SUGGESTION: Audio Warning when shifting into Reverse

SUGGESTION: Audio Warning when shifting into Reverse

I recently had to stop on an upward incline, and somehow accidentally shifted my Model S into reverse. (Not sure how I did that, maybe I hit the lever while trying to adjust the vent behind it.) In any event, when I depressed the accelerator pedal to start upward again, I shot backward (downhill) very rapidly. I immediately hit the brake, but it was very fortunate no one was behind me.

I notice that my Prius sounds an audio warning tone inside the vehicle anytime the shifter is set to reverse. I'd sure like to have that feature on my Tesla! Perhaps it could be an option on the control panel screen.

EVRider | September 1, 2016

Didn't you notice the rear camera coming on?

PBEndo | September 2, 2016

I would like an audible alert, as long as it is subtle. With the electronic gear (direction?) shifter and electric motor there is no audible or physical feedback regarding shifting directions. More than once I have tapped the stalk too lightly and nothing shifted. In a typical automatic transimission ICE, the sound and slight motion of the car as the new gear is engaged makes it pretty obvious.

@Roof - if you have the rear camera view "always on", the display doesn't change.

UnshodBob | September 2, 2016

Some less annoying version of the beep-beep-beep that big trucks use would alert pedestrians, too. The car silently energizes, and silently begins to move, and it surprises people. I once used summon to pull my car out of a tight parking space, and a person nearby said, "Wow! I didn't even hear it start up!" People expect that "starter" sound before a car can move. Of course, they were also surprised that there didn't need to be a driver inside the car! :)

EVRider | September 2, 2016

@PBEndo: I'm betting that most people (including the OP) don't keep their backup camera on all the time. I know some do, but for the majority who don't, I would think most would notice the camera coming on.

@UnshodBob: The pedestrian alert is a good idea, but we would need it for moving forward too. Or maybe a more gentle horn for people in the roadway who don't hear you approaching (happens a lot in my gated community).

kevin | September 2, 2016

If anything, a Tesla needs an outside warning sound that it is moving in reverse, like those commercial vehicles. Since there is no engine noise or puff of exhaust, someone behind the car gets no warning. (I found the reverse beeping in a Prius annoying.)

UnshodBob | September 2, 2016

I'd go for the Jetson's "flivver" sound for the pedestrian warning. Perfect! I was promised a flying car that transforms into a briefcase when I was a kid, and that sound when in drive or reverse, and traveling less than 18 mph or so, would be awesome. I just listened to it again on the web and it's great. :)

johndoe | September 2, 2016

Tesla can change the dash so you unambiguously know you are in reverse.
I believe the same should apply to Autopilot being engaged.

David N | September 2, 2016

Good suggestions

Silver2K | September 4, 2016


Jeff Hudson | September 4, 2016
Dithermaster | September 5, 2016

PLEASE don't implement this. We had a Prius. The annoying beep was the first thing I learned how to turn off (and every Prius owner who rode with us asked how to do it too).

codyb12889 | September 5, 2016

It seems that a quick few beeps to get your attention and a flashing icon on the gauge cluster is something that would be possible via an OTA update and would be a good feature.

An outside reverse warning of some sort would be great as well but that would likely require hardware additions.

UnshodBob | September 5, 2016

Ok. Rethinking. I'm not sure I'd be happy with a noise I could hear in the cabin when moving forward or backward under 18 mph. Even the Jetson's flivver sound would get old pretty quick. Especially in stop-n-go traffic on the freeway. So I don't want it to be automatically activated. I guess programming a button on the big screen to initiate it while driving slowly in a parking lot would be acceptable. External only sound is ok, but don't make it annoying for the driver or passengers! And it should not be loud enough to be heard inside the car with the windows up.

UnshodBob | September 5, 2016

Previous comment was about pedestrian warning. A reverse notice for the Tesla driver that sounds like the Jetson's car for a second or two would be ok. Best to make it a choice from several sounds.

holidayday | September 12, 2016

Having the center console turn a red hue to indicate reverse (or another significant change) might be a way to alert the driver that Reverse has been chosen.

dsvick | September 12, 2016

Is it easier to shift a Tesla into reverse than an ICE car? I realize it would certainly be more noticeable with the mechanical systems of an ICE, but is shifting any less of an intentional process?

Mike83 | September 12, 2016

Please. no. Having driven a quiet Prius when on electric only for 200,000 miles and 15 years there is no need for beeping.

Peter | September 9, 2019

Today I reversed into a car. Luckily minimal damage but because I was looking out the front window I didn’t see that the camera was on.

I’d suggest that the car simply say’s ‘reverse’ just the once when you click it into reverse. And this also should be an option that you can turn off. I don’t see how that would be annoying, people seem fine putting up with all the beeps the car already makes.

jimglas | September 9, 2019

you put your car in reverse and ran into a car?
too bad you were not in a (name on request), that would never have happened
I blame Elon!

EVRider | September 9, 2019

@Peter: Which other cars do that? Exactly.

rxlawdude | September 9, 2019

The Prius has an audio alert when in reverse. Sounds like the backup alarms on trucks, but only audible inside the cabin.

andy.connor.e | September 11, 2019

I wasnt paying attention while operating my vehicle. Its the vehicles fault for not telling me.