In a bizarre story that gently reminds us that too much technology can sometimes be a bad thing, a Tesla Model S owner named Ryan Negri recently found himself stranded in the Nevada desert after deciding to leave his key fob at home. In its place, Negri brought along his trusty iPhone which can just as easily start the car via Tesla’s Keyless Driving feature.
In a story originally posted to Instagram, Negri explains that he simply wanted to take his Model S out for a little spin around Red Rock Canyon and take a few scenic photos with his wife and two dogs. However, once Negri exited the car a few miles into the excursion, he quickly discovered that he was unable to restart it with his iPhone because he had no cellular service.
“I forgot when you get out of the drivers seat, you have to re-initiate the sequence to unlock keyless driving,” Negri said in an interview with Mashable.
Compounding matters was that Negri was a good six miles from his home. So although Negri was able to access the Model S display and even play music, his car was nonetheless relegated to a 5,000 pound immovable brick without a cellular connection at his disposal.
As to how Negri emerged from could have easily been a harrowing situation, he explains that his wife — who he rightfully praises as a hero — took off in search of higher ground and some cell service. After a two mile trek, she received a signal and was able to call a friend who ultimately brought them their abandoned key fob.
This story thankfully had a happy ending but it could have easily gone the other way. The obvious lesson here is that you’ll want to keep your key fob on you at all times no matter how advanced your car’s smartphone app might be.
Negri’s full Instagram post can be read below.
Stranded 6 miles from home, 2 miles from cell service; our Saturday morning. The thought was to go for a quick drive to take some photos of the freshly-fallen mountain snow. Having only my phone in my pocket, I unlocked and started the car with it, and we left. 6 miles down the road we decided to turn back, but before that, had to adjust Mozy & Millie's car bed, so I exited the vehicle…bad idea. Need to restart the car now, but, with no cell service, my phone can't connect to the car to unlock it. Even with cell service, the car would also need cell service to receive the signal to unlock. @amymnegri, the hero she is, started running to reach cell service height. After about 2 miles she reached signal and called a friend for a ride to the house to grab the key fob. The key that will always be with me (now) when I drive that car.