Tesla has re-released FSD Beta 11.3.6 on a newer branch
Not a Tesla App
Social media lit up early this morning as a new cohort of FSD Beta testers shared their excitement. For the first time, Tesla has re-released an existing FSD Beta version but based it on a newer branch. This makes this latest FSD Beta release available to all existing Tesla owners who subscribe to FSD or have purchased the FSD package.
Earlier this year, Tesla was compelled to issue an over-the-air (OTA) recall for more than 362,000 vehicles with FSD Beta installed. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) had raised concerns that under specific circumstances, the software might contravene local traffic regulations, potentially increasing collision risk if drivers failed to intervene.
Following the recall, Tesla halted the deployment of the software to new testers, putting a momentary brake on their FSD Capability option purchase or subscription. In March, Tesla resolved these issues with the release of FSD Beta 11.3.2, but new testers were still excluded from the rollout.
Tesla's FSD Beta is Back on Track
Late last night Tesla broke the ice by introducing the 2023.12.10 release, which includes FSD Beta 11.3.6. Notably, this release brings FSD Beta in line with the latest non-beta branch, a significant step forward in ensuring the continuous development of this innovative technology.
According to the release notes, this new beta update aligns with the existing 11.3.6 software version already in tester vehicles, which was version 2022.45.15. While this is excellent news for Tesla and its new testers, many were expecting to see beta 11.4.2, based on a recent tweet from CEO Elon Musk. Musk hinted that the 11.4.2 update would address "some easy-to-fix bugs" related to narrow roads and lane changes in heavy traffic.
With 11.3.6 being rolled out to new testers, it's hopeful that 11.4.2 will soon follow suit, bringing further enhancements to the FSD Beta software.
What Triggered the NHTSA Recall
Reflecting on the recall that led to the temporary rollout freeze, the NHTSA had identified several operational characteristics of the FSD Beta that could potentially infringe on local traffic laws. Issues raised included crossing intersections during a stale yellow traffic light, staying static at clear intersections for a prolonged period, adjusting vehicle speed in variable speed zones based on detected speed limit signs, and negotiating lane changes from certain turn-only lanes.
In the weeks following the recall, Tesla met with NHTSA representatives to discuss solutions. Despite initially disagreeing with the NHTSA’s analysis, Tesla has since issued a voluntary recall and promised a software update to remedy the issues.
The NHTSA's ongoing scrutiny of Tesla's Autopilot and FSD Beta software indicates the rigorous standards required for autonomous driving technologies. As Tesla rolls out its updated FSD Beta to new testers, it's clear that the company is committed to ensuring its technology's safety and continuous improvement.
Moving forward, all eyes will be on the imminent arrival of FSD Beta 11.4.2 and further developments in Tesla's pursuit of autonomous driving.
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Tesla introduced a wrap-around ambient lighting strip to its new Model 3
If you look up ambient lights for Tesla, you'll see several ads for third-party light kits. Perhaps this is why Tesla added its own Ambient Lights feature to the new Model 3. So, let's get enlightened.
Tesla's ambient lights are thin light strips that are embedded in each of the vehicle's doors near the top edge. It also curves around the dashboard near the windshield, giving passengers a near 360-degree light effect.
Tesla new ambient light feature is available on the new Model 3 (2024+), and will be available on the Cybertruck in a similar manner. With a refresh ongoing for the Model Y, known as Juniper, it will likely also have ambient lights. That just leaves out the most luxurious flagship vehicles, the Model S and X, for now.
The Model S and Model X could be due for a minor refresh that would not only add ambient lighting, but also include a front-bumper camera that the Cybertruck has and the new Model 3 is expected to have in the near future.
Tesla introduced a wrap-around ambient lighting strip to its new Model 3
The ambient light settings allow you to light up the interior in a color that reflects your mood or preference. Under Controls > Lights > Accent Lights, you are handed the freedom to choose virtually any color to adorn the interior of your Tesla.
You have control over whether the ambient lights are on, off, or set to an "Auto" setting, though not fully clarified, seems to promise intelligent lighting adjustments akin to our control over dome lights, offering a reduction in reflections during drives.
While the ability to control the brightness level seems missing, Tesla did include color presets, letting you curate a series of your favorite colors.
It should be noted that the changes are confined to the light strips on the doors and dash, steering clear of the footwell lights and other interior lighting.
With Tesla, we can be assured there will be enhancements to this feature in a future update. In fact, the Tesla community is already busy coming up with useful suggestions. Some owners thought Tesla should take advantage of the lighting to provide driver feedback, such as automatically changing the ambient lighting to a red hue when there's a vehicle in your blind spot. Tesla could also glow the light strip on a door if it's not closed properly, or use the lighting to provide feedback when Sentry Mode is enabled.
Other uses could be more fun, such as cycling the light through various colors when the 'Rainbow Road' easter egg is activated.
Ambient Lighting in Action
While the possibilities are endless and Tesla engineers will surely have fun coming up with creative uses for the feature, the biggest improvement we can hope for in the near future is the ability to adjust the light intensity.
Tesla's new Model 3 received a host of exterior and interior upgrades
Tesla outdid itself with the refreshed Model 3, known as the Highland. Despite all the fantastic upgrades, something is missing - the Performance version or perhaps the Plaid. The letter "T" has shown up on vehicle certificates in Europe, and despite Elon Musk's sense of humor, it is unlikely this is a Mr. T reference.
Deciphering the 'T'
A new document shows the new Model 3 Performance will have a dual motor
eivissacopter / X
Diligent scrutiny of the European Type Certificate, issued by the Dutch vehicle authority RDW and shared on the TFF Forum, revealed a subtle yet pivotal alteration — including the letter 'T' in the eighth digit of the Model 3 Performance's VIN.
This seemingly minor detail, indicative of the vehicle's motor/drive unit type, sparked curiosity and speculation on the forum. Could it be a tri-motor setup to usher in a new Plaid version of the Model 3? This vehicle has already got endless amounts of zip, but three motors? May The Schwartz Be With You!
This could also explain the Model 3+ badging that was spotted during the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) in China inspection of the refresh. However, the regulatory filings highlighted just two distinct variants of the car: a rear-wheel drive (RWD) with a 194 kW motor and an all-wheel drive (AWD) dual-motor setup that combines to deliver a formidable 331 kW of maximum power.
Initial conjectures leaned towards the possibility of a tri-motor setup, drawing parallels with the Plaid variants of the Model S and Model X. However, a deeper dive into the certification document clarified that the Model 3 Performance retained its Dual Motor setup, dispelling the possibility of a tri-motor upgrade.
Strategic Enhancements: A Glimpse into Potential Upgrades
Given the documented specifications, it becomes plausible that Tesla has strategically enhanced one of the dual motors, potentially aligning it with the advanced motor found in the Model S/X Plaid. This modification is poised to augment the top-end speed and acceleration of the Model 3 Performance, addressing its comparative limitations in extended races against traditional gas-powered supercars.
Meanwhile, the Model 3 refresh has become the new Bigfoot of the roads of North America, with rare sightings posted on social media. However, it appears the continent is excluded from the initial launch of the Model 3 Highland. Internal communications within Tesla suggest North American enthusiasts might have to exercise patience until 2024.
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