Air Suspension Stories March 25, 2016

Your favorite Tesla hacker Jason Hughes is still tinkering with his car after the recent “P100D” revelation and now claims that he managed to find a hidden air suspension setting to make the Model S even closer to the ground.

Hughes posted the picture of his Model S seen above with the new lower air suspension setting and shared a video of the car going from the “low” to the new “very low” – video embedded below. expand full story

Air Suspension Stories September 19, 2014

Although it has already leaked more than a few times, here is the official Blog post.  Absent are some of the pre-announced features like music improvements:

Today, we’re announcing details about new software being delivered to Model S customers through an over-the-air update. The new features further personalize the Model S ownership experience and help make the car smarter about owners’ individual preferences. This is the latest in a series of software updates issued since we launched Model S in 2012, enabling new features such as hill start assist, smart suspension controls, and energy saving sleep mode.

The Software v6.0 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.

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.

Commute Advice 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.

Calendar (BETA) 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.

Remote Start 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.

Air Suspension Stories November 19, 2013

Tesla CEO Elon Musk takes to the Blog to set record straight on fires with 3-step plan

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As reported this weekend, Tesla has announced that it has removed the Air Suspension lowering as part of a three step plan to deal with the media attention. The whole Blog post is worth a read but here are the important bits:

First, we have rolled out an over-the-air update to the air suspension that will result in greater ground clearance at highway speeds. To be clear, this is about reducing the chances of underbody impact damage, not improving safety. The theoretical probability of a fire injury is already vanishingly small and the actual number to date is zero. Another software update expected in January will give the driver direct control of the air suspension ride height transitions.

Second, we have requested that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conduct a full investigation as soon as possible into the fire incidents. While we think it is highly unlikely, if something is discovered that would result in a material improvement in occupant fire safety, we will immediately apply that change to new cars and offer it as a free retrofit to all existing cars. Given that the incidence of fires in the Model S is far lower than combustion cars and that there have been no resulting injuries, this did not at first seem like a good use of NHTSA’s time compared to the hundreds of gasoline fire deaths per year that warrant their attention. However, there is a larger issue at stake: if a false perception about the safety of electric cars is allowed to linger, it will delay the advent of sustainable transport and increase the risk of global climate change, with potentially disastrous consequences worldwide. That cannot be allowed to happen.

Third, to reinforce how strongly we feel about the low risk of fire in our cars, we will be amending our warranty policy to cover damage due to a fire, even if due to driver error. Unless a Model S owner actively tries to destroy the car, they are covered. Our goal here is to eliminate any concern about the cost of such an event and ensure that over time the Model S has the lowest insurance cost of any car at our price point. Either our belief in the safety of our car is correct and this is a minor cost or we are wrong, in which case the right thing is for Tesla to bear the cost rather than the car buyer.

TSLA shares are again down in morning pre-market trading.

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