All posts in “Tesla Model S”

Tesla adds autonomous parking mode to Model 3

The Model 3 can now park itself. Called Summon, the feature is now available on the company’s new sedan.

It’s a clever feature that takes advantage of the vehicle’s connectivity and autonomous driving capabilities. With Summon owners can command their Model 3 to pull into a parking spot and power down. It can even control garage doors — all without a driver behind the wheel or controlling the vehicle remotely. Tesla added the feature to Model S and Model X vehicles last year.

This is the latest feature Tesla added to the Model 3 after its launch. The company is in a frenzy to keep up with production goals and the nature of the Model 3’s connected platform allows the company to added features to already-built vehicles.

Tesla updates user interface, web browser in older Model S and Model X vehicles

A new update is bringing an improved user interface to older Tesla vehicles. According to this report citing forum users, the v8.1 (2018.12) update improves the speed and capability in Model S and Model X vehicles equipped with an Nvidia Tegra 3-powered MCU. This was expected; Musk stated in late December 2017 that Tesla was working to improve the browser for all its vehicles.

Users discovered the browser speed is dramatically faster, able to download at an average of over 5 Mbps. HTML5 capabilities also improved. This is just the latest in Tesla’s on-going mission to improve its vehicles after customers buy them.

Tesla launched the Model S with the Tegra 3 SoC and ran with it until late 2017 when the company switched to new x86_64-powered MCUs. Last month Elon Musk confirmed through Twitter that it was possible to retrofit older vehicles with new MCUs.

Though possible to upgrade older vehicles, it’s better for the consumer, and likely for the company, to upgrade existing hardware than make drivers bring in vehicles for a hardware upgrade.

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Tesla made this feature to quell concerns about becoming stranded in the middle of nowhere

Tesla’s latest feature doesn’t even require owning one of its vehicles. 

The electric car company today launched an online trip planning tool that shows people where they can drive around the U.S. in a Tesla. 

Although anyone is free to explore the tool, it’s designed for prospective Tesla customers — perhaps those concerned about running out of battery life while stranded on a lonely, windswept New Mexican highway during monsoon season. Tesla owners already have this specialized navigation tool in their cars, but now, it’s being made available to everyone on the website.

The tool is easy to use: After selecting the type of Tesla (Model S, Model X, or the new Model 3) and battery type (ranges vary from 259 miles to 310 miles), enter a starting point and destination. The Tesla planner will show you the route you can take to recharge along the way using both Tesla Supercharger stations and charging at destinations. 

For example, a trip from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon Village in Arizona looks like this:

Image: mashable

This 491-mile trip in a Tesla Model 3 (its new affordable class vehicle) requires two charging stops — one for 45 minutes, and the other for 55 minutes — bringing the trip to a total of nine hours and 19 minutes. 

The same trip planned using Google Maps takes an identical route, and Google estimates about a seven hour and 22 minute driving time. This is nearly two hours shorter, but doesn’t account for gas station stops, and general rest stops. 

Tesla also provides an estimated gas savings (in this case $20). At Telsa’s Supercharger stations, the company bills per minute, although the Model S and Model X receive around 1,000 miles of Supercharger credit annually. 

Lastly, unlike Google Maps, Tesla’s trip planner asks any impressed users if they’d like to either buy or reserve their very own Tesla. 

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Tesla had a rocky year, but owners are still extremely satisfied with their cars

Tesla is currently mired in “production hell,” but owners are still extremely satisfied with their brand new all-electric vehicles.

In Consumer Reports’ 2017 Annual Owner Satisfaction Survey, the popular review publication found Tesla topped the vehicle satisfaction survey — for the third straight year. 

Consumer Reports says the satisfaction score is “based on whether an owner says he or she would buy the same car again” and “measures whether a car lives up to expectations.” Additionally, survey responders rate things like driving experience, comfort, and climate systems. Half a million surveys were collected. 

Tesla took first place with a score of 90, followed by Porsche with 85. Other select placings: Subaru took seventh place, Toyota eighth, Ford seventeenth, and Acura dead last, at thirtieth. 

Part of Tesla’s and Porsche’s success, noted Consumer Reports, is “that cars that meet owner expectations consistently score well. Sports cars like the Porsche 911, Chevrolet Corvette, and Mazda MX-5 Miata are hits because they deliver the driving fun that their owners were looking for.”

The report took into account the luxury Tesla Model X and Model S — both of which are high-performance, high-cost vehicles. The Model 3 — which is Tesla’s affordable class sedan (starting at around $35,000) — was not included in the survey simply because the vehicles are just now being delivered to customers. This fall, the Model 3 hit some well-publicized production delays, and CEO Elon Musk said the company was in “production hell.”

For that reason, the small quantity of Model 3s released have mostly been given to Tesla employees or relatives of employees. Even Elon Musk’s own mother will have to wait her turn for a Model 3

The latest Tesla model, then, will figure prominently in next year’s satisfaction score. Customers aren’t buying the Model 3 for fun and entertainment. They want a car to fulfill the everyday demands of value, safety, and battery economy. 

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These cars are the Tesla Roadster’s competition for the ultimate speed record

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Elon Musk’s “one more thing” moment to show off the new Tesla Roadster at the automaker’s Semi event wasn’t just impressive — it was (potentially) record setting.  

The new four-seater boasts some absolutely ludicrous speed stats. When Musk rattled through the numbers onstage, he claimed that all of them have been achieved by the Roadster prototype, and they’d stand as new records for a production car.:

 Musk has been known to make outsized claims about his technology before exactly achieving them IRL, but the actual performance of his other all-electric vehicles borders on legendary. We’re more inclined to believe him when he claims the Roadster will be the fastest, quickest production car in the world than say, his statements that the Boring Company was granted permission to tunnel on the East Coast of the US — but the Roadster will still have to show what it can do in public to take the crown. 

Once Tesla’s Roadster has a chance to show off the goods, it’ll come up against some seriously stiff competition. Here are the current leaders in each of the speed categories highlighted by Musk, which will hold tight to their records until the Roadster can beat them.   

0 to 60 mph: Tesla Model S P100D

Current record: 2.28 seconds

Roadster edge: 0.38 seconds

Image: tesla

The Roadster is bound to create a new family rivalry at its launch, since the only car that has ever recorded a faster 0 to 60 acceleration time is Tesla’s own Model S P100D. The high-end version of Tesla’s sedan hit the mark at 2.28 seconds in its top-level Ludicrous Easter egg Mode back in February

0 to 100 mph: Dodge Demon

Current record: 5.1 seconds

Roadster edge: 0.9 seconds

Image: dodge

Dodge’s throwback muscle car is being marketed as the world’s first street-legal production drag racer, so you know it’s bound to be fast. The Demon is so powerful that Automotive News even wants it banned from public roads, but it’s still made its way to dealerships. The Demon can’t match Tesla from 0 to 60 mph — but it has the electric cars (and everyone else) beat from 0 to 100 mph, reaching the mark in just 5.1 seconds.  

Quarter Mile: Dodge Demon

Current record: 9.65 seconds

Roadster edge: 0.75 seconds

Image: dodge

The top spot for the quarter mile goes to: the Demon again. The tricked-out Challenger hit the mark at an National Hotrod Association (NHRA)-certified 9.65 seconds, reaching a top speed of 140.09 mph. 

Top Speed: Koenigsegg Agera RS

Current record: 277.9 mph

Roadster edge: ????

Image: koenigsegg

Swedish hypercar Koenigsegg Agera RS is the current holder of the title for fastest production car by top speed. The stylish two-door is more limited than the other cars on the list — only 25 will be produced — but it’s still considered a production vehicle. Elon Musk declined to share the maximum speed of the Roadster at the Tesla Semi event, declaring that it’ll top out “over 250 mph.” The electric monster will have to be almost 30 mph faster than promised to take the crown from Koenigsegg, which set the record earlier this month at 277.9 mph.

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