06:16 GMT +327 March 2019
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    A man walks near a logo of Tesla outside its China headquarters at China Central Mall in Beijing, China July 11, 2018

    'I Hate the Way You're Treating Customers': Man Sues Tesla Over Lack of Support

    © REUTERS / Jason Lee
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    The electric car giant is being sued after it promised to give a New Zealand customer access to high-speed recharging but later allegedly broke its promise, instead offering much slower recharging services.

    Niall Darwin, an owner of an electric bike shop in the small seaside town of Raglan, picked up a damaged Tesla 90D as an insurance write-off at an auction in Australia a year ago for $40,000, a quarter of the new-car price, New Zealand media outlet Newshub reports.

    Before fixing the vehicle, the man got reassurance from Tesla Sydney that he was entitled to free access to Tesla's Supercharger network of high-speed refill stations for life. After that, Darwin had his new vehicle rebuilt for $60,000 and had it recertified and approved by Tesla.

    READ MORE: Tesla CEO Informs Staff of Attempted 'Sabotage,' Sensitive Data Leak by Employee

    However, when he brought it to New Zealand and tried to obtain power at a local supercharging station, it turned out that the function was not available.

    Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla Motors Inc., introduces the Model X car at the company's headquarters Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2015, in Fremont, California, US.
    © AP Photo / Marcio Jose Sanchez

    Tesla told Darwin that it would not provide supercharging or software support, without which the car would have virtually no value, because it was an insurance write-off in Australia. "Due to the extreme amount of damage that this vehicle had, we are not comfortable [knowing] if it is safe and do not want to do anything that could increase this risk even further," Tesla said in a statement to Newshub, citing customer safety concerns.

    After Darwin posted a video on YouTube, spotlighting his case, Tesla offered him fast charging — another way of recharging the car which is, nevertheless several times slower than supercharging.

    Although the man called the option "still wonderful", he's still dissatisfied with Tesla not giving him the promised supercharging. He has filed a claim in the New Zealand Disputes Tribunal to get $20,000 in compensation.

    "Hope the papers come and spoil one of your weekends cos' you've spoiled several months of my live. I love your car, but I hate the way you're treating customers like me," he said in a video posted after he had filed the papers in court.


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    supercharging, claim, court, Tesla Model S P90D, Tesla, Raglan, Australia, New Zealand
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