This is What Part 2 Will Be

This is What Part 2 Will Be

Part 1 was showing everyone what the car looked like and the powertrain, this was a very car-centric reveal. Part 2 is going to be about the things that weren't discussed and that's namely the Autonomous capability and all the other electronic related stuff. Think part 2 as more of an iPhone event.

Elon basically gave away one of the secrets to part 2 which is there will be a futuristic steering system, most likely a steering wheel with a flexible OLED touch display. That's why there was nothing to been see on the dash. HUD is old, not interactive and not suitable for the environment of a car, let alone with that much glass. And lets be very clear, a car that is for the masses is not taking out the steering wheel on the first try. Full Autonomous driving features will ramp up slowly for both safety and legal issues, so in the meantime don't expect any car coming out in the next 1-2 years to have no steering wheel. The robotic memorized line from all the Tesla employees during the event about the 15-inch replacing the dash screen "Giving more access to the passenger.." was an obvious smoke screen to avoid talking about the real plans.

You can bet the Tesla OS is going through a major overhaul with a bunch of new integrated features. Autonomous driving alone requires a lot more features and to be a lot more integrated. It will most likely introduce the ability to enter destinations and work with the map. The steering wheel touch display will probably be way more integrated then the dash display ever was. It will probably be able to switch into different modes like from navigation to media mode and probably allow some customization's. Depending on the size of the steering wheel touch display there may be either very few physical steering wheel controls to zero. Meaning everything from turning signals to wipers could be controlled from the interface if they choose to go that way. This also means that the display will have some sort of image stabilization relative to the movement of the steering wheel. Since this is a vehicle for the masses we can expect there's going to be an integration of new services through partnerships that will also show up on the updated OS. This will allow Tesla to make more money on the Model 3 through value added services.

There might be some other stuff but I expect this to be basically what we will be looking at when Part 2 comes around.

**I have no insider info and this is speculatory**

inconel | 7 avril 2016

HUD I hope. Not steering wheel display.

jordanrichard | 7 avril 2016

And where exactly on the steering wheel do you picture these screens being placed, on the spokes?

deesugar | 7 avril 2016

The screen will probably be the spoke or spokes. It could even maintain a constant image position when turning the wheel. So when the wheel starts turning the screen stays level and a constant image is displayed just as on the dash.

V.travis | 7 avril 2016

@jordan yes... This would mean that any display in the SW would have to dynamically turn relative to the SW's position. I really doubt we will see a SW mounted display. I also think that a HUD is unlikely... I think they are too unreliable in bright conditions.. Although, I will admit I don't have another viable option for what is 'spaceship' like design...

Chunky Jr. | 7 avril 2016

I think part 2 will be where we learn more about specs, configurations, and the stuff they want to surprise us with.

Captain_Zap | 7 avril 2016

A display on a steering wheel would be hard on the eyes. Too close.

jordanrichard | 7 avril 2016

Well, I can see the present thumb wheels being replaced with touch screens, but not for reading any info. Too small and definitely would require you to take your eyes off the road too long to read.

fyun89 | 7 avril 2016

I really wish they would include ventilated seats.. Better for energy saving and comfort..

henry | 7 avril 2016

I doubt they would put a large screen on the steering wheel. But I do remember the original Model X had smaller screens by the thumbs like @jordanrichard mentioned

deesugar | 7 avril 2016

There is no way Elon would put some little thumb screens on and call that a spaceship. That's why you have to think bigger, the way Elon does.

deesugar | 7 avril 2016

If you think that's too close I recommend you don't ever google about VR :)

Sparky | 7 avril 2016

I suspect that the DOT will require full steering control in the event of a total power failure at speed, therefore a steering wheel is almost a certainty. That's why your Father's (or Grampa's) old Chrysler Newport had a large diameter steering wheel despite the fact that you could steer it with your pinky. If the engine quit the reversion to "armstrong steering" was quite dramatic.

So an HD flexible display within the steering wheel sounds like a good guess, and if it's stabilized and displayed at infinity it would be a bit like a spaceship wouldn't it?

I just hope that they make the dashboard behind the steering wheel look a little more interesting than a bank teller's countertop, but, like everyone else, I'll just to wait and see.

henry | 7 avril 2016

@deesugar I didn't say that was the space ship solution Elon was talking about. Just pointing out that the Model X early prototypes had the thumb screens. Not sure why they didn't make it to the production car but keep in mind that all these ideas have to pass regulations to make it to production.

deesugar | 7 avril 2016

It probably didn't make it because it evolved into something bigger, like what we'll see on the Model 3 and they didn't have time to get it done for the Model X.

hcwhy | 7 avril 2016

If the steering is "drive by wire" (actuated by computer feed rather than by mechanics) there are options other than a traditional steering wheel . Perhaps side mounted joysticks? These are on modern aircraft and pilots find them to be user friendly. The joysticks open up the cabin tremendously. Could this be the "feel of a space ship" Elon was talking about? Surely mind reading hardware couldn't happen just yet...could it?

AlMc | 7 avril 2016

Part deux: Retractable steering wheel, HUD and hardware allowing for the capability of AD, when it becomes 'legal'

AND: Choice of sedan or CUV on the same platform.

deesugar | 7 avril 2016

You have both local and national laws and regulations that dictate car controls. You can't reverse the brake pedal for the gas and you can't do a lot of other things. Steering wheel design is also regulated and things like having a minimum outside diameter of 13 inches have to be adhered to.

JeffreyR | 7 avril 2016

Mollom is blocking my photo example. I'll add a little more text to see if that helps.
I was thinking of @henry's post above or something like this:

Mollom blocked it. You'll have to search for "touch screen steering wheel" yourself.

But someone pointed out when I mentioned this solution before that it would be hard to have a screen in the center of the steering wheel and an airbag too. The airbag certainly could not burst out from behind the screen. Not sure how you solve that problem. I find it difficult to use controls on the steering wheel spokes. My favorite cruise control "control" is the much derided MB stalk. But, then again, mine is older and much simpler (and I am used to it).

Supposedly RHD will be very simple to do w/ the design concept Tesla is building. Since it's drive-by-wire technology I can see how that might be possible. Moving the "dash" screen to the steering wheel, a HUD, or eliminating entirely would definitely help w/ that.

dsvick | 7 avril 2016

I'd rather have to look at the large display on the side than a smaller one on the steering wheel, less of a shift in perspective and less focusing change required.

deesugar | 7 avril 2016

It's a flexible screen, so both the horn and airbag will not effect it.

dsvick | 7 avril 2016

It's a flexible screen, so both the horn and airbag will not effect it
How can an airbag bursting through it not affect it - I don't care how flexible it is.

maclean525 | 7 avril 2016

Think MUCH bigger. Think full-screen windshield HUD.

deesugar | 7 avril 2016

Airbags burst through seams. I can visualize lots of ways you could make it work. There really isn't any kind of design complication with it. OLED screen or screens in general use very small thin flexible connectors. The rest is attached however you want.

Tropopause | 7 avril 2016

Don't forget about low-cost production goal. Space ships are a tad pricey.

mos6507 | 7 avril 2016

Something like the Bolt is the classic lazy approach to cost-cutting. Model 3 is finding a way to cram as much gee-whiz into $35K as possible.

hcwhy | 8 avril 2016


There are already exceptions to the break and accelerator regulations.... hand controls for handicapped vehicles...... so getting approval for alternate design isn't out of the question.

hcwhy | 8 avril 2016

brake...not break geez

zyxser | 8 avril 2016

And the airbags from the wheel where? Behind the sheel-touchscreen? I also thought that initially but I can't see it with the airbags there..!

deesugar | 8 avril 2016

I think you already answered your own question when you acknowledged that those are exceptions and not the rule. You can't just modify your car controls because you want to, it would both be extremely dangerous and illegal. If you move the brake and gas to hand controls imagine what would happen in an emergency where you need to brake suddenly? Your instinct would be to use your feet. Handicap people need doctors approval and have to get an Adapted Driver’s License in order to drive a modified car, which also includes special training.

cpmarino | 8 avril 2016

The center section of the wheel would house the horn and the airbag, and then mounted to the column itself would be a screen that would be visible through the open section between the top rim of the steering wheel and the horn/airbag housing. Since it is attached to the column, it wouldn't move when the wheel was turned. Only way it would work. BUT I HATE THE IDEA. No, I don't want that. Again, I sound repetitive because there are many threads with similar topics, but what in the hell do we really need to see other than the speed of the vehicle?

Turn signals integrated into the a-pillars and/or the mirrors directly, so no need for that. No need for a tach. No need for a gas gauge. No need for a map (though the Audi Virtual Cockpit is very cool), because we can look at the big screen if necessary, no need for music display, energy display ... all those things are things that Tesla tried to fill a vast space with, and none of them are necessary. I don't ever look at my instrument cluster, ever, for any reason other than speed, and even that I hardly ever do.

There should be a hud, with choices of simple display, complex display, map display, whatever. But honestly I'm not even sure that is needed. How hard is it to look at the center screen every once in a while to see my speed or whatever? If Autopilot does what it is supposed to, why do I need to see graphics of other cars ... can't I just see them out my big giant windshield?

I think we're all looking at this from the context of what is out there now, rather than if we were to design a car from scratch, what would the controls look like?

My guess also is that the steering wheel will be open top, like a plane ... basically two joysticks that rotate like a regular steering wheel, but with no rim at the top.

cpmarino | 8 avril 2016

Oh, and another thing ... if someone can finally make a voice response system that would actually work, that would ever further simply things and you'd hardly ever need to look at the big screen either.

hcwhy | 8 avril 2016


I'm sure something non standard could be worked out. Please stop putting up barriers.

finman100 | 8 avril 2016

it would be nice to know remaining charge. Both in miles remaining AND kWh remaining.

alnrench2 | 8 avril 2016

The possibilities.....
I imagine the outer circular ring, the wheel, will be independent from a circular hub that will be fixed. The "wheel" would be "drive by wire" not linked physically to a steering shaft, but sending steering commands to the power steering system, like a modern commercial aircraft with sides stick controls, and an instrument cluster , or OLED, which could display a ton of info.
I would suspect much of it, and the larger 15 screen to be voice commanded.
Will we also get something like virtual 3D or holographic ?......, I hope so, I want an M3 spaceship !

deesugar | 8 avril 2016

I'm not putting up barriers the Government and common sense are, I'm just pointing out the extreme danger and illegality of doing something like that.

The very fist steering system on a car was actually stick. It was called a tiller and based on how boats at the time were operated. Boats again led the way when they moved to using a wheel and cars followed. They never went back to stick because of the control, precision and feedback that the wheel afforded them.

You brought up Jet fighters because they use stick but most other aircraft they may be protecting like bombers, cargo and tanker aircraft use yokes which is more like a steering wheel. There are specific reasons why cars have steering wheels and fighters don't. Fighter pilots have different needs and have to manage important aircraft systems without removing their hands from the flight controls. It's a philosophy called HOTAS (hands-on throttle and stick). Most other types of aircraft including commercial don't use this because they have different needs.

dd.micsol | 8 avril 2016

Will it be a fighter jet or a millennium falcon? Fighter jets had joysticks where the falcon didn't-it was more like a commercial airliner-a wheel like knight rider-sort of. I still like the idea of a model S HUD on the lower part of the windshield. Meaning all the info from the S dashboard is put into the HUD. During the daytime it will need to be ultra bright to be seen or a special windshield material will be needed (highly reflective). How long will the HUD bulb work is another question. Remember Johnny Cab in Total Recall-that was joystick - LOL.

hcwhy | 8 avril 2016


You're not a whole lot of fun to dream with.

deesugar | 8 avril 2016

I think we know what the Model 3 steering wheel will look like. I can't post images for some reason but if someone else would like to I prepared a close up image of it.

Go to tinyurl dot com/gn649nc

Red Sage ca us | 8 avril 2016

Some have called for paddles to mimic driving in a manner familiar to those who had adapted to sequential shift automatic transmission systems. They would like those paddles to control the amount of Regen dynamically using hand controls while driving. It is a feature that was present on the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Electric Drive, and on the Cadillac ELR. Personally, I think the notion is hogwash and that it would be better to stick to one-foot driving as already perfected with the Model S.