Picture this: you don’t own a Tesla but the idea of driving an electric car is appealing. One day, you’re staying at a hotel that has a Tesla Destination Charger installed, and you see a bunch of Tesla EVs lined up, ready for test drives. After driving one, you’re considering buying one.
But this isn’t a store, it’s a hotel, so what’s the deal?
Get Fully Charged
You’ll soon be able to test drive a Tesla at a hotel
Tesla has invited property owners that have Destination Chargers installed at their locations to sign up for the Self-Serve Demo Drive program. Hotels, lodges, and other locations that sign up for the program will get up to four Tesla EVs that will be ready for test drives.
In short, it’s the American automaker’s latest idea of bringing in more sales. According to an email that was sent by Tesla to property owners who have a Destination Charger installed at their location, they can apply to host self-serve demo drives directly at their property. Tesla Destination Chargers are Level 2 EV charging stalls that are usually located at hotel parking lots.
Tesla will provide up to four demo drive vehicles and will schedule and manage the appointments, as well as maintain the demo drive vehicles at no extra cost to the property owners. The company says that current sites that offer self-serve test drives host more than 35 demo drives per week.
Here’s how Tesla describes the whole program, according to the email that was seen by Sawyer Merritt on X:
“Get more out of your investment in Tesla Destination Charging; Attract new visitors, increase awareness about EV charging at your properties & create future customers out of new EV owners.”
Self-serve demo drives mean that wannabe customers can schedule an appointment and hop into a Tesla Model S, Model 3, Model X, or Model Y without a sales rep present. The company creates a virtual key that’s stored on the test driver’s smartphone and everything is kept under control remotely.
For instance, the Hyatt House Hotel in Emeryville already shows up on Tesla’s website as having self-serve driving demos enabled, as spotted by Teslarati. We don’t know how many non-Tesla locations are currently offering this type of service, but we’d argue they’re few and far between, seeing how Tesla sent its email to property owners just last week.
We think it’s a pretty clever idea, but–as always–we want to know what’s your take on it. So head over to the comments section below to give us your thoughts.