In a surprising move, Tesla has begun delivering its new Model S and Model X vehicles in the UK equipped with a unique accessory: a grabbing stick, dubbed “The Reacher.” This development follows the company’s decision to cease production of right-hand-drive configurations for these models, a decision that has sparked controversy among Tesla enthusiasts and potential buyers.
#Tesla has started to deliver new Model S & X vehicles in the UK 🇬🇧 w/ a grabbing stick after they deliver only LHD configurations— Berlinergy (@Berlinergy) June 30, 2023
„The Reacher“ is a grabbing stick to grab things like parking receipts and drive-thru items ..https://t.co/QhPEqFFDFk https://t.co/uTKj16yGNL pic.twitter.com/AVkkr5hOzr
Last month, Tesla announced that it would no longer produce right-hand-drive versions of its Model S and Model X vehicles. They decided to stop selling the Model S and Model altogether in Australia, Singapore, and Thailand, and offer left-hand-drive vehicles in larger markets, including the UK.
This abrupt change in strategy led to the cancellation of many orders, causing customer frustration. Some of these customers had been waiting for years for the refreshed Model S and Model X vehicles, particularly the high-performance Plaid variants. Despite the disappointment, many UK buyers decided to proceed with their purchases, albeit with the left-hand-drive configuration.
To address the inconvenience caused by the left-hand-drive configuration in a right-hand-drive market, Tesla has included “The Reacher” with each new vehicle. This grabbing stick is designed to help drivers reach the passenger window, presumably to collect items such as parking receipts or drive-thru orders. This solution, while practical, has been met with a mix of amusement and bemusement by the Tesla community.
Some have seen the decision to force UK customers to accept left-hand-drive vehicles and the subsequent introduction of “The Reacher” as a somewhat comical solution to a self-inflicted problem. While the grabbing stick does provide a practical solution to a unique challenge, it also serves as a reminder of the unexpected consequences of Tesla’s decision to cease production of right-hand-drive vehicles.
In conclusion, Tesla’s decision to stop producing right-hand-drive configurations of the Model S and Model X has led to a unique situation in the UK market. Introducing “The Reacher” as a solution to the challenges posed by left-hand-drive vehicles in a right-hand-drive market is a testament to Tesla’s innovative approach, even if it is a solution to a problem of their own making. As the situation evolves, it will be interesting to see how Tesla customers in the UK adapt to this change and whether other solutions will emerge.