The top features in any Tesla

By Andrew Hansen

Tesla is as much of a software company as they are a car manufacturer. In a Tesla, you'll find some of the most exciting features in any car, ranging from video streaming like Netflix to live footage of your car while it's parked.

Below are some of the top features in almost every Tesla.

A look at Tesla Features
A look at Tesla Features

Autopilot

Tesla's Autopilot offers traffic-aware cruise control (TACC) and autosteer. With TACC Tesla vehicles will automatically speed up and slow down depending on how close the vehicle in front is.

The driver just sets the maximum speed and the following distance and the car will automatically control its speed and distance from other vehicles.

Autosteer is a combination of TACC and the ability for Teslas to remain in their lanes.

If you have standard Autopilot, then the vehicle will steer itself so that it remains in its lane. If you have the Full Self-Driving (FSD) option, then your vehicle will perform additional functions, such as change lanes, get off and on highway ramps, and respond to traffic lights and stop signs.

Tesla is testing additional functionality with their FSD Beta program in the US that allows the vehicle to drive itself on city streets with driver supervision. The vehicle can perform unprotected left turns, wait for other vehicles, go around stopped cars or pedestrians, and more. However, the feature is currently in its early stages and requires the driver to take over often.

Each Tesla is fitted with eight external cameras, 12 ultrasonic sensors, and a powerful onboard computer to provide an additional layer of safety to guide you on your journey.

Sentry Mode

Sentry Mode is one of Tesla's most innovative features. It adds a unique layer of protection to the vehicles by continuously monitoring the environment around a car when it's left unattended.

When enabled, Sentry Mode enters a "standby" state, like a home alarm system. It uses the car's external cameras to detect potential threats. If it detects a minimal threat, such as someone leaning on the vehicle, Sentry Mode switches to an "alert" state. It'll flash the car's lights and displays a message on the touchscreen, warning bystanders that its cameras are recording.

When you return to the car, you'll be presented with recordings that had activity in them.

Sentry Mode is a great security feature and deterrent for prospective thieves. In addition, you can select if you want Sentry Mode to always be enabled or only enabled when you're not near certain locations like your home.

Dashcam

With the built-in Dashcam, there is no need to purchase a third-party solution. Instead, Tesla will constantly record from four different cameras around the vehicle while driving.

The videos are saved to a USB drive, making it easy to access them if needed. You can also view the videos directly in the vehicle.

Footage from the dashcam is automatically overridden after an hour unless you specifically choose to save it.

You can save the last ten minutes of footage by tapping the dashcam icon.

You can also have the car automatically save recordings for you if you're in an accident or when you honk the horn.

Connectivity

Connectivity is an essential part of all Tesla cars. There are two connection plans available. The first is the standard free plan that provides navigation, live traffic, the ability to connect to the car from your phone. Additional services are also available if you're connected to Wi-Fi or connected to your phone's hotspot.

The second plan available is Tesla's Premium Connectivity package. For $10 a month, you get access to a heap of features. These include live traffic visualizations, satellite-view maps, video streaming while in park (including Netflix, YouTube, etc), caraoke, music streaming (Spotify, Slacker, Tidal, and others), live camera access, and internet browsing.

Tesla Theater

Teslas come with a ton of entertainment options. They include video and audio streaming, games, easter eggs, and more.

Tesla vehicles are equipped with a video streaming that could be accessed while the vehicle is parked, or on a rear screen of a new Model S or Model X.

Video streaming includes Netflix, YouTube, and Twitch. Hulu, Disney Plus, and other subscription-based services are also available in some countries.

Tesla Theater is a great way to pass the time while charging on a long trip or while waiting for someone.

Music Streaming

There is also a variety of music streaming services available that you could use to listen to music while driving. They allow you to play any song through the use of playlists, searching, or even using your voice.

Tesla currently offers TuneIn, Slacker, Spotify, and TIDAL. FM radio is also available and the Model S and Model X also have SiriusXM.

Karaoke

Tesla's Caraoke feature
Tesla's Caraoke feature

There is a Tesla version of karaoke called Tesla Caraoke. You'll be able to play and sing some of the most popular karaoke songs right in your car. With Caraoke, song lyrics will appear directly on the screen without interfering with the critical information the driver needs to drive safely. In addition, song lyrics can be displayed either with or without any vocals. Unfortunately, it does not have a microphone or the ability to record your voice.

Games

There are many games built into a Tesla. They include games like Super Breakout, Cuphead, Sonic the Hedgehog, 2048, Fallout Shelter, and many more. Tesla even supports connecting a controller to the car to play some of the games.

Romance Mode

Teslas feature several easter eggs. One of them is Romance Mode; and while uou can't roast marshmallows by an open fire in your car, you can still cozy up with your loved ones by this virtual fireplace. While in Park, access Romance Mode from your Toybox and queue up the music.

Santa Mode

Tesla's Santa Mode can be entertaining during the holidays
Tesla's Santa Mode can be entertaining during the holidays

Santa Mode puts you in the Christmas spirit by transforming your on-screen visualizations into Christmas-inspired variants. Your vehicle transforms into Santa's sleigh, other cars become reindeer, and pedestrians become elves. There are a lot of little details added that make this one of the best Tesla easter eggs.

Car Wash Mode

Tesla's Car Wash Mode gives the status of several features
Tesla's Car Wash Mode gives the status of several features

Tesla has a Car Wash Mode that's in the service menu that makes taking your car to an automatic car wash easy. When this is activated, all the windows are closed, the charging port is locked, and the automatic windshield wipers, sentry mode alerts, walk-away door locks, and parking sensors are disabled.

Dog Mode

Tesla's Dog Mode maintains the cabin temperature while you're gone
Tesla's Dog Mode maintains the cabin temperature while you're gone

Tesla's Dog Mode keeps the car's air conditioner or heater on when the owner leaves their pet in the car.

This feature can be accessed through the car's climate control. Then, select "Dog" on the far-right side of the "Keep Climate On" settings by selecting the fan icon at the bottom of the 15-inch screen. As soon as you exit your Tesla, a message appears that states: "Don't worry! The heater [or air conditioner] is on, and it's XX degrees." The temperature stays where you set it for as long as you are away from the car, which is one of the benefits of having a giant battery onboard.

When the battery of the Tesla goes below 20 percent, and the owner is gone for an extended period, a push notification is sent to the owner's phone.

There is also a Camp Mode that keeps the main display on, USB ports powered and the climate on.

Valet Mode

With Valet Mode is activated, Tesla's operating system restricts the vehicle's functionality. The car's maximum speed is also limited to 70 mph, and its acceleration is reduced. Autopilot is also disabled while Valet Mode is activated.

However, that isn't all, as Valet Mode also locks the glove compartment and front trunk automatically. It also blocks certain kinds of personal information from being displayed on Tesla's display screen. For example, the "places" function is disabled, so the car owner's home address, contact information, and scheduled meetings will not appear on the screen.

Furthermore, while Valet Mode is engaged, Tesla's navigation function, Homelink access, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth settings are also disabled.

Tesla Phone App

The Tesla app is very well designed and has some great features. For example, you can sync your phone to the Tesla, allowing the phone to become your car key. The car will detect the phone and automatically unlock the doors as you approach the car. As you walk away from the vehicle, it will also lock all the doors.

Another great feature of the app is turning on the air-conditioner, so the car is nice and cool when you get into it. Those who live in cold or hot climates will know what a great feature this is.

Additionally, you can also view your vehicle's live camera feeds (not available in all countries) via the app, check on your car's location, contact Tesla service, install software updates, and much more.

Tesla is updating its 'Automatic Window Reversal System' to fix issue

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla notified the NHTSA that it will update its automatic widnow system
Tesla notified the NHTSA that it will update its automatic widnow system

Tesla will soon send an over-the-air update to address the Automatic Window Reversal System. During product testing in mid-August, the company's technicians detected the system varied in response to obstructions in the window path. After more testing, Tesla concluded that it would notify the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) of a voluntary recall to address the issue.

The majority of Tesla's recalls are much different than traditional automotive recalls. Tesla owners don't have to schedule an appointment and bring the vehicle to a service department. Instead, the company will update nearly 1.1 million Teslas using an over-the-air update. However, several news organizations picked up the recall, some linking it to the lower stock price when the market closed. Elon Musk tweeted: The terminology is outdated & inaccurate. This is a tiny over-the-air software update. To the best of our knowledge, there have been no injuries.

The recall and Musk's tweet generated a lot of discussions on social media and in comments below articles on news websites. What Tesla is doing is not a recall in traditional terms. However, it is the only course of action available to the company in the current system to notify the government and owners of required changes.

With more of the automotive industry following Tesla's lead, the recall term will be misleading as most fixes to electric vehicles should be conducted through updates, not physically bringing the car to a service center to change parts. A more fitting term that should replace recall in this new EV world should be: update. The headlines would read, Tesla is Updating its Automatic Window Reversal System. That is much more accurate to what is happening. It should surprise no one that Tesla does not fit the archaic terminology used by the industry.

In a report filed with the NHTSA, Tesla states that it "is not aware of any warranty claims, field reports, crashed, injuries or deaths related to this condition." However, starting September 13, the company started updating vehicles' firmware in pre-delivery and one production line. This change came one day after notifying the federal authorities about the voluntary recall. The over-the-air update will go to Model Xs, and Model Ss built between 2021 and 2022; Model Ys produced from 2020 to 2022 and Model 3s dating back to when the car first hit the market in 2017.

Tesla update 2022.36 features new Energy App, Supercharger popular times

By Nuno Cristovao
New Energy app
New Energy app
Not a Tesla App

Tesla's next update will be update 2022.36 instead of 2022.32. Tesla's version naming is based on the year and the week number. So update 2022.36 would have been started around the 36th week of 2022.

Tesla traditionally releases an update every four weeks, but sometimes updates can take longer to develop, test, or fix bugs, causing the version number to fall behind the calendar.

Although it doesn't happen too often, Tesla has skipped update version numbers in the past.

Given that we're now in the 39th week of the year, Tesla has chosen to skip version 2022.32 and jump directly to 2022.36.

Update 2022.36 is right around the corner and we're now having our first look at the features included in this update.

New Language

Tesla is adding support for a new language bringing its total to well beyond 20 now. Update 2022.36 introduces Lithuanian as a supported language for the vehicle's on-screen controls.

More Notifications

About two years ago Tesla added the ability to notify you via your mobile phone if the car doors, trunk or windows were left open.

With 2022.32 they're adding on to this feature and will now notify you if the car has been left unlocked.

If you have the walk-away lock feature turned on your vehicle automatically locks when you walk away if you're using a phone key or key fob. You also have the option to exclude locking when at home.

Supercharger Details

When tapping on a Supercharger icon on the vehicle's navigation system will reveal a pop-up that displays additional information about that Supercharger location.

Tesla already shows you the number of stalls available, the price and available amenities at the location. 

With 2022.36 Tesla has redesigned the pop-up and will display historical usage for each Supercharger location.

It appears that Tesla will display typical usage for the location by providing an hourly analysis of how busy the Supercharger typically is at certain times of the day.

This feature should let us easily view the busiest times at Superchargers, letting us plan our charging stops a little better.

New Energy Graph

The biggest feature of 2022.36 is by far a new energy graph.

Tesla has made tremendous improvements around its energy predictions in the last few updates and although they haven't changed the UI of the energy graph, it has resulted in much more accurate predictions that now take wind, humidity, the number of occupants, phone charging and more into account when predicting energy usage.

With 2022.36 Tesla delivers a brand new energy app that shows much more detail on how the vehicle is using energy.

The new Model S and Model X haven't had the energy graph available and now this may explain why. Tesla has likely been working on this new energy graph for a while and didn't want to spend time adapting the old app to fit the new vehicles. The new vehicles may finally receive an energy app with this update.

The new energy graph will not only let you view the energy the vehicle is using while driving but also the amount of energy that was used while the vehicle was parked.

Whether the vehicle is driving or parked, you'll now be able to see a complete breakdown of all the different systems in the vehicle and how much energy they've used. Unfortunately, Tesla doesn't display energy used in kW, but in percentage.

The vehicle will also provide suggestions on how to improve efficiency.

At the top of the energy graph where you normally have Consumption and Trip, you'll now have a new option called Park which displays energy used while parked.

The consumption screen looks similar to the way it did before. It displays the vehicle's energy usage on a graph over a chosen distance.

However, the Park and Trip views have been completely revamped.

On the Park screen, the vehicle will display various vehicle components and their energy usage. For example, the vehicle will break down its energy usage over several categories including the vehicle's screen, vehicle pre-conditioning, cabin overheat protection, Sentry Mode and mobile app usage and more.

Next to each category, the vehicle will display the percentage of the energy used for the feature and how it compares to the rest of the fleet. This could be helpful to let you know whether the amount of energy used for that feature is in line with expectations.

You'll also be able to change the timeframe since the last departure or other periods.

Similar to the Park screen, the new Trip screen also displays a breakdown of energy used across different vehicle systems, although it also adds a graph at the top, similar to what's available in the vehicle today.

The graph will automatically change colors, not based on the battery state of charge, but dependent on whether the vehicle used more or less energy in the given segment of the route when compared to its predictions.

Underneath the graph, Tesla will display the amount of energy used for driving, climate, battery conditioning, altitude, and other systems.

In addition to displaying the percent of the energy used for each system, Tesla will also compare your usage to its prediction and the percentage difference above or below the prediction.

There could be other features in the 2022.36 update that aren't mentioned here and we'll have to wait a little longer to see whether there are any additional features.

The biggest update in this release appears to be the new energy app and many owners will be thrilled with its release.

We may start seeing 2022.36 going out to the public in the next couple of weeks. You can also view the release notes for 2022.36.

Upcoming Release

View the release notes for the upcoming version 2022.36.

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

Tesla News

Upcoming Release

View the release notes for the upcoming version 2022.36.

Confirmed by Elon

Take a look at features that Elon Musk has said will be coming soon.

Subscribe

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter.