Ask Anthony: Jacksonville woman says wheel fell off brand-new Tesla


On Aug. 13, Samantha Hanes’ husband picked up a new Tesla. The next day, Samantha drove it and noticed a strange noise.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Samantha Hanes and her husband were excited to lease a brand-new Tesla X. They’re familiar with the popular electric cars. 

“I currently have a Tesla and I like the current car that we have,” Hanes explained. 

On Aug.13, her husband picked up the new Tesla. The next day, Hane drove it and noticed a strange noise.

“We called Tesla right away and told them that we heard this noise,” she explained. “They said, starting in 2019, that the car would make a noise because if you’re driving less than 20 miles per hour. They wanted it to have a noise to avoid hitting other pedestrians or whatnot.”

She was concerned and stopped driving the car. But, her husband convinced her to try it out again since it was brand new.  

She says the noise continued. 

“It was making me nervous because it was getting louder and louder.”

So loud, that Hanes called Tesla while she was driving down J. Turner Butler Boulevard four days later.

“I’m on the phone with Tesla and the wheel comes off of the car while I’m on the freeway. I was terrified. Especially because my daughter was in the backseat, and she’s a toddler.”

Hanes says a manager with Tesla came and got the car and took it to a local service center.

“A nice pedestrian actually brought the wheel to me and told me that only one lug nut was screwed in.”

She says the car was in the shop for two months for repairs, and she doesn’t want it back. 

“If something could be missed as simple as a tire being screwed on, I didn’t know what else could be missed in the car.”

Samantha wants Tesla to end her lease and give her money back. But, she says they’re not listening to her. 

“I reached out to them multiple times telling them that I did not want this car. That I was fearful to drive the car. They basically ignored me multiple times.”

She reached out to First Coast News Anchor Anthony Austin for help. 

We called the Tesla dealership in Jacksonville. But, after waiting for more than ten minutes no one ever picked up. 

We also reached out to Tesla on social media and through email. No response. Anthony even tweeted Tesla CEO and co-founder, Elon Musk. 

We visited the Tesla center in Jacksonville and were told a manager would call us back. We have not received a call.  

We are still working to get answers for Hanes, who is still paying for a car she is no longer driving. 

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