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Former Tesla owner 'locked out of his car until he pays $26,000 for a new battery'

Former Tesla owner 'locked out of his car until he pays $26,000 for a new battery'

Safe to say this Tesla owner wasn't best pleased.

Tesla has a cult following, but not everyone is quite so thrilled by Elon Musk's electric vehicles.

It seems like one of those people is Mario Zelaya, who goes by @supermariozelaya on TikTok.

Last year, he posted about his trials and tribulations with his white $140,000 Tesla - and Zelaya didn't mince his words, calling the car a 'piece of trash'.

In TikTok videos, Zelaya said that he was trying to sell the car because the battery died, meaning he was locked out of it.

According to Zelaya, his initial options seemed to be to dismantle the car to get in (which he said he 'didn't have time' to do), or buy a new battery (which he said would cost him $26,000).

He captioned his TikTok video: "$26K for a new battery. Locked out of car. Recalls are needed."

Zelaya decided instead he wanted to sell the car, but he had one major problem. "I can't sell the car because the ownership papers are in the car, and I have no way of accessing it," he said.

Luckily, there was an easy fix and Zelaya went to ServiceOntario - the Canadian verison of the DMV - and paid $30 to get the ownership papers.

In another video, Zelaya confirmed he'd successfully sold the vehicle.

Someone came to pick it up, and managed to turn it on by popping open the front and turning on the power through there.

Smith Collection/Gado / Contributor / Getty

According to Zelaya, his 2013 model experienced water leaking into the battery, causing it to stop working - and he said he'd been in contact with other motorists who'd allegedly experienced something similar.

In the 2012-2020 Model S user manual guide on the Tesla website for the US and Canada, it said that 'damage caused by water is not covered under warranty'. It also added: "If you leave it unplugged for an extended period, it may not be possible to charge or use Model S without jump starting or replacing the low voltage battery. Leaving Model S unplugged for an extended period can also result in permanent battery damage. If you are unable to charge Model S after attempting to jump start the low voltage battery, schedule a service appointment."

Tesla isn't the only car company Zelaya has targeted in his TikToks. In another video, he playfully skewers a bright red Ferrari sports car.

Tesla has hit the headlines recently when, in the middle of December, the company recalled over 2 million vehicles in the US, to fix a defective system that's supposed to ensure drivers are paying attention when they use the Autopilot mode.

It all comes after the much-hyped Cybertruck finally started being delivered to customers, and is increasingly being seen out in the wild. The pickups have proved divisive - some can't get over the chunky build and eye-watering prices, whereas others love the futuristic design and the fact it can apparently go from 0 to 60 in 2.6 seconds.

Tesla has been contacted for comment.

Featured Image Credit: TikTok / @‌supermariozelaya/Smith Collection/Gado / Contributor