Tesla's Project Juniper Focuses on the Model Y; Don't Expect a Major Refresh

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla will refresh its Model Y with minor refinements to the interior and exterior of the vehicle
Tesla will refresh its Model Y with minor refinements to the interior and exterior of the vehicle
Tesla

Tesla is gearing up for a production overhaul of its top-selling Model Y with the code name Project Juniper. It’s a fitting code name because juniper is an evergreen shrub, and according to Merriam-Webster's Dictionary, evergreen is retaining freshness or interest; universally and continually relevant. Reuters reports the update will include changes to the electric vehicle's exterior and interior and is set to begin production in October 2024.

Don't Expect A Complete Refresh

A source has told us not to expect a complete refresh, much like the Model S and Model X went through in 2021, but more of a refinement in various areas. This will not be a major redesign, internally or externally, however, the exterior of the vehicle is expected to have more changes. Much like the Model 3's upcoming changes with Project Highland, the majority of these changes are focused on cost-cutting.

Cost-Cutting

A large portion of the Investor Day presentation focused on cutting costs and finding more efficient processes while using a smaller footprint to do so. Tesla CEO was asked if this process would go into the Model Y. “Retooling a factory means bringing a factory down for an extended period of time, I prefer not to do that, I think. There are variants on how Model Y is produced. We’ve got variance where there is a rear casting, where there is a front and rear casting, and we have the structural battery pack. There are a number of small improvements that occur. For the really big changes those would be future vehicles.”

The Model S and Model X have been refreshed, and the new Model 3, code name Highland, is underway. This is a significant move for Tesla, as the Model Y is its top-selling vehicle and was the top-selling EV in the world last year. As the global leader in EV sales, the Model Y has a target on its back, so it's important to keep it fresh. Project Juniper will deepen Tesla's already massive production cost advantages over the competition and address pressure in markets like China and the United States for a visible reboot of its best-selling vehicles.

It was not immediately clear how sweeping the revamp would be or what specific changes or improvements Tesla was looking to deliver with the new Model Y. However, we expect that the many changes that Tesla is applying to the Model 3 in Project Highland will also carry over to the Model Y. The company has reportedly asked suppliers for quotes for exterior and interior components that will be used in the new version of the Model Y.

A Trip Down Memory Lane: The Electrifying Rivalry Between Elon Musk and Jeremy Clarkson [Video]

By Kevin Armstrong
Elon Musk and Jeremy Clarkson have an ongoing feud
Elon Musk and Jeremy Clarkson have an ongoing feud
Elon Musk Viral Videos/YouTube

The automotive world has witnessed many rivalries throughout history, but none quite as electrifying as the ongoing feud between Tesla CEO Elon Musk and British television presenter Jeremy Clarkson. These two larger-than-life personalities have consistently butted heads over electric vehicles, Tesla's performance, and the future of transportation. Let's take a trip down memory lane and relive some of the most memorable moments from this epic battle of wits and opinions.

The Spark That Ignited the Feud

It all began in 2008, when Clarkson, then a host of the popular British television show Top Gear, reviewed Tesla's first production car (video below), the Roadster. In Season 12, Episode 7, Clarkson was critical of the Roadster's range and reliability, with the segment featuring the car running out of battery and breaking down. Tesla quickly claimed that the breakdown was staged for dramatic effect, a claim that BBC denied.

The Aftermath and Legal Action

Tesla didn't take Clarkson's review lightly. In 2011, the electric car manufacturer filed a lawsuit against BBC, alleging defamation and malicious falsehood. However, the British High Court dismissed the case in 2013, with the judge stating that no Top Gear viewer would have reasonably compared the Roadster's performance to that of a traditional sports car based on the episode.

The War of Words

The legal battle didn't put an end to the rivalry. Over the years, Musk and Clarkson exchanged barbs through interviews and social media. In a 2018 interview with The Independent, Clarkson called Musk "an idiot" and claimed they "almost had a fight." In response, Musk took to Twitter and called Clarkson "weird" and "rude." In 2021, Clarkson talked about Musk's kids' unique names and suggested he call them "John or Jane or whatever."

The Twitter Battle

The rivalry between Musk and Clarkson has expanded beyond the realm of electric vehicles. Recently, Clarkson shared his thoughts on Musk's new Twitter laws and claimed that the new CEO should be paying him to use the social media network. In his Sunday Times column, Clarkson expressed his outrage at the proposed new costs for blue tick verification. He argued that he brings in advertising for the platform and should not be paying for the verification. This latest episode showcases the enduring feud between these two influential figures.

The Autopilot Debate

Clarkson has also criticized Tesla's Autopilot feature, questioning its safety and reliability. He once called it "an accident waiting to happen" after a fatal accident involving a Tesla Model S operating on Autopilot in 2016. However, Musk has dismissed Clarkson's concerns as biased and uninformed, insisting that critics have an outdated view of electric vehicles and are resistant to change.

The Model X Review and Beyond

Despite his new-found popularity, Clarkson didn't shy away from critiquing Tesla. In a 2019 episode of The Grand Tour, he reviewed the Tesla Model X, acknowledging its advancements while questioning its design and practicality. Clarkson said, "The truth is, the world's most hated car company has changed the world," but he also questioned whether electric vehicles would ever fully replace internal combustion engine cars.

The Grand Tour and Clarkson's Farm

After leaving Top Gear, Clarkson and co-presenters Richard Hammond and James May launched The Grand Tour on Amazon Studios. The show continued to feature Tesla vehicles and maintain a critical stance on electric cars. However, Clarkson's image softened with the release of his show Clarkson's Farm, which showcased his love for farming and the challenges he faced in running a farm. The show garnered a new fan base and a more sympathetic public image, but he still prefers internal combustion.

Reconciliation?

In a surprising twist, Elon Musk appeared on Top Gear in 2020, discussing Tesla's progress and the future of electric vehicles with the show's presenters. Though Clarkson was not involved in the episode, the appearance marked a notable moment in the rivalry's history.

The ongoing feud between Elon Musk and Jeremy Clarkson is a fascinating chapter in the automotive world. As electric vehicles become increasingly popular, the rivalry between these two influential figures serves as a reminder of the broader debate surrounding the future of transportation. With the latest development involving Twitter, it's clear that their rivalry continues to evolve and shows no signs of slowing down. Fans of both individuals can only wait and see what the next chapter holds for this electrifying tale.

Tesla Adds New 'Manual' App in Software Update 2023.6

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla added a new 'Manual' app that contains tips and answers popular questions
Tesla added a new 'Manual' app that contains tips and answers popular questions
Ultimate_Bulter/Reddit (Edited by Not a Tesla App)

The Tesla community is always exploring their vehicle, and lucky for us, they share what they find. For example, a recent discovery by a Reddit user Ultimate_Bulter has revealed an undocumented update in Tesla's latest software version, 2023.6.8. The user found a hidden icon labeled 'Manual' in the vehicle's infotainment center, leading to Tesla tips and the Tesla User Manual App, which was added in the 2023.6 update.

This app does more than merely open the in-car manual; it offers an interactive guide for common questions for Tesla owners.

Two Sections

The Tesla Manual App is divided into two sections: "Get to Know Your Tesla" and "Owner's Manual." The former is an interactive guide designed to help Tesla owners become more familiar with their vehicle's features, while the latter contains detailed information on every aspect of the car.

Get to Know Your Tesla

"Get to Know Your Tesla" contains popular topics related to the vehicle's features, functionality, and maintenance. This section is designed to be an interactive and user-friendly way for new and existing Tesla owners to familiarize themselves with their car's features. It includes buttons that, when pressed, can perform actions such as opening the glovebox or activating the windshield wipers. This innovative approach helps users quickly understand and navigate their vehicle's numerous features.

Owner's Manual

The "Owner's Manual" section of the app offers a comprehensive guide to every aspect of the car. This portion of the app includes in-depth information on everything from vehicle maintenance to troubleshooting and beyond. Tesla owners can access this section to find answers to their questions and better understand their car's various systems and components. The vehicle's user manual was already available in the car through Controls > Service > Owner's Manual, but linking to it through this new app makes it more discoverable.

Undocumented Update

Tesla added a new 'Manual' app that contains tips and answers popular questions
Tesla added a new 'Manual' app that contains tips and answers popular questions
Ultimate_Bulter/Reddit (Edited by Not a Tesla App)

The Tesla User Manual App's inclusion in the 2023.6.8 update appears to have gone undocumented, as it was not listed in the official release notes. This has led to speculation that the app was meant to be a surprise or "Easter egg" feature for Tesla owners to discover. The Reddit user's discovery has since been met with excitement and appreciation from the Tesla community, who have praised the app for its interactive and user-friendly design.

The Tesla User Manual App offers a fresh and innovative approach to vehicle user guides, taking advantage of the car's advanced infotainment system. This app's interactive nature allows Tesla owners to familiarize themselves with their vehicle's features and troubleshoot issues more efficiently.

As more users uncover this hidden gem within their Tesla, it is expected Tesla will continue to add tips to the manual app. This discovery highlights Tesla's commitment to providing a unique and cutting-edge experience for its customers, even in the most unexpected places.

Recently Tesla updated it's owner's manual with updated recommendations on the weight limits for items in the frunk and trunk. The new limits apply to all vehicles and went up in most cases.

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Although we share official Tesla release notes, we are not affiliated with Tesla Motors. We are Tesla fans and supporters.

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