
  • Offset, capacitance button horn - Still not sure why they went with this approach....maybe cheaper? Unfortunately, now if I need to let somebody know they're merging into me, I have to divert my attention from the all-important avoidance and not-getting-rear-ended actions just to find the horn. That's after first pressing on the useless center of the wheel and setting off the windshield wipers...which means I usually don't get a signal to the other driver until they've basically finished their lane change and I'm on the shoulder. But hey, at least now I know how to log a complaint to the NHTSA.
  • Touch screen shifting - I miss my shifter. I never needed to look down during three point turns before. Now, like mostly everything else I do in this car, it wants/needs me to pay attention to it and not the world around me.
  • The yoke - Don't need to argue with sane adults on this one--since they all agree it's a joke.
  • No driver display - My first tip-off that Teslas were not drivers cars.
    I could never own a 3/Y. I know, I know, "You get used to it". Right.
  • No hud - Elon no likely, so they don't put them in Teslas, even though all the competition seems to have them now.
Ugh...Thanks all for letting me vent. Naturally, I'm told that I can't criticize Elon because he's saving the world, has built a new car company from the ground up (*cough*), and designs and builds space rockets, and I've done none of that (the best I've done is partially designed two cars and shipped a video game I built myself)...but at least I've never called anybody a pedo?
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Old 08-28-2022, 09:34 AM   #19
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This is pretty damn embarrassing. "We're less than 2 years into the vehicle but look at the revisions we've done to the steering wheel!"

Yeah, sorry. This isn't something to brag about. It's releasing a product that's crap and revising it for customers.
**** happens and I think the problem is really minor. At least is not like Toyota BZ4X tires falling off or Chevy Bolt, KIA and Hyundai park outside or your house might burn out level of issue. As far as the revision they are probably not all related to the vinyl issue but a continuous manufacturing improvement and cost down. Still it doesn't look for good for Tesla and they need to do way more validation when they deploy such a radical change from the norm.
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Old 08-28-2022, 08:25 PM   #20
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Not sure how many have been sold, but if this only happens to a handful of people, I don’t see it worth mentioning. Replace under warranty and call it a day. If it stretches to be a significant problem, then it’s worth an article.

That said, we already know Tesla uses cheap materials. Quality has never been their thing and people seem to be okay with this because of motor / batteries and cult following. Do I think it’s acceptable? No. Is any of this quality issues surprising? Nope.
Agree with everything you just said. My dad's Model S is by far the most expensive car he's ever owned yet I'd argue that his E90 3-series and the 2015 Lexus ES350 that he owned prior to the Tesla both put the Model S to shame as far as the interior goes. Better material quality, better design, better fit and finish. He bought all 3 of those cars brand new at the time and the Lexus/BMW both cost just around half of what the Tesla did.

The batteries and the charging network are big enough advantages to make it worth the tradeoff IMO, at least for now. Other manufacturers are catching up as far as batteries/range goes but the charging infrastructure for any non-Tesla cars is still a mess. I can't wait for the day that they figure that **** out.
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Old 08-28-2022, 09:45 PM   #21
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**** happens and I think the problem is really minor. At least is not like Toyota BZ4X tires falling off or Chevy Bolt, KIA and Hyundai park outside or your house might burn out level of issue. As far as the revision they are probably not all related to the vinyl issue but a continuous manufacturing improvement and cost down. Still it doesn't look for good for Tesla and they need to do way more validation when they deploy such a radical change from the norm.
I can type in any vehicle with “catches fire while charging” and yield results, Tesla included.

My point is, something as basic as a steering wheel shouldn’t need numerous revisions and updates. I don’t care if it’s Tesla or another auto manufacturer.
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Old 08-28-2022, 10:30 PM   #22
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I can type in any vehicle with “catches fire while charging” and yield results, Tesla included.
the leaf is pretty much the only exclusion there... and the main reason I bought one. There have been some situations where chargers caught fire, but not the car.
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Old 08-29-2022, 11:36 AM   #23
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I can type in any vehicle with “catches fire while charging” and yield results, Tesla included.

My point is, something as basic as a steering wheel shouldn’t need numerous revisions and updates. I don’t care if it’s Tesla or another auto manufacturer.
I was referring to the companies issuing a buy back or recall. Yeah any car with "fire" will yield a result. No doubt Tesla screwed up with this Yoke material issue.
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Old 08-29-2022, 01:30 PM   #24
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Ferrari price tag, Daewoo build quality...

I guess they are better than the short busses most Tesla apologists rode to school every morning.
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Old 08-30-2022, 01:38 PM   #25
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I can't wait to see how the Elon Musk sycophants figure out a way to use real children to dangerously display why Tesla's steering wheels that fall apart are a lie.
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