Upcoming Tesla Update Will Change Indicator Lights Due to Recall: A Look at the Changes

By Kevin Armstrong
NHTSA Recalls Font Size
NHTSA Recalls Font Size
Not a Tesla App

Here we go again. The mainstream media is jumping all over Tesla for a simple over-the-air update that fixes an unusual recall affecting nearly 2.2 million vehicles. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration flagged a non-compliance issue concerning the font size of the Brake, Park, and Antilock Brake System visual warning indicators on the vehicle's dashboard display.

The Nature of the Issue

Our favorite Tesla hacker, @greentheonly, noticed something in update 2023.44.30.13, stating, “I thought it's no big deal, but apparently it is.

Tesla is changing the indicator lights in their vehicles
Tesla is changing the indicator lights in their vehicles
Greentheonly / Not a Tesla App

At the heart of the recall is relatively minor -- the font size used for specific dashboard warning indicators. According to NHTSA's findings, the font size used in Tesla's vehicle displays did not meet the minimum requirements set by Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards Nos. 105 and 135. This discrepancy raised concerns that the smaller font could reduce the driver's ability to quickly recognize and respond to critical safety warnings, thereby increasing the risk of a collision.

Update 2023.44.30.13

FSD 11.4.9
Installed on 0% of fleet
0 Installs today
Last updated: Jul 11, 6:42 am UTC

In a response highlighting Tesla’s unique capabilities, the company addressed this issue through an over-the-air software update. No need to bring the vehicle into the service center, Tesla remotely updates the affected vehicles, enlarging the font size of the warning indicators to meet regulatory standards. The updates began rolling out last month.

The Debate Around Recall Terminology

The incident has once again reignited discussions around the terminology and procedures used to classify and manage vehicle recalls in the era of connected and software-driven automobiles. Tesla and Elon Musk have previously criticized the traditional recall system, arguing that "recall" is misleading when issues can be resolved through OTA software updates. This latest event underscores the growing gap between conventional automotive recall practices and the capabilities of electric vehicle technology, prompting calls for regulatory bodies to modernize their approach to reflect these advancements.

Another mystifying aspect of the mainstream media’s contempt for Tesla is the number of other physical recalls issued to legacy automakers. Tesla has far fewer recalls, yet when the company does, it is big news, despite the fact that the problem is usually solved before the recall is even published, and it is done in a matter of seconds with an OTA update. As Tesla continues to innovate and lead in the electric vehicle sector and the entire industry, the company's approach to addressing recalls through OTA updates is setting a new standard.

Tesla Introduces Most Affordable Car: Long Range RWD Model 3 with 363-Mile Range for $34,990

By Karan Singh
Not a Tesla App

Tesla has brought back the Model 3 Long Range Rear-Wheel Drive variant, which starts at $42,490. However, due to the batteries in the Long Range model, it qualifies for the $7,500 federal EV rebate. This makes this new model the cheapest model in Tesla’s lineup after the federal rebate that comes off at the point of sale.

After the federal rebate, this model is $34,990, exactly $4,000 less than the standard RWD model with the smaller LFP battery.

Improved Range

The Long Range RWD variant boasts a range of 363mi (vs 341mi for the AWD, and 272mi for the regular RWD), and a 0-60mph of 4.9sec (vs 4.2sec for the AWD). This makes the new Long Range RWD Model 3 Tesla’s longest-range economic vehicle (Model 3 / Model Y). The Model S AWD boasts an impressive 402-mile EPA estimate.

Other than the lack of a front motor for handling in rough or slippery terrain, or having a faster 0-60, the Long Range RWD is a fantastic option for most people.

It’s worth noting that only the Long Range AWD model can unlock Tesla’s Acceleration Boost, which increases power and reduces the vehicle’s 0-60 times by about half a second.

Model

Price

Price After Rebate

0-60 MPH

Range

Model 3 RWD

$38,990

-

5.8s

272mi

Model 3 LR RWD

$42,490

$34,990

4.9s

363mi

Model 3 LR AWD

$47,490

$39,990

4.2s

341mi

Model 3 Performance

$54,990

$47,490

2.9s

303mi

Availability

For now, the Model 3 Long Range RWD model is only available in the United States, with no availability in Canada.

Tesla FSD V12.5 to Combine City and Highway Stacks, Introduce Vehicle-to-Fleet Communication and More

By Karan Singh
Not a Tesla App

As FSD V12.4.3 continues to get released to more vehicles, Elon Musk has posted that FSD V12.5 is already in testing and will include several key features.

The improvements in v12.5 are supposed to focus on rarer, more complex situations and vehicle-to-fleet communication. Tesla’s Autopilot lead, Ashok Elluswamy, also mentioned that FSD would gain the ability to go in reverse around this time.

Merge City & Highway Stacks

FSD v12 has been a multi-stack setup so far, with a city-streets stack that is end-to-end, and an older highway stack that was carried over from v11. FSD v12.5 will once again merge the city/highway stacks according to Musk, who confirmed the feature yesterday. That means that there will no longer be an implicit highway stack.

This could cause some regressions during highway driving, similar to the ones we experienced when Tesla first merged highway and city stacks back in FSD v11. Ultimately, when the issues were ironed out, we ended up with a smoother and better Autopilot experience on the highway. When FSD v12.5 rolls around, we may see some similar issues but expect FSD v12.5 to do to highways what v12 did for city driving.

Vehicle-to-Fleet Communications

Tesla’s FSD relies heavily upon maps, with the mapping information designating routing and lane changes. When vehicles encounter difficulties, they are unable to communicate that back to the rest of the fleet. This results in every vehicle encountering the same problem. With FSD V12.5, vehicles will be able to communicate road closures or other obstacles back to the rest of the fleet in real-time. This will turn FSD into software that’s constantly improving as the fleet gathers more data, instead of having to wait for a software update.

Cybertruck Finally Gets FSD

In a recent post on X, Musk also confirmed that V12.5 will finally bring FSD to the Cybertruck. Currently, all Cybertrucks only have access to Traffic Aware Cruise Control (TACC). Autopilot and FSD capabilities should arrive alongside all the other features.

Actually Smart Summon

Musk has talked quite a bit about Actually Smart Summon. With FSD 12.5, the new vision-based summon may finally be released. This will introduce Smart Summon capabilities to vision-only cars for the first time. However, it’s expected to be a drastic improvement for all vehicles in similar ways to the new Autopark. The new summon has been tied to the ability to move the vehicle in reverse by Tesla’s Autopilot lead, so expect either both of them to arrive in FSD 12.5, or be held off for a later release.

Release Date

Musk originally mentioned that FSD V12.5 would be released in late June, however, there were several delays with FSD 12.4 and that time frame has now come and gone. FSD 12.4 was initially released in May 2024, but it went through several lengthy revisions before it was introduced to public testers. Going by that time frame, it appears that FSD 12.5 was expected to be released about 4-6 weeks after FSD 12.4. If FSD 12.4.3 is finally got a good spot, we could see FSD 12.5 become available in the next 4-6 weeks or about late August.

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