What other features would you want on an S?

What other features would you want on an S?

Looking at the nice photo of the full glass roof (go to, click on "Model S", click on "Learn More ->" just above and to the right of "300 Miles per charge") made me wonder as others have: will it be too hot? Can you see the information on the touchscreen?

How will you "close" the view above?
Is switchable glass possible for automotive and curved glass applications? (LCD built in to the glass makes it electrically controllable to be clear vs. "frosted" (translucent) or "mirror" (opaque).

If it's possible, there would be no significant weight or volume difference from standard glass. Instant control from the dash. (Fresh air is done the old fashioned way...)

That's (1) for me.
While I'm brainstorming (fantasizing?), someday I'd like to see some other electronic features:
(2) How does Google Maps get their traffic information? Internet connected cars could easily periodically report their position and average speed for wherever they are, thus enabling intelligent re-routing of other connected cars around traffic, whatever the cause.

(3) I'm used to backup cameras. What I'd really like is a simulated view of my car seen from above, showing all the cars nearby. This might be done with front, back and side cameras and real-time stitching, or with ultrasonic or laser scanning around the car. The view would show on a display, preferably one that can be seen easily while driving. No need to look over your shoulder as you're about to cut someone off with a lane change when you already know they're there. Not a replacement for good driving, but nice.

(4) Skype application in the car. Mobile ISPs don't like it, but it would be nice.

(5) Social mode: detect other nearby cars with local connectivity (Bluetooth auto-pairing? Wireless access point from your car to others?) and talk to them over your Bluetooth mike and speakers! "Man, did you see that guy cut off the ambulance!" "Do you know any good restaurants around here?" "Do you know what's causing this traffic?" "How 'bout them Yankees?" :) "Nice day!" "I like the color of your Tesla S - wanna get a cup of coffee?" It would make driving more like walking with others in public - more personable. But you could just shut it off!

I'm sure many of you have ideas, too!

David70 | July 10, 2012


To me starting on the uphill is much less of a problem than with a manual transmission where you have to take your foot off the brake (or release the handbrake) while releasing the clutch and and applying the throttle. In the Model S: Left foot on the brake, right on the accelerator. Easy to release the brake and press on the accelerator at the same time.

pilotSteve | July 10, 2012

what do you believe the behavior of the Model-S is when BOTH the brake and accelerator are pressed together?

Several scenarios:
(a) hill start
(b) panic "stop" with foot mashing down both pedals (may not be physical possible)
(c) "unintended acceleration" prevention
(d) other stupid pet tricks performed by drivers.....

EdG | July 10, 2012

I'm going with (d) other stupid pet tricks. Final answer.

Timo | July 10, 2012

(e) rear wheels burn smoke and brakes, front wheels stay stationary. You'd do donuts.

Teoatawki | July 10, 2012

Remember the rear ending incident at the first test drive? That was caused by pressing on both pedals. Apparently after a few seconds the accelerator stops or reduces power to the wheels.

EdG | July 10, 2012

I'm sorry.. I don't understand. How did that cause the accident?

Volker.Berlin | July 10, 2012

In go carts, where your left foot routinely handles the brake and the right the accelerator, pushing both pedals at the same time kills the engine. That's a technical artifact, but it also makes sense. Why would or should you push both pedals simultaneously?

Please, Tesla, don't make us use our left foot for the brake to do a hill start! Never, outside the race track, should it be necessary or even recommended to use the left foot for the brake! You see where that ends? Right foot is for handling both pedals alternatively (and mutually exclusively), left foot is for the clutch (and the hand brake, in older Mercedes models, ironically, but I digress...). If there's no clutch that's fine, but you're not doing yourself or anybody a favor by training your drivers to use the left foot for the brake pedal... Yes, I'm German and I can get quite anal when it comes to driving. ;-)

Having that said, there is only one correct answer to the above question: (b) panic stop. Of course it's physically possible, the accelerator is drive-by-wire, anyway.

Volker.Berlin | July 10, 2012

Remember the rear ending incident at the first test drive? That was caused by pressing on both pedals. (Teoatawki)

That's bad programming of the accelerator pedal (see my opinion above), but that's also an impressive demonstration of the electric motor's torque. Have you ever tried running an ICE against the brakes? I did not try that with any super cars, but I can say for sure that in all nearly "normal" cars the brakes kill the engine before you even know it. I'm having a hard time imagining that the rear wheels actually burn the brakes in a Model S in this case. What a brutal force!

Brian H | July 10, 2012

Yes, seems incomprehensible that braking wouldn't cut motor power immediately. If you're braking, you want to/need to slow down, and revving the motor can't possibly help with that! Though it does bring to mind the question, what happens at 50 mph if you throw the car into Reverse and goose it? <8-0 !!

Timo: "July 10, 2012
If the car otherwise acts like stick drive and it doesn't have actual handbrake hill stops and getting back to move would be very hard thing to do. You would need to drive with both feets..."

Foots, or feet. Pick one. (But the first choice is wrong.) ;)

Brian H | July 10, 2012

I wonder if you can hold on a hill with light pressure on the goose pedal ...

Volker.Berlin | July 11, 2012

I'm actually surprised that there is no handbrake [...] It also makes toying with the car a bit more fun, which makes it disappointing (one minus to car design in my book). (Timo)

Timo, I suggest you erase that minus from your book: With rear wheel drive and plenty of torque instantly available, you don't need no handbrake to toy with the car. There is always enough torque available to make the wheels spin (you'll need to disable traction control for that, obviously), at least at those relatively low speeds when you'd otherwise use a handbrake to let the rear wheels slide sideways. That's why the Model S is an RWD vehicle! :-)

CIAOPEC | July 11, 2012

ability to provide a jump start to our ICE driving friends when their battery is dead, this would be great PR for Tesla and drivers of EV's

I really, really like the idea of electronically dimmable windows. I believe this feature is already available on the moonroof of certain Mercedes and on Boeing's new 787 aircraft. My guess is there are regulatory hurdles to jump through to allow side and back window dimming in automobiles... in reality the feature is no different than using sunshades which are commonly used nowadays.

Volker.Berlin | July 12, 2012

EVFNBOY, google "SLK Magic Sky Control".

bsimoes | July 12, 2012

I just checked out Volker's Mercedes site which shows the SmartGlass technology. It would seem that this would answer everybody's needs. Those who need to block heat and light could do so without the need of a shade, and those who want the light to shine through could have that as well. I'm hoping that this feature is added in the gen 2 cars, because I've been a little disappointed with the 98% light-blocking glass which now makes up the roof. I want the sunlight to stream through!
Also, I was wondering if anyone has heard any murmers about the wheels? It seems like many people like the look of the fan wheels, but don't want the 21" size. I was hoping that Tesla would compromise and offer the fan wheels with the 19". It seems like this would be easy enough to do. I, for one, would sure be interested.

EdG | July 12, 2012

Anyone know if (matching?) wheel locks will come with my overpriced wheels?

EdG | July 13, 2012

Zoned temperature control:
zone 1) passenger space
zone 2) heated/cooled seats (doesn't seem to be happening)
zone 3) custom insulated and refrigerated insert option in frunk which allows one to put groceries in the car and keep them cold while shopping.

Volker.Berlin | July 21, 2012

Update on the electronic hand brake/hill assist topic:

Then to top it off got to chat with George B for about 30 minutes on lots of topics. [...] I asked him about the hill hold mode (not present yet). He described how the engineers are currently prototyping this function with various combinations of motor hold and park brake. They are not yet satisfied with the smoothness upon release so are not going to release that until its perfected.
pilotSteve | July 21, 2012

So... the Model S will have hill assist, when you get it, but it does not have it yet.

MandL | July 24, 2012

It would be cool if Model S would log my regular routes and make suggestions for alternatives based on traffic info, time of day, etc. For instance, if I have the same origin (home) and destination (work) on a regular basis and use a couple of different routes Model S would learn over time and pop up a message when I get in the car in the morning like "If you're heading for work, you should probably take I95. There is an accident on I295 between MD100 and MD175." It could also suggest routes I don't usually take in a more informative way than just displaying several different colored lines on the map. For example "I have no record of your having taken Route 1 to work before. Based on available speed limit and traffic information it might be a faster option today. Would you like to try it?" 1. Map it 2. Maybe another time 3. don't recommend this again.

Obviously, this could be done by programming destinations into my address book and telling it to show routes, but it would be nice for it to just learn over time and use a more personal feedback method.

Also, when the nav system is compiling route options, I'm hoping there will be a most range-friendly option (lower speed limits, fewer miles) in addition to the usual fastest, most direct, no tolls, etc. options.

digitaltim | July 24, 2012

@MandL - I would just like to see the Waze app made available. It does everything you have listed.

davecolene0606 | July 24, 2012

Don't knowmifmit been mentioned before, but as a part of the electronics package turn by turn nav system,
The map database has to include terrain elevation and it should be interfaced with the vehicle range,calculation in order to,facilitate a more accurate "are you gonna make it?" answer when traveling.

docbfine | August 5, 2012

I took the red Perf Model S for a ride at the Mahwah NJ Amped Up Tour event. Loved it. The accessories that I would like to see added are things that most luxury cars and not so luxury cars already have and I understand that right now Tesla needs to get what it already has on its plate performing to the very highest standards and needs to focus on ramping up production. So here we go, this is my wish list: Adaptive cruise control, a hitch (for bike racks and such), heated steering wheel (it always seems to be freezing no matter how warm the cabin is), blind spot warning, backup collision warning radar(the camera is nice but gauging distance is difficult. Volvo has a nice system that combines both), and here's an idea that I haven't seen yet from any automaker; upon airbag activation a 911 alert is sent via the driver's smartphone Tesla app or the car's wifi. Just my 2 cents


toto_48313 | August 5, 2012

@ docbfine, the red car a Mahwah was NOT a performance. The silver and the white only were perf.

Brian H | August 5, 2012

I think a couple of the Siri-type Auto-AI apps will do that 911 call on impact/airbag deployment. I've seen reference to it somewhere, anyhow.

BYT | August 5, 2012

Doesn't the OnStar system on GM's do just what you described Brian H? Do they have OnStar in Canada?

Brian H | August 6, 2012

Yes, as a proprietary GM package/service.

EdG | August 6, 2012

I drove to my test drive in a Lexus. It was raining lightly.

When I started my test drive, I went to turn on the wipers, but did so the way I would in the Lexus, and, while going around a soft curve, managed to put the Model S in Neutral. As I started to slow, I pushed further down on the accelerator, but got no response - no new acceleration, no engine roar. It took me a few seconds to realize what I'd done.

I think it would be a good idea if there were some indication that gears were changed - and not just a change from "D" to "N" somewhere on the dash. Perhaps always, perhaps only while moving faster than a slow roll (whatever), could we get a really noticeable change somehow?

I was thinking one solution would be a big change in the background of the dash display. Perhaps a temporary flash of a new "gear" dependent color which then fades back to normal. In this way, the driver would know SOMETHING has happened that probably isn't part of the norm.

jerry3 | August 6, 2012


FWIW, The Prius beeps three times when you flub a shift like that. Shouldn't be hard to do, and I think audio notification is better than visual in this case.

holstein13 | April 30, 2013

I see we have hill assist in the discussion, but I didn't see it on the list. This would be my number one vote.

Otherwise, I'd modify u1 and h1 to include the Google's "send to car" feature. It works great with my old Mercedes. You simply right click on a marker and select send.

Here's my votes in no particular order: a, b, b1, c, d1, g1, u1, e6, e1, t2, y2, i1, 12, h4, e2, j3, v4

DouglasR | April 30, 2013

@paul - You have the wrong thread.

holstein13 | April 30, 2013

Oops, now where was that feature thread?

scoops | May 1, 2013

Not read this whole thread yet but apologies if this has already been mooted.

How about a user profile setting that allows you to just unlock the drivers door and only presents that handle when you approach the car. You could then use the key to unlock the rest of the car if you have passengers with you. Would be a good security feature. What's to stop someone opening the passenger side door in a dark parking lot as you walk up and enter the on the drivers side?