Tesla Model S And Model X Get Brilliant New Feature

Technology / 16 Comments

Finally, something useful.

Whether you're a fan of Tesla or not, you can't deny it changed the automotive industry forever. And one of the key ingredients of its dominance is over-the-air updates. But more on that later.

The Model S celebrates its tenth birthday this year, and along with the many accolades it has (rightfully) received, we're willing to concede that there hasn't been a car that challenged the automotive status quo this much since the Ford Model T. Tesla followed it up with the equally brilliant Model X in 2015.

We included the Model S and Model X launch dates because Tesla critics tend to point at the lack of replacement models as a sign that Tesla is falling behind the times. To a certain degree, we agree with this argument. Looking at the average lifespan of a vehicle, both cars should have been replaced by now.

But since when has Tesla done things the usual way? Its CEO is a flamethrower building, Twitter buying, moving-to-Mars-as-soon-as-he-can kinda guy.


Back to over-the-air updates. What has become an industry-standard was made famous by Tesla. It meant the manufacturer could update the car overnight, and you'd wake up with a faster vehicle with brand-new features and an increase in range.

Some of Tesla's inventions have been less successful. The Feds are currently investigating Full Self-Driving, and various people have been killed by Autopilot. Not to mention the yoke steering wheel, which is just downright stupid.

The same can't be said of the latest update to the Model S and Model X, which is downright brilliant. It allows the enormous 17-inch touchscreen to remain in place or tilt toward the driver or passenger.

2017-2021 Tesla Model S Driving Back View Tesla 2017-2021 Tesla Model S Driving Front Angle Tesla Tesla Tesla
2017-2021 Tesla Model S Driving Back View
2017-2021 Tesla Model S Driving Front Angle

The main question on the forum that found this new feature is why? Well, apart from doing away with potential glare, it's more ergonomically pleasing. Having a screen angled toward the driver is much safer and cuts the time their eyes aren't on the road.

And if you happen to have somebody riding shotgun, you can tilt the screen their way so they can handle the entertainment.

There seems to be some confusion about whether this will be a simple over-the-air update. It looks like all cars with the horizontally-mounted screen are equipped with the mechanism that allows them to tilt, but not necessarily the motors needed to make them move.

Since Tesla no longer has a PR department, we can't find out. If we had to guess, there's a good chance every Model S and X manufactured from April comes standard with both the mechanism and the motors.

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2017-2021 Tesla Model S Driving Back View 2017-2021 Tesla Model S Driving Front Angle

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