Skip to main content

As one of the most popular automakers globally, Tesla’s crossover offering is sure to be a popular choice. Especially as we continue to transition into the electric era, the Model Y will be on every shopper’s list. There are plenty of reasons to buy one, but what are some reasons not to buy the 2021 Tesla Model Y? Although Tesla has a mostly good reputation, there are a few reasons the 2021 Model Y isn’t up-to-snuff.

A reason not to buy the 2021 Tesla Model Y: fit and finish

2021 Tesla Model Y electric crossover, there are a few reasons not to buy one.
Tesla Model Y qualifies for a Top Safety Pick+ Award From the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) | Tesla

Reviewers like Car and Driver and KBB both note the Model Y’s “fit and finish” as a negative in their reviews of the electric crossover. If you’re not aware of precisely what that means, it’s the way the car is put together. There have been many complaints about the build quality of Tesla Model Y models throughout 2021. Plenty of people have experienced panels coming apart, which are similar to that of the Tesla Model 3.

That comes as no surprise since the Model 3 and Y have a lot in common. Like with most automotive issues, it’s not going to happen with every unit. However, paying well over $50,000 for an electric crossover shouldn’t come with the anxiety of questioning the vehicle’s build quality. After spending a year with their Model Ys, owners told Auto Evolution about their experience in this area.

“The left rear door has broken twice and the hatchback sometimes sticks halfway up even though it’s been realigned once. The piano-black trim is nearly impossible to keep clean, and the same can be said about the white upholstery that attracts blue from one’s jeans on the seat bottoms and fine dirt on the door cards. Another point of contention is the panoramic glass roof, which could use a shade on hot summer days,” Auto Evolution said of a 2021 Tesla Model Y.

Do not buy the 2021 Tesla Model Y because of its overreliance on the touchscreen

Solid Black 2022 Tesla Model Y electric crossover, there are a few reasons not to buy one.
Solid Black 2022 Tesla Model Y | Tesla

As Car and Driver and other major reviewers noted, the Model Y relies too much on the massive screen. While it is nice to have a 15-inch infotainment screen, it can also be a hassle. Using the screen for every single control in the vehicle becomes more of a nuisance than it’s worth after a while. For instance, climate control, the speedometer, and other features are all on the large center screen.

It can take some getting used to, especially for those who frequently change the temperature or radio settings while driving. Using things like Netflix and controls for when you’re parked are fine. However, using certain things on the fly can be a bit distracting. Other automakers are implementing large screens with some physical knobs and buttons thrown in, which we think is ideal.

The 2021 Tesla Model Y does not have Apple CarPlay/Android Auto capability

Gone are the days of a janky navigation and audio system within your car’s infotainment system. No one ever really liked the laggy and confusing user interface that came in vehicles. That’s why many drivers want the best smartphone vehicle tools ever created in their car, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Whether you own an Apple or Android smartphone, these software products turn your car’s display into your phone.

These make it incredibly easy to control music, phone calls, texts, navigation, and more without any hassle. Voice integration makes it easy for drivers to manage everything as well. Unfortunately, this feature is unavailable in the 2021 Tesla Model Y. You’ll have to use the standard Tesla UI, which isn’t as good. While most new cars in 2022 have this feature as a standard, you can’t get it in this electric crossover even if you pay $62,190 for the Performance model.

In conclusion, the 2021 Tesla Model Y is an incredible electric crossover with some problems. Many of the problems are enough to make us shy away from buying one. Problems like a poor fit and finish, overreliance on the touchscreen, and no Apple CarPlay/Android Auto are significant reasons not to buy one. Additionally, other automakers are entering the electric vehicle space, so plenty of new electric crossover options are coming.


Fisker Ocean Crossover EV Could Kill the Tesla Model Y