Cruise Control Alternative Needed

Cruise Control Alternative Needed

For us in the northern climates TACC is often disabled due to build up of snow on the forward looking radar. Furthermore, any type of cruise control is unsafe in adverse road conditions.

What would help is a alternative to Cruise Control that needs no sensors and only limits the top speed of the vehicle, similar to Mercedes Benz' speed limiter (LIM).

I think Tesla should add LIM mode to the cars so we can switch between TACC and LIM by pressing the button on the end of the Cruise Control stalk.

This was discussed a little in a previous thread although I feel the OP there was misunderstood.

What is LIM?
It is a function which prevents the car from going faster then the set limit when the accelerator is depressed normally.

What sensors does LIM need?
None. Speed limit information from the front camera should be used when available for conveniance.

How should LIM be activated?
The Limiter should be activated with the push button on the end of the cruise control stalk; it should toggle between Limiter and TACC/CC.

When is LIM better than TACC/CC?
When driving in snowy/icy/wet conditions.

Why not just use TACC?
The Idea is not to replace TACC but to have LIM as backup as TACC isn't always available, sometimes snow or dirt has accumulated on the forward facing radar disabling it.
Also TACC isn't always safe to use, authorities discourage cruise control use on slippery surfaces as reaction times get longer.

Why not normal sensorless cruise control when the sensors are blocked?
Normal CC is too similar to TACC and would increase the risk of rear-ending the car in front dramatically, LIM requires drivers to have their foot on the accelerator which is a different behavior from TACC and therefore minimizes the possibility of mixing them up.


I bring this up because I frequently have TACC get disabled on me when driving in sleet and then I catch myself going too fast, which as anyone who's driven a Tesla knows is very easy to do.
I believe adding LIM would be very easy for Tesla because it needs no sensors but I would like the same functionality regarding speed limit signs, i.e. that the car would show the speed limit if it can read the signs and the same offset would apply as to TACC.
Also I would like it if you could switch between modes with either engaged and the currently selected speed would apply to the other mode.

Who's with me?

Haggy | 26. januar 2016

Other cars I've owned have had the radar in better locations where snow can't build up. I'm surprised that Tesla never corrected this design flaw. The nose of the car never gets snow buildup. There's no reason for the radar to be in a recess that attracts buildup of anything. It's a bad design. They should fix it. In the mean time, you need to move to a warmer climate. Or wait for global warming to catch up with you.

Johann @IS | 26. januar 2016

Global warming doesn't do what it says in Iceland, it's been colder here for the last two years than usual.

The nose of the car does get snow buildup in Icelandic weather.

At least they could give us northern drivers this "work-around".

Johann @IS | 27. januar 2016

Any Norwegians, Canadians or northern state Americans on this forum that can relate to this issue?

Dwatson102 | 27. januar 2016

I've had the issue but using any cruise control on slick roads is a really bad idea.

TytanX | 27. januar 2016

I don't see what this "LIM" cruise would be beneficial over a regular cruise that just goes at a set speed. If the weather is that bad that it covers the sensors I agree that the conditions are most likely to harsh for any type of cruise.

Johann @IS | 27. januar 2016

Dwatson102 and TytanX, the LIM function has no effect on your driving except for helping you make sure you don't accidentally go too fast; it lets you keep your mind outside the vehicle in difficult conditions by removing the speeding factor.

My situation may not be familiar to you, I live in a country where 5 miles can mean the difference between slushy roads and sleet, and clear roads and sunshine. Stopping to clear the sensors isn't always an option in heavy traffic.

Don Schmidt | 27. januar 2016

Maybe Tesla's TCC has tradional CC (Sans radar). Maybe a call to a Service Center would be prudent? I had my 2014 Avalon for a year before I descovered it had both Radar CC and traditional CC. The thrill comes when I've selected traditional CC and the car in front me suddenly slows down! Time to get the foot on the stop pedal!!


Vancouver, WA

Johann @IS | 27. januar 2016

Don, that scares me. TACC and CC is too much alike. Either iteration of Cruise control can be dangerous on slippery surfaces while LIM isn't. LIM just makes sure you don't go faster than your set speed.

aarnold | 27. januar 2016

I am with the OP. There needs to be a way that we can just have regular cruise control. I love TACC, but would like the option to put it in regular cruise control. Maybe it is a hidden option that I don't know about.

Don Schmidt | 27. januar 2016

I drive with RCC most of the time, ~95% of the time. I've used it on icy streets. Many folks think if the wheels start to spin the car will go faster; nope, when the wheels spin at the set speed, that's it. CC used carefully can be a usable way to navigate snow and ice. It lessens wheel spin. If you think this is unsafe, I think Autopilot with hands off the wheel is unsafe and stressful.

Vancouver WA

Johann @IS | 27. januar 2016

aarnold, I've been very happy with regular Cruise Control on my earlier vehicles and I love TACC, the problem is that, unlike regular Cruise Control, TACC stops working when the sensors are dirty or clogged with snow. Having two modes of cruise control which work the same except one is adaptive, or "Traffic Aware" isn't appealing to me as there is too much of a chance of having regular CC on but thinking you have TACC.

I think all Tesla should get a LIM option, Autopilot enabled cars and not, as an alternative. It could be something you have to enable in settings so those who don't want it can leave it, but others can use it when the conditions demand it or when they prefer it.

Of course Autosteer would not work with LIM.

Pungoteague_Dave | 27. januar 2016

You do have regular cruise control when TACC does not work. It is called your right foot. Any form of cruise control is dangerous on icy roads, where the driver should be more engaged then ever.

Johann @IS | 27. januar 2016

Pungoteague_Dave, that's what I'm saying. The LIM function only makes sure you don't inadvertently speed in those conditions as well as when the TACC is disabled due to sensor blockage.

GHammer | 27. januar 2016

If you need a limiter to stop you from driving too fast when conditions are bad maybe you shouldn't be driving at all. As P_D said, under those conditions the best limiter is the connection between what's between your ears to your foot.

Johann @IS | 27. januar 2016

hammer, that's not what I'm saying. I'm saying I would like a limiter to prevent me from speeding when I have left conditions where Cruise control would have been a bad idea and the sensors got blocked by buildup of snow. Stopping to clear the sensors isn't always an option in heavy traffic.

Johann @IS | 28. januar 2016

Pungoteague_Dave, think back to your trip across the country, could you enable TACC at any time you deemed the conditions acceptable for it or were sensors at any time blocked preventing you from using it? If they were, did you stop and clear the sensors right away or did you drive on with your "regular cruise control" foot? Would a function that let you not worry about the speed limit have come in handy?

Perhaps you had no problems but I live in a country where my trip can have a portion at the beginning crawling around in a blizzard only to emerge from it a few miles on into clear skies.

The LIM function isn't meant to change TACC at all, only give us an option keep driving even though the sensors are blocked. That you can use it in bad conditions as it is not a conventional cruise control is just a bonus.

Son of a Gunn | 28. januar 2016


Johann @IS | 28. januar 2016


alex | 28. januar 2016

I understand the desire to get this feature implemented. However, I don't think it's a good idea. Take into account that Tesla would have to spend resources to develop and test this feature, and that the demand for such a feature is very small.

GHammer | 28. januar 2016

"I'm saying I would like a limiter to prevent me from speeding"

And again, I say, if you need a limiter to prevent you from speeding maybe you shouldn't be driving at all.

Johann @IS | 28. januar 2016

I'm sorry but your comment makes me think you don't drive or at least don't drive a Tesla.

A LIM would be a convenience feature just like TACC, Autosteer and other AP feature are. I don't need a limiter to prevent me from speeding, it will just make it easier. And it will let me stay at a constant speed even though TACC is disabled due to the sleet I drove through earlier. Stopping to clear the sensors isn't always an option in heavy traffic.

clindon | 28. januar 2016

I fully agree with the OP regarding the utility of a LIM function and support his call for it being included in a future Tesla upgrade. I recently had the "less than jovial" experience of intercity driving in extremely variable but overall pretty miserable winter storm road and weather conditions which precluded the use of the standard CC fitted to the ICE I use for long distance travel. (No TESLA yet and even if I had one I could not do this trip in one as there are nil SCs along this 500 km (300 mile) trip). Because the road conditions were extremely variable there were occasions when I was crawling along at 50 kph (32mph) or even less and just a few kms later conditions were such that I could run as high as 85 kph. Because the car was in "manual" speed control there were times in the good conditions that I unexpectedly found myself at up to 95 kph which caused a bit of a "pucker factor" and I backed off the accelerator to bring the speed back down to the 85 kph or so that I deemed appropriate and safe for those conditions. Had I had a LIM function available to me setting it at 85kph would have precluded those brief and risky "overspeed" moments whilst not impacting my driving at the lower speeds in the lesser conditions. Yes LIM would have been a very useful and welcome capability in those conditions.

I can also envision LIM being very useful when driving without traffic in areas where the speed limit changes frequently due to small settlements spread along the highway. On the 500 km trip mentioned above the speed limit is nominally 90 kph but wherever there are small towns the speed limit is reduced to 70/60/50 kph. In one area there are 7 or 8 such speed limit reductions over a 60 km stretch of the highway. I would prefer to use the LIM function in areas such as this rather than toggling a standard non-adaptive CC on and off or even resetting it at a lower speed when the speed limit reduction was some 7-10 km in duration.

If this is truly a simple case of repurposing and reprogramming a now unused switch on the Tesla cc stalk as was stated on the other LIM thread then what is the detriment to providing this function? Not everyone will use it but for some, especially for those of us in the northern US and Canada where we have "real "winters, it would be very useful. Is there a single feature on the MS, or MX for that matter, that everyone uses on a consistent basis - probably not. Just because any given individual will not use it doesn't invalidate it for others.

Thanks and Cheers


Red Sage ca us | 29. januar 2016

I've said that I would not use Autopilot in any situation where I wouldn't use Cruise Control. Inclement weather is never a time to use Cruise Control. Though I'm sure there are those who disagree.

1BadNerd | 29. januar 2016

The way LIM is described here sounds too dangerous. I should use my right foot on the pedal and press it 'somewhat' but not too much. Why not have LIM just put up an indicator icon or change the color and format of the speed readout?

Also, I just want to point out that there are other situations where a disabled TACC with a fallback CC would be useful. I was on a trip last summer and ran over a truck tire tread (unavoidable) and it knocked out my radar. I was a thousand miles from home and had to drive back without any cruise control whatsoever. Not a big problem, but annoying. I agree that a fallback CC is not likely to be implemented due to the confusion it might cause, but I sure wish I had it in that situation.

Johann @IS | 29. januar 2016

@Red Sage, LIM is only Cruise Control in the sense that you would use the cruise control stalk to activate it. The only difference between using LIM and driving entirely yourself is that LIM gives you an upper limit on how fast the car goes, and by that relieves you from varying the pressure on the accelerator when you are traveling at that set limit. It lessens the workload. It's even safer in inclement weather than using no driver aid at all.


@1BadNerd, a fallback CC would be dangerous, it would be too easy to forget TACC is disabled and assume the car will slow down automatically and either rear end someone or at least have a good scare. LIM doesn't allow you to forget as you need to keep pressure on the accelerator. It does however let you relax a little because you don't need to modulate the speed if you are traveling at the set limit. And you can change the limit at any time with the stalk.

buchholtz3 | 29. januar 2016

Regular CC? Yuck. On slippery roads you need to be in constant control and getting feedback through the steering wheel, the accelerator, and yes: your butt. Not the time to be worrying about automation. The speedometer is there for you to monitor for "accidentally going too fast". Please take the bus if you can't handle the above functions when the roads are bad.

Johann @IS | 30. januar 2016

@buchholtz3, did you read the thread before commenting?

Johann @IS | 30. januar 2016

There's a feature request for this on

Johann @IS | 30. januar 2016

There's a feature request for this on

Johann @IS | 30. januar 2016

There's a feature request for this on

Johann @IS | 30. januar 2016

Just found another feature request for this on

Johann @IS | 23. februar 2016

Why a Limiter would help in my situation, YMMV (2016-02-23):
Part 1:
Part 2:
Part 3:

rbgpgfl | 23. februar 2016

I just recently completed a round trip from NY to Fl. 85D with AP. Just about escaped the East Coast snowstorm but had some exposure along the VA. / NC border. This is where the front of the car got coated with a sheet of ice disabling all the front sensors. When I was stopped sometimes the collision warning system, or maybe the parking sensors, would warn me to stop due to an obstacle (ice coating) in front of the car. Since there is no heat from an ICE I was thinking whether Tesla could put some sought of heating element in the front bumper to avoid the ice buildup. Add it to the cold weather package.

murphyS90D | 23. februar 2016

My Ford Fusion Energi has active cruise control and standard cruise control. The difference is handled by requiring the car to be in Park to switch between the two thus emphasizing that the mode has been switched. If ACC drops out there is no cruise control possible until the car is parked.

grantwatson | 23. februar 2016

@ Johann:

I'm with you. I live in Canada and we get real winter (well, most years, not really this one). I've had the radar ice over several times. I agree Haggy's comment that the sensor design is flawed by including approximately a 1 cm depression for snow, ice, salt, and slush to build up in. I suspect that if it was flush with the surrounding bumper it would work better and I'm sure a future version will be changed to address this problem.

Clearly many here don't understand the distinction between LIM and CC, despite your diligent efforts to explain it. The only possible hazard I can see posed by LIM, even in nasty, icy conditions, is that it could affect your ability to accelerate out of a dangerous position - not something you really need to do often, despite all our rationalizations for needing HP/acceleration. If it was well-designed to include an easy override switch like you suggest (e.g. pushing to beyond 95%) I think that would solve that problem. That said, I'm not sure that a software-only update could achieve that. I think it would take an accelerator pedal with a "resistance point" that you could push through in order to be useful and offer the attention-saving effect we're looking for. All that said, I've never driven anything with LIM so these are just my uninformed musings.

I have wished for "standard" CC when TACC conks out, but considering your comments about the risks I tend to agree with you that it would be much safer to have a different - but still helpful - system like LIM that operates in a different way.

Johann @IS | 24. februar 2016

@rbgliny: Perhaps later builds will have a heating element around the radar but that won't help us, unless it's retrofit-able.

@murphyS85: Yes, that would help when build-up of snow and ice prevents TACC but wouldn't give the benefit of the LIM in slippery conditions. Also, after driving for a while you might forget which mode you're in and have an accident or a near miss.

@grantwatson: I would expect owners to be against anything that interferes with their launches so I don't expect a resistance point being added. Perhaps it would be best not to have that override, wheel spin could ensue as the car would suddenly output a lot of power. Cancelling LIM is easy, just push the stalk forward.

hdsm | 25. februar 2016

It is the third time i am asking for it !!
5 different threads on this subject are open in teslatap!

Not only in snow but also on small turning roads which are common in old europe is a speed limiter needed.

The maximum speed limit has to be set sothat you can concentrate on your driving .
please to those who don't know about this type of conditions just come over to test but not destroy all arguments.
TACC is very convenient on all constant speed roads but not on others, speed limiter then would be completely helpfull.
Thanks for your comprehension !

DTsea | 25. februar 2016

I agree. Cruise uses the camera too and in rain at night off the freeway is usually disabled. When active on off freeway streets it will brake hard if it sees a parked car around a curve as well.

Johann @IS | 22. august 2016

Winter is coming...

High Plains Drifter | 22. august 2016

Cruise control in the ice/rain/snow? Worst idea I have ever heard. Drivers are supposed to pay even more attention to the road under adverse driving conditions, not less.

Amazing how little some people value their lives or the lives they can impact.

Johann @IS | 23. august 2016

@justsendittomyemail Exactly, so the sooner we have the limiter the better.
Thank you for your support.

Johann @IS | 26. august 2016

The original text has been edited in an attempt for clarity.

kevin | 26. august 2016

I don't have my Model S yet, but there is a thread: Does Tesla have Plain Old Cruise Control? And the answer there is "yes." So you just disable TACC (setting) and set the maximum speed in Cruise Control and it sounds to me like this is what this thread is asking for. I can't test it. It is also my understanding that while the Tesla TACC can detect the speed limit from signs and GPS, you can also set it manually, and wouldn't this provide over speed warning chimes for the driver?

DTsea | 26. august 2016

Kevin, you cant disable TACC sensors i think. I would like CC in rain at night because model S is too easy to go too FAST and being able to set a limit is great.

Johann @IS | 26. august 2016

@DTsea, A Limiter would be perfect for the conditions you describe, both safer than (TA)CC and more fun.

SUN 2 DRV | 26. august 2016

Forget the limiter. Just drive the car yourself and stay in control of your own speed. If you can't be trusted to control the car appropriately you shouldn't be driving it.

Why would you ever want the car to not do exactly what you told it to do? Who's in charge, you or the car?

Johann @IS | 26. august 2016

@joehuber, I assume you don't use TACC or Lane Assist or any other driver assist feature of the car, why would you ever want the car to not do exactly what you told it to do? Who's in charge, you or the car?

kevin | 26. august 2016

There is a setting to disable TACC, one to disable collision avoidance, and one to disable automatic emergency braking. I don't have a car to test this yet, but if you turn off TACC and then set cruise control to your "Max" speed, than how is this different from a limiter?

edrising | 27. august 2016

Speed limiter is very useful for driving around town. With so many hazards all around, one is constantly changing speed; for narrow streets, school gates etc. The limiter means you can keep all your attention outside the car and know you will never get zapped by a speed camera!

Johann @IS | 31. august 2016

There is no way to disable TACC, you can only disable speed assist which lets you set a speed offset from the posted limit.

When using CC you set your preferred speed and then you can go above the set speed by pressing the accelerator. You have to cancel CC to go slower and to stop. Braking cancels CC.
TACC is the same except the car will slow down automatically if someone is in front.

Limiter however sets your top speed and you use the accelerator to control your speed from 0 to that speed. When you reach your set top speed the car accelerates no more but keeps that speed and you don't have to modulate your foot to stay at a constant speed. I am saying speed a lot. Limiter is not canceled by pressing the brake.