A strange thing happened to a Canadian Tesla Model 3 owner from Vancouver, British Columbia.
Rajesh Randev unintentionally managed to unlock someone else's Tesla and drive off in it, using the Tesla app on his own phone. The man thought he was getting into his car – which was the same make and colour and parked side by side – but he actually drove someone else's Tesla.
He told Global News he was in a hurry as he had to pick up his children from school, so he didn't pay much attention to the car, thinking it was his own.
Randev said he opened the door with his app, got in, and drove off. A while later, he started to realise something was not right as the car he was driving had a cracked windscreen. Upon calling his wife and learning that she didn't know about the crack either, he started to get suspicious, especially when he noticed that the charger was not where he usually kept it.
Moments later, the mystery started to unravel when he got a text message on his phone saying, "Hello Rajesh, do you drive a Tesla?" The message was from the actual owner of the vehicle, who informed him he was driving the wrong car.
After parking the vehicle, Randev noticed the wheels were different from his Model 3, so he called the person who texted him and acknowledged the mistake.
Gallery: 2022 Tesla Model 3
If you find this surprising, read on because the story gets even weirder. He was actually able to get in the car again, and he drove it to pick up his children from school. After that, he met with the rightful owner and handed the Tesla back. The owner told Randev he was able to text him because he saw a paper in his Tesla with his name and phone number.
As you can imagine, Randev says he does not know how this mixup was possible – and more importantly, how was he able to unlock another person's vehicle using the Tesla App on his smartphone.
"We were both laughing and I called the police as well. The police said they have my statement but they cannot give me a file number because nothing happened but if something does happen to let them know and they will investigate."
Randev said he contacted Tesla and submitted video evidence, but some of his emails bounced back – because Tesla's North American corporate mailbox is apparently full – and no one has contacted him so far. Given the serious implications of something similar happening on a larger scale, Tesla should investigate how this was possible and make sure it doesn't happen again.
One member of the InsideEVs Forum speculates the vehicle may have been left unlocked and in "Valet" mode, but there's no indication that was actually the case.