Tesla will now scan for potholes and detect rough road segments in 2022.20

By Lennon Cihak
Tesla lets you fine-tune your air suspension
Tesla lets you fine-tune your air suspension

Tesla will now leverage its fleet of vehicles to help locate rough road segments or non-paved roads.

Although the entire fleet will be contributing, the first vehicles to take advantage of this information will be Tesla’s Model X and Model S vehicles with an adaptive air suspension.

These cars will soon be getting a smoother ride.

Many Tesla owners have requested that their vehicles learn and adapt to rough roads.

CEO Elon Musk has stated that adaptive air suspension will remain a luxury feature and will stay exclusive to the Model S and Model X, although it's possible other vehicles in the future can take advantage of knowing the location of rough road segments by either slowing down or avoiding potholes.

In November 2020, @JohnEG78 tweeted to Musk stating, “I would like voice commands for air suspension ride height.”

Musk responded, “Ok. Overall air suspension height & dampening algorithm is getting a lot of attention. Will be linked to FSD, so [it] acts automatically.”

Update 2022.20 has just started going out to select vehicles and one of the key features in the update is "Tesla Adaptive Suspension."

This feature will let your Tesla with an adaptive suspension automatically lower or raise depending on the type of road. So if you're driving and encounter a gravel or dirt road your vehicle will now automatically adjust its suspension for a smoother ride.

As Tesla ramps up their FSD rollout, the amount of real-world data that Tesla has collected is most likely more than any other automotive company.

Tesla can use this data gathered by the Tesla fleet to automatically adjust the ride height.

Update 2022.20

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Last updated: Sep 22, 3:07 am

If more data is needed or something is inaccurate, a button on the screen or voice command would be a nice addition to report it to Tesla, similar to Tesla's FSD Beta report button.

While we don't have pothole detection and avoidance just yet this could be the start of such a feature.

“Tesla Adaptive Suspension will now adjust ride height for an upcoming rough road section. This adjustment may occur at various locations, subject to availability, as the vehicle downloads rough road map data generated by Tesla cars. The instrument cluster will continue to indicate when the suspension is raised for comfort. To enable this feature, tap Controls > Suspension > Adaptive Suspension Damping, and select the Comfort or Auto setting.”

While potholes may be more difficult for the vehicle to detect, having a built-in system similar to Waze where users can report where the pothole is could be useful. With Waze, users can report a number of issues on the road, including police presence, objects on the road, construction, accidents, and more.

If a pothole is repaired, Tesla could utilize indicators that compare the amount of times the pothole is being reported by the driver or vehicle to before it was repaired. If there are no reports of that pothole in the road anymore, Tesla’s AI could mark that pothole as repaired and remove it from the notification system or adaptive air suspension.

Adjusting Tesla's Air Suspension

A Closer Look at Tesla's Ambient Lighting Feature in the New Model 3 and Cybertruck [Video]

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla introduced a wrap-around ambient lighting strip to its new Model 3
Tesla introduced a wrap-around ambient lighting strip to its new Model 3
crospotter13

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.

Supported Models

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.

Customization

Tesla introduced a wrap-around ambient lighting strip to its new Model 3
Tesla introduced a wrap-around ambient lighting strip to its new Model 3
AutoTopNL

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.

Future Enhancements

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 Model 3 'Highland' Performance Details Discovered in European Documents

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla's new Model 3 received a host of exterior and interior upgrades
Tesla's new Model 3 received a host of exterior and interior upgrades
Tesla

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
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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