In true into-the-future style, Tesla has released an over-the-air update for their Model S firmware, Software V6.0. This means that you can actually update the features on your car wirelessly. You don’t even have to take it to your service center! With the update, new features can “further personalize the Model S ownership experience and help make the car smarter about owners’ individual preferences.”
OTA updates for the Model S have been around since 2012, but it still continues to surprise us. The latest update introduces traffic-based navigation and commute advice, provides an in-car view of daily schedules, enables location-based air suspension settings, and allows owners to name their Model S and start it remotely using their mobile phone. This makes the four wheeled vehicle I drive seem like the Flintstones car.
Some of the other new features include,
Traffic-Based Navigation (BETA)
The Model S navigation system will be a lot smarter. Navigation will now provide route suggestions based on real-time traffic and calculate estimated travel times accordingly. It will also update dynamically as traffic conditions change throughout your trip. This feature will also take into account traffic data shared by other Tesla vehicles on the road.
Navigation isn’t particularly useful when commuting between home and work because most of us usually know the way. But if traffic has an effect on a typical route, it’s helpful to know in advance. Now, Model S will monitor traffic before you even start your weekday commute and alert you with a pop-up message on the 17-inch touchscreen when a faster route is available.
Model S will synch with your smartphone to bring you a large in-car view of your daily schedule. If you’ve already set locations for particular events, you don’t have to worry about re-entering the details into your car’s navigation system. Instead, you can just tap on the event in your calendar to bring up route directions.
You will have the ability to start your Model S using only your smartphone. This function, which is particularly useful if you forget your key fob, will be accessible through the Tesla mobile app and requires you to input your password for each use.
Location-Based Air Suspension
If you regularly drive on roads or driveways that require higher than normal clearance, your Model S will remember where you previously selected high ride heights and automatically adjust the air suspension at those locations. This feature will be especially handy for people who have steep driveways. (Model S must be equipped with air suspension for this function to work.)
Name Your Car
You can now make your Model S nickname official. The car’s name will appear in the Tesla mobile app and in the About Your Tesla section on the touchscreen.
Power Management Options
A new power management option will put Model S into energy saving mode at night to help maximize available energy. There’ll also be an option that allows the Tesla mobile app to always connect immediately to the car, while still saving power.
This software update represents Tesla’s commitment to improving Model S for customers even long after it has left the assembly line. With each update, Model S becomes more attuned and responsive to its owner’s needs without requiring excessive user input. We will continuously fine-tune the software and work on new features in response to customer feedback.