Tag: tesla

Elon Musk Launches ‘Burnt Hair’ Perfume To Help Pay For Twitter Deal



Images via Boring Company and 188100223 © Hutchinsphoto | Dreamstime.com

 

Elon Musk’s infamous Twitter buyout is shaping up to be a little more than the billionaire can handle, apparently, driving the Tesla boss to make quick bucks from his namesake.
 
The perfume is being sold under one of his other ventures, The Boring Company, and it’s weirdly called Burnt Hair by Singed. As for its scent, it is eloquently described as “the essence of repugnant desire.” The closest we get to an actual description is that it smells similar to when you lean over a candle.

 

The finest fragrance on Earth!https://t.co/ohjWxNX5ZC pic.twitter.com/0J1lmREOBS

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 11, 2022

In a tweet, Musk described that it was only natural he’d go down the fragrance route.
 
Each bottle costs US$100 and will begin shipping in the first quarter of 2023. Since its launch, it has sold over 10,000 bottles and amassed the wealthiest person alive a million dollars, which he claims is to help with his Twitter deal.

 

Please buy my perfume, so I can buy Twitter

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 12, 2022

 

After its inaugural sales, he is now touting himself as a “perfume salesman,” a description that is now reflected in his account’s bio. 

 
The Boring Company has had a track record of taking boring or out-there items and making them highly sought-after. For example, in 2018, it sold flamethrowers for US$500 each and raked in a cool $10 million. 
 
 
 
[via Reuters and Bloomberg, images via Boring Company and 188100223 © Hutchinsphoto | Dreamstime.com]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/420720/Elon-Musk-Launches-Burnt-Hair-Perfume-To-Help-Pay-For-Twitter-Deal/

US Officials Just About Capsize Elon Musk’s Cybertruck Boating Dreams



Photo 171172288 © Mariusz Burcz | Dreamstime.com

 

The ever-elusive Tesla Cybertruck has kept drivers on the edge of their seats with delay after delay. From mounting reports, though, the pickup is touted as an adaptable automobile built with ultra-strong materials and a futuristic utilitarian design. It could also “walk” like a crab, and might not have a doorknob.

 

Recently, CEO Elon Musk even divulged that the vehicle can also double as a… boat, albeit “briefly.”
 
However, the Washington State Department of Natural Resources has now taken to Twitter to reiterate that a truck that “anything that ‘serves briefly’ as a boat should not be used as a boat.”

 

Our derelict vessel crews are begging you to understand that anything that “serves briefly as a boat” should not be used as a boat https://t.co/lcrunbf1DJ pic.twitter.com/j2eL5tGcJZ

— Washington State Dept. of Natural Resources (@waDNR) September 29, 2022

The statement came after Musk expressed that the Cybertruck would be waterproof and make the journey across lakes, rivers, and seas that aren’t “too choppy.”
 
When probed to explain further how impervious to water the vehicle would be or how it would float, Musk responded by saying that an electric motor could be attached to its tow hitch to help propel it.

 

You’d need an electric propeller mounted on the tow hitch to go faster than a few knots.

There might a creative wheel hub design that can generate meaningful thrust.

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 7, 2022

Whether this feature will ever set sail is yet to be determined as Tesla currently faces an investigation into its very real Full Self-Driving feature. And in other news, Musk is also trying to get his Twitter deal afloat once again.
 
 
 
[via Technology Org and Driving, cover photo 171172288 © Mariusz Burcz | Dreamstime.com

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/420680/US-Officials-Just-About-Capsize-Elon-Musk-s-Cybertruck-Boating-Dreams/

Tesla’s Humanoid Robot Underwhelms At Demo—Friendly But Rough Around Edges

[Click here to view the video in this article]



Image via Tesla

 

At Tesla’s much-anticipated AI Day 2 event, CEO Elon Musk called to the stage ‘Optimus’, the humanoid robot that has been under construction—and scrutiny—since it was first announced a year ago. The curtains then pulled back, not for a man in a robot costume to take the stage this time, but for an actual, albeit unfinished, product to hobble onto the stage. 
 
The droid walked about the stage, waved to the audience, and even performed some knee raises to demonstrate flexibility, and still, it failed to rouse a standing ovation. Perhaps the audience was waiting for a fully-fledged humanoid Optimus to leap onto the stage and assemble a Tesla. Still, any progress from a man dressed as a robot is, perhaps, welcome upgrade. 

 

pic.twitter.com/EzxImHtqBP

— Tesla (@Tesla) October 1, 2022

The prototype was paraded around for the beginning of the presentation—exposed circuit boards and all—before Musk sent it back to resume development. He did note that the droid could do a lot more, but it was too delicate to show off any of its current skills in its state. 

 

A next-generation version of Optimus was also carried onto the stage with the help of three employees. 

 



Image via Tesla

The Associated Press reported that AI researcher Filip Piekniewski was unimpressed with the whole thing and even called it a “scam.” 
 
As the conference went on, Musk presented videos of Optimus carrying out said tasks, such as watering plants, carrying a heavy box, and lifting metal rods. But other than that, there was little to show that it was in a league of its own.

 



Image via Tesla

Musk stated that the final product will be a highly capable droid that can ease the burden of manufacturing and will cost less than a car. It’s roughly estimated to go for US$20,000. 
 
The presentation wrapped up with  Musk giving a roadmap of three to five years before Optimus takes up positions in factories worldwide.

 

There was also a moment when he touched on not wanting the robots to herald a Skynet-like future for our world. To prevent this, he mentions several safeguarding features, including a physical stop button that cannot be tampered with. But, again, with its current abilities, it’s safe to say we have nothing to worry about. 
 

 
 

[via BBC and TechCrunch, images via Tesla]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/420600/Tesla-s-Humanoid-Robot-Underwhelms-At-Demo-Friendly-But-Rough-Around-Edges/

Tesla Cybertruck Will Be ‘Waterproof Enough’ To Work As A Boat When Necessary



Image via Tesla

 

While the Tesla Cybertruck was first announced all the way back in 2019, it has yet to grace the roads, though the latest update from the company signals that production could finally start next year. 

Meant to be an electric vehicle that merges the performance of a sports car with the functionality of a pick-up truck, it now appears this do-it-all vehicle could double (or triple) up as something else—a boat. 

“Cybertruck will be waterproof enough to serve briefly as a boat, so it can cross rivers, lakes, and even seas that aren’t too choppy,” Musk explained in a tweet

“Needs to be able to get from Starbase to South Padre Island, which requires crossing the channel,” he added. 

 

But as one skeptic puts it:

 

if you drive your car off a cliff it serves briefly as a plane https://t.co/59OXGmIQGJ

— blaine capatch (@blainecapatch) September 29, 2022

Jokes aside, according to Electrek, the buoyant factor means the Cybertruck will be tasked with traversing the water for an estimated 1,100 feet, if it travels along the shortest route to the island. 

As ZDNet notes, there’s been a long history of innovators looking to create vehicles that function as boats, harking back as early as the 1960s.

 

However, most attempts have been unsuccessful, which is why we don’t often see such contraceptions on our daily commute. 

This makes Tesla’s announcement a significant one, though not everyone’s convinced the company will be able to pull it off. 

Many have pointed back to when Musk tried to demonstrate the strength of the Cybertruck’s window by throwing a metal ball at it, which ended up shattering it instead of being resisted. 

The Tesla CEO is poised to share more details on when buyers can expect to receive their highly-anticipated vehicles in the near future.

 

Needs be able to get from Starbase to South Padre Island, which requires crossing the channel

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 29, 2022

 

 

 

[via Electrek and ZDNet, cover image via Tesla]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/420572/Tesla-Cybertruck-Will-Be-Waterproof-Enough-To-Work-As-A-Boat-When-Necessary/

Tesla Rallies The Public To Decide Where Next To Build Universal Supercharger



Image via Tesla

 

For once, Tesla fans can be a part of the company’s decision-making process. The electric car maker has now opened the floor to followers to vote on a poll that will determine the next Supercharger location.

 

In its request, the dedicated Tesla Charging Twitter account has also asked followers to reply to its tweet with potential places to add to its 35,000 sites worldwide.

 

Supercharger Voting coming soon. Reply with location suggestions – replies with the most likes will be included in the poll. pic.twitter.com/LxNVnBtvCV

— Tesla Charging (@TeslaCharging) September 8, 2022

 

Currently, Hawai’i, Alaska, US National Parks, and Vancouver Island in British Columbia are among the most highly-requested locations by users.

 

As it stands, Tesla’s Supercharger network covers most of the United States. However, there are rural areas that remain inaccessible to Tesla drivers.

 

The poll comes as the company gears up to launch its Supercharger network, which will allow EVs of different brands to make use of its charging stations.

 

While this could be seen as a good thing and may encourage people to start using electric cars, TechCrunch notes that this might also put pressure on the entire network, especially in places like California where the proportion of EV drivers is higher.

 

According to an Engadget report, the company’s car sales rose roughly 87% last year. However, there weren’t enough Superchargers to match this growth, as its charging network only expanded by 35%.

 

 

 

[via TechCrunch and Engadget, cover image via Tesla]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/420336/Tesla-Rallies-The-Public-To-Decide-Where-Next-To-Build-Universal-Supercharger/

Tesla Builds Virtual Power Plant Through People’s Homes In Japan

Image via Tesla

Tesla has tapped on existing land and resources in Japan to quietly implement a virtual power plant. The wide-scale network is connected through homes and runs on Powerwall battery packs.

The automaker has been on a mission to install virtual power plants (VPPs) around the world. In June, it called upon the community in California to participate in supporting the grid to temper the state’s frequent blackouts.

This time, it’s rolled out a similar system comprising over 300 Powerwall home chargers in the Okinawan island of Miyako-jima.

 

Such networks send excess power to the grid for use during emergencies or blackouts. Being virtual, they’re easier to construct—not to mention, less pollutive.

In the case of the Japanese VPP, the surplus energy will help stabilize the island’s power supply, as well as help out during typhoons and other disruptive events.

 

In turn, users involved in the program will receive an incentive for volunteering their resources. Of course, they will also get to harness most of the power generated in their homes.

Tesla hopes to crank the number of participating Powerwall home chargers in Miyako-jima up to 400 by the end of the year, and have a total of 600 units at hand by end 2023.

Beyond Miyako Island, the company is looking to bring VPPs to other parts of Okinawa.

 

 

[via Electrek and Gizmodo, cover image via Tesla]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/420171/Tesla-Builds-Virtual-Power-Plant-Through-People-s-Homes-In-Japan/

Tesla Gears To Pull Crash-Test Videos Of Cars On Kid-Sized Dummies From Internet



Image via The Dawn Project

 

Tesla is on a mission to take down a safety campaign showing one of its cars running over a child-sized dummy.

 

In a cease and desist letter first uncovered by the Washington Post, the automaker has warned The Dawn Project to remove all instances of the advertisement from the internet.

 

In the clip, a child-sized dummy dressed up in a T-shirt and shorts is standing at the end of a driveway as a Tesla Model 3 rams into it in a head-on collision going at 20 miles per hour with FSD on.

 

Our new safety test of @ElonMusk’s Full Self-Driving Teslas discovered that they will indiscriminately mow down children.

Today @RealDawnProject launches a nationwide TV ad campaign demanding @NHTSAgov ban Full Self-Driving until @ElonMusk proves it won’t mow down children. pic.twitter.com/i5Jtb38GjH

— Dan O’Dowd (@RealDanODowd) August 9, 2022

 

According to The Dawn Project, a safety advocacy group founded by billionaire Dan O’Dowd, the video was created to illustrate the harmful effects of Tesla’s Full Self-Driving (FSD) feature and the implications should it be provided to all its cars.

 

As of right now, the autonomous driving feature is an add-on that drivers can purchase for US$12,000, or a monthly subscription of US$199.

 

However, Tesla told Electrek that FSD had, in fact, not been used during the filming of the video.

 

Some Tesla fans even took to defending the company themselves by posting videos of their own children standing in front of the car as they put their vehicles into FSD mode.

 

The videos became enough of a worry that the National Highway Traffic Safety had to step in and issue a warning to stop people from putting their kids in danger. Despite this, Elon Musk has taken to Twitter to assure users that autopilot makes cars “unequivocally safer.”

 

Essentially, passive Autopilot (car intervenes only when crash probability is high) cuts crashes in half.

Active Autopilot (car is driving itself) cuts crashes in half again.

Doesn’t mean there are no crashes, but, on balance, Autopilot is unequivocally safer.

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 17, 2021

 

While FSD may sound like a fully automated feature, the company still states that drivers must be ready to take over the wheel at any moment should something happen on the roads. Hence, the name is a bit of a misdirect, and that’s where the problem truly lies.

 

Previously, a potential ruling by the state of California also seeks to ban the FSD system as it blames Tesla for falsely advertising to its customers its full capabilities.

 

[via Futurism and Gizmodo, cover image via The Dawn Project]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/420129/Tesla-Gears-To-Pull-Crash-Test-Videos-Of-Cars-On-Kid-Sized-Dummies-From-Internet/

Tesla’s ‘Full Self-Driving’ Cars Hit A Roadblock With Regulators



Image via Carter Baran / Unsplash (CC0)

 

As Tesla races towards a future where its cars have “full self-driving” capabilities, a hurdle in the form of an unlikely rival is potentially preventing that future from becoming a reality. 
  
America’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) stands as the first US government body to fully oppose the self-driving movement. 
  
According to CNN, the DMV in California is citing irresponsible use of the words “autopilot” and “full self-driving” that could result in Tesla’s license to sell in the state being revoked. 
  
In the complaint that was issued, the DMV stated that using those descriptors on the company’s website alluded to the fact that the cars are entirely autonomous, when in fact they are not. Even if Tesla has added disclaimers to the promotion of its self-driving cars, the DMV argues that it isn’t enough to rectify the violation of how the technology is described.  
  
California is Tesla’s biggest market for its cars. The company is headquartered, has the best sales, and even created the car, in the state itself.  
  
A loss in this market could be a big blow to the automaker, and it is currently unclear how it is going to go about resolving the issue with the DMV.  

At present, the claims are limited to California, but others may follow suit soon. 
  
In Germany last year, a similar case was filed against Tesla, claiming its descriptions were misleading.  
  
Tesla has long since proclaimed that its cars could one day handle a fully autonomous driving system. Its CEO, Elon Musk, has repeatedly mentioned that such technologies are only a year or two away. 
  
While there has been no formal announcement of such capabilities as of late, could it be nipped in the bud before Musk even has the chance to announce it on Twitter? 

 

 

 

[via CNN, cover image via Carter Baran / Unsplash (CC0)]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/419971/Tesla-s-Full-Self-Driving-Cars-Hit-A-Roadblock-With-Regulators/

Tesla’s Humanoid Robot ‘Optimus’ Is One Bionic Step Away From Becoming Reality 

[Click here to view the video in this article]



Image via Tesla

 

The age of robots may be upon us as Tesla unveils more details of its very own humanoid robot.

 

Called ‘Optimus’, the android robot is set to be Tesla’s newest and greatest revelation in the tech industry. News about Optimus was given at the annual stockholders’ meeting, where attendees were given the official date for the forthcoming Tesla AI Day. They were also treated to the tech firm’s ambitious plans for integrating robots into our future.

 

The first real image of the robot was also presented during the speech, which had the android doing a heart sign with its hands. This would mark the first sighting of the bot, and while it may just be the hands, it is at least a sign that the project is still very much at the forefront of the company’s mind. 

 

During last year’s inaugural Tesla keynote, Optimus was described as a five-foot-eight-inch tall robotic figure with lifelike hands and a display screen for its face. It has a white body and black hardware, with an appearance in tune with Tesla’s futuristic and minimalist aesthetic.

 



Image via Tesla

 

The humanoid bot is being created to mainly take the load off of Tesla employees and accomplish repetitive tasks, though it was mentioned that it would eventually get an artificially-intelligent brain, develop its own personality, and be able to perform a whole host of other things.

 

However, in January of this year, CEO Elon Musk stated that he was going all in on this new venture for the company. He cited that production of the droid will take precedence over other current undertakings by the firm. He believes that it will one day become more valuable than a car.

 

Musk even gave a possible date for the beginning of its manufacturing, which he says will start as early as 2023.

 

For now, Tesla’s second AI Day is being pushed back from August 19 to September 30 in order to give the automaker time to create an actual working prototype of Optimus to put on display. 

 

 

 

 

[via Electrek and Inside EVs, images via various sources]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/419810/Tesla-s-Humanoid-Robot-Optimus-Is-One-Bionic-Step-Away-From-Becoming-Reality/

Tesla Installs Pool That Drivers Can Recharge In While Their Cars Power Up

[Click here to view the video in this article]



Photo 151532140 © Tealsuns | Dreamstime.com

 

Tesla, a company that often unleashes the unexpected, is now accommodating summertime hobbies, as well. At one of the biggest Superchargers in Germany, a YouTube channel called Tesla Welt Podcast has spotted a rather unique addition to the station: a swimming pool.

 

That’s right, Tesla owners, you can now take a splash as your car powers up.

 

Located at the Hilden Supercharger, the ‘SuperPool’ is an aboveground container that has the Tesla logo on its side. The video on the channel takes a tour around the tank and finds that it has a built-in cover to protect it from rain and two little Tesla-branded pool balls for drivers to play around with.

 

 

It would also seem like the pool is not completely fixed into position and could probably be moved around if needed. It is also presumed that company-owned solar panels are keeping it powered up. 

 

And just like any pool, there are rules people need to abide by. Only four people are allowed to swim in it at one time, and it can only be used for 10 minutes, giving just enough time for your car to charge.

 

All you need to do before entering the swimming area is show proof that you own the car and that you are charging it.

 

The SuperPool is an ongoing dive into entertainment facilities that the company is looking to put up at their charging stations. The electric vehicle maker is currently looking into creating a restaurant or open-air cinema for drivers to spend time at.

 

While a swimming pool does feel a bit out of the water, given the current climate, it could be just the refresher Tesla owners are looking for.

 

 

 

[via Electrek and Tech Unwrapped, Photo 151532140 © Tealsuns | Dreamstime.com]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/419758/Tesla-Installs-Pool-That-Drivers-Can-Recharge-In-While-Their-Cars-Power-Up/

Tesla Is Launching A Mosaic Of Users’ Pictures On Next SpaceX Mission



Image via Tesla

 

Tesla’s drivers are heading to space—and no, it’s not because of SpaceX.

 

In 2018, the carmaker set up a referral program to encourage the sales of its vehicles. One of the prizes was the chance to get your photograph sent into space.

 

Now, the company is keeping true to its word as it plans to send the mosaic of photos from its users into the galaxy in just a few days’ time with the Korean Aerospace Research Institute of South Korea.

 

The scheme allowed existing customers to share codes with new buyers that they could exchange for Supercharging credits. Those who shared the codes could then receive prizes based on how many people they referred.

 

Over the last few days, Tesla has contacted the winners of the program and offered to launch a photograph of their choosing into space.

 

The images have now been stitched into a collage, recreating the iconic photo of a SpaceX ‘StarMan’ driving a Tesla Roadster in space. 

 

Most of the fragments are pictures of the participants themselves, while other customers chose religious sayings, photos of celebrities, and pictures of their pets to be part of the mission.

 

In addition, Tesla also included its own images of everyday household items in the hopes of educating a few galactic beings about what life is like back on Earth. 

 

The laser-engraved image is being launched on the Korean Pathfinder Lunar Orbiter (KPLO) mission from Cape Canaveral in Florida on August 4 aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

 

This website lets you zoom in on the individual photographs.

 

 

 

[via Electrek and Tesla Oracle, cover image via Tesla]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/419733/Tesla-Is-Launching-A-Mosaic-Of-Users-Pictures-On-Next-SpaceX-Mission/

Tesla Gets Its Own Private Crossing Lane At US-Mexico Border

Photo 96607434 © Sergiomonti | Dreamstime.com

 

A sign reading ‘TESLA’ now greets authorized drivers on an exclusive crossing at the US-Mexico border.

Bloomberg reports that Elon Musk’s automotive company now has its own personal lane at the Colombia Solidarity Border Crossing, located at a rural area between the Mexican state of Nuevo León and Webb County, Texas. This checkpoint sits about 20 miles northwest of the busy World Trade Bridge in Laredo, Texas.

Tesla has been allocated the lane so its suppliers will be able to skip the traffic and cross the border more quickly for a “more expedited and efficient” experience, the Mexican state’s economic minister Ivan Rivas told Bloomberg. Rivas added that other companies could have their own lanes in the future too.

Contacted by Gizmodo, a press officer for the US Customs and Border Patrol in southern Texas said he wasn’t aware of the dedicated Tesla infrastructure, so it seems like the lane only exists on the Mexico side.

Reportedly, the waiting time for commercial vehicles on the US side of this bridge can stretch to as long as 22 minutes during highest-traffic periods. FAST lanes, however, can crunch this down to just eight minutes, on average.

 

 

[via Gizmodo and Bloomberg, cover photo 96607434 © Sergiomonti | Dreamstime.com]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/419589/Tesla-Gets-Its-Own-Private-Crossing-Lane-At-US-Mexico-Border/

Tesla Taps Steam To Bring A Whole Library Of Games To Its Cars



Image via Tesla

 

Tesla is closing in on making your car your new living room as it homes in on a deal with Steam to bring the gaming world right into your car—a decision that might not be taken lightly with drivers, seeing as how the automaker was recently dragged into investigations over its entertainment units.

 

Video games are already built into Tesla’s infotainment dashboard, prompting an investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Drivers had discovered that games could be played while their cars were in motion after tapping through a warning.

 

Tesla rectified the situation by disabling games for moving cars. Though, this has not deterred it from updating the system with more games.

 

In an update on Twitter, CEO Elon Musk disclosed that the progress with Steam’s integration has now reached a point where it will be put out for testing this August. 

 

We’re making progress with Steam integration. Demo probably next month.

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 15, 2022

 

The addition of Steam could see some 50,000 games brought to Tesla’s system. Steam plays host to some of the most advanced and immersive games in the industry; as such, it will be interesting to see how Tesla will integrate such experiences and make them suitable for car rides. 

 

Musk has been vocal about wanting to turn Teslas into spaces where friends and family can convene and hang out, essentially doubling them as lounges on wheels. Steam’s introduction into the infotainment system further pushes the development of the Full Self-Driving feature.

 

Tesla’splans to give full autonomy to the car seem to be well underway. But how far it will be able to pass through traffic authorities’ approval is yet to be determined.  

 

 

 

[via Electrek and The Street, cover image via Tesla]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/419509/Tesla-Taps-Steam-To-Bring-A-Whole-Library-Of-Games-To-Its-Cars/

Tesla Is Getting Rid Of Key Fobs To Reduce Waste



Photo 147803615 © Svyatoslav Lypynskyy | Dreamstime.com

 

Car keys have gone through an evolution over time, from physical keys to just having to be within a certain distance for the doors to unlock, and even becoming digital. Now, they are facing obsoletion as Tesla phases its key fobs out.   

 

The move to render keys a thing of the past is Tesla’s bid to eliminate waste. This comes after the company found that most of its users preferred to use their smartphones or key cards to unlock their cars instead. 

 

The finding was not a new one, as Tesla had already tried once to stop delivering its cars with keys with its Model 3 and Model Y cars. However, the automaker walked back on its decision and brought them back again.

 

Now, it seems like the key fobs could be gone for good. The move started on July 1 when newer Model S and Model X cars began being shipped without their keys. Users who do still want the car keys would have to fork out an additional US$175 to get them.  

 

The question remains: Will drivers react the same way users did when Apple removed chargers and earphones from iPhone boxes?

 

 

 

[via Auto Evolution and InsideEVs, cover photo 147803615 © Svyatoslav Lypynskyy | Dreamstime.com]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/419403/Tesla-Is-Getting-Rid-Of-Key-Fobs-To-Reduce-Waste/

Tesla Trailer With Solar Panel Wings Mysteriously Appears At Expo

Photo 151532140 © Ukrainian photographer Tealsuns | Dreamstime.com

 

With the mythical Cybertruck still out of sight, Tesla seems to have moved on to what could be the next big thing: an extender trailer with a solar array.

Presented at the IdeenExpo (meaning Ideas Expo) in Hannover, Germany, the concept featured pop-out Tesla solar panels atop a small trailer that wasn’t the automaker’s own. Images of the mysterious add-on were shared on Twitter by a Tesla enthusiast.

 

Tesla is at the “IdeenExpo” in Hannover.

They brought a solar range extender trailer with Starlink.

And a Model Y with the 4680 structural battery pack.

Next to the Tesla stand is the VW stand. There are apparently more VW employees at the Tesla stand than Tesla employees. pic.twitter.com/8IHxLI5ukW

— Tesla_Adri (@tesla_adri) July 4, 2022

 

There were no details as to why the display was there. Further, IdeenExpo is more of an early-years career fair for children and young adults—as per Inputinstead of an auto show. Chances are Tesla owners won’t be seeing an official version like this in the near future.

Electrek reports that the trailer also sported a receiver for SpaceX’s Starlink internet service, envisioning an electric vehicle add-on that might not only produce electricity off the grid but also deliver high-speed internet in out-of-reach camping sites.

 

The company is clearly exploring the idea of putting solar panels on vehicles, but when a road-ready product will see the light of day remains to be known.

Is this just a living example of Tesla and SpaceX’s finest technologies, rolled into one? If so, it’ll need a self-actualizing Tesla bot to drive it.

 

 

 

[via InsideEVs, Input, Electrek, images via various sources]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/419332/Tesla-Trailer-With-Solar-Panel-Wings-Mysteriously-Appears-At-Expo/

Tesla Cars Can Now Spot Potholes Before You Get Stuck In One



Photo 189718312 © Melpomenem | Dreamstime.com

 

Potholes, the bane of many drivers, are the cause of ruined suspensions and accidents. Now, Tesla is aiming to solve that problem by giving its cars the ability to raise suspensions when driving over a pothole or other defects on the roads.  

 

In the new 2022.20 update, the ‘Tesla Adaptive Suspension’ system will be available for drivers to utilize. This comes after an announcement in 2020 that the automaker was going to start recording data of detected potholes to create mini-maps for its cars in the future. Now, the update is finally here.

 

Tesla has said in its newest announcement that when driving over a pothole or over a rough road, Tesla’s Adaptive Suspension will adjust the height of the ride. However, this is subject to the data that has been previously collected. This would mean that over time, the maps would be constantly updated as this data evolves.

 

The information will be gathered from its Autopilot feature. A better understanding of rough terrain and potholes could help Tesla cars achieve full Autopilot and Full Self-Driving without drivers having to step in or pay as close attention to the roads as they would now.  

  

Although the cars cannot fully avoid potholes as of now, the feature is softening the blow of running over one and saving the car from serious potential damage. The option is now available in Tesla Model S and Model X cars through the controls menu where an Adaptive Suspension Damping toggle can be found.   

 

 

 

[via Electrek and News Week, Photo 189718312 © Melpomenem | Dreamstime.com]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/419323/Tesla-Cars-Can-Now-Spot-Potholes-Before-You-Get-Stuck-In-One/

Tesla Is Paying Homeowners To Run A Virtual Power Plant In California Together

Image via Tesla

 

The largest Tesla battery could actually exist across several homes. The automaker is now inviting Powerwall owners to unite and help launch a virtual power plant so as to temper California’s frequent blackouts.

 

Debuting in conjunction with Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E), Tesla’s virtual power plant in California will even compensate homeowners for supporting the grid. The program was piloted last year, but users only sublet their energy as volunteers.

Participants will now earn US$2 per kilowatt-hour contributed to the distributed battery. According to the company, some 50,000 Powerwalls are eligible for this public service, which could be incredibly useful to prevent outages in the state, or give it a reboot during emergencies.

 


Image via Tesla

 

A fully-charged unit with 20% backup reserve and 3kWh of energy, for instance, could give out 7.8kWh to the network during event hours, adding up to US$15.60 of compensation. Meanwhile, a fully-charged two-Powerwall system with a backup reserve of 40% and 5 kWh of output would deliver 11.2 kWh during times of emergency, earning the owner US$22.40

 

Powerwall owners signed up to the program will receive push notifications when a deployment is being scheduled, as well as after the event. Their home battery could then prioritize charging to gain enough juice for the discharge.

 

The total amount of energy generated by the Powerwalls will be calculated by PG&E at the end of the year, and Tesla will issue the payments before the end of March 2023.

You can find out more about the virtual power plant program here.

 

 

 

[via CleanTechnica and PCMag, images via Tesla]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/419223/Tesla-Is-Paying-Homeowners-To-Run-A-Virtual-Power-Plant-In-California-Together/

Tesla Moves To Open A 24-Hour Diner, Complete With A Theater, Charging Ports



Image via betto rodrigues / Shutterstock.com

 

Back in 2018—yes, four years ago—Elon Musk tweeted about the concept of a branded restaurant, decked out with an “old school drive in,” roller skates, and of course, Tesla Superchargers.

Now, reports have emerged from Bloomberg that the electric automaker could finally be realizing that dream, having submitted to the City of Los Angeles earlier this month detailing plans for a 24-hour Hollywood diner that would have its own movie theatre and charging stations. 

The 9,300-square-foot restaurant will be located on Santa Monica Boulevard, replacing a Shakey’s Pizza outpost, while competing with Trejos Coffee & Donuts and McDonald’s just mere blocks away. 

According to Robb Report, it’s been said the diner, which could resemble one of the brand’s gigafactories, will span two floors with a total of 218 indoor and outdoor seats. The upper floor will feature a special theater decked out with two huge 45-foot LED movie screens at the north and west end of the parking lot. 

While you’re grabbing a bite or watching the latest flick, you’ll be able to juice up your Tesla at one of the 28 superchargers on site. Or if you’re feeling particularly introverted, there’s even a feature to get your food delivered right to your vehicle.

Unsurprisingly, with Musk being a leading proponent of cryptocurrency, it’s likely the restaurant will accept alternative modes of payment, including Dogecoin

What kind of food will Tesla serve up at its first-ever food outlet? Fingers crossed we get a sneak peek at the menu soon.

 

 

 

[via Robb Report and Bloomberg, cover image via betto rodrigues / Shutterstock.com]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/418816/Tesla-Moves-To-Open-A-24-Hour-Diner-Complete-With-A-Theater-Charging-Ports/

Tesla’s Elon Musk Is Betting On Humanoid Bot, Not Cars, As The Company’s Icon

[Click here to view the video in this article]

Video screenshot via Tesla

 

In the coming years, when you think of Tesla, it won’t be an image of an electric car that pops up but a robot. That’s according to the vision of CEO Elon Musk, who recently expressed that people are underestimating the potential of ‘Optimus’, the humanoid bot that Tesla is working on.

 

“People have no idea this is going to be bigger than the car,” Musk shared in a TED interview. He reiterated this point during Tesla’s earnings call on Wednesday, declaring: “I was surprised that people did not realize the magnitude of the Optimus robot program.”

 

“The importance of Optimus will become apparent in the coming years,” Musk added on Wednesday. “Those who are insightful or looking, listening carefully, will understand that Optimus will ultimately be worth more than the car business, worth more than [Full Self-Driving].”

Tesla unveiled the human-sized Optimus, then called ‘Tesla Bot’, on its inaugural AI Day in August 2021. It said that the robot could be trained to take on “dangerous, repetitive, [or] boring” tasks that humans tend to steer clear from, such as grocery shopping and carrying payloads. 

 

In the recent TED interview, Musk shared that when Optimus becomes more advanced, it could even handle more complicated things like cooking meals, mowing the lawn, and being a caretaker.

 

He anticipates that Optimus will be just one of the many humanoid robots available for deployment in homes by 2050. Before that happens, though, engineers will need to install enough intelligence in them for the bots to “navigate the real world and do useful things without being explicitly instructed”—two skills that make up the Tesla system.

 

The Tesla bot will be here sooner than you think. Musk is projecting that an early version of Optimus will be demonstrated as soon as 2023.

 

 

[via TechCrunch and Interesting Engineering, cover image via Tesla]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/418465/Tesla-s-Elon-Musk-Is-Betting-On-Humanoid-Bot-Not-Cars-As-The-Company-s-Icon/

Tesla Removes Free Mobile Charging Cable From Boxes, Elon Musk Justifies Why



Image via betto rodrigues / Shutterstock.com

 

In a move that some may say seems similar to the route Apple has taken, Tesla has announced it will no longer be including a mobile charging cable with every vehicle purchase, and will instead sell them separately. 

Now, if you’re planning to shell out for one of the most sought-after electric cars on the market, remember to factor in an extra US$275 for a level 1 charger, or US$400 for the level 2. 

This change was first pointed out by Twitter user Tesla Adri, according to Engadget, and was later backed up by founder Elon Musk, who said the decision was made due “usage statistics” of the charger being “super low,” which he deemed “wasteful.” 

In light of the decision, however, the Tesla Technoking has said the automaker will be dropping the price of its lower-level charger to US$200 (US$75 discount) and make it easier to order together with the car. 

It’s important to note that the mobile connector isn’t a necessity, especially for users who use a wall connector or Superchargers to juice up their vehicle. 

 

Based on feedback received, we will drop mobile connector price to $200 & make it easy to order with car.

Note, mobile connector is not needed if you have a Tesla wall connector or to use Superchargers.

Recommend installing Tesla wall connector well before car arrives.

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 17, 2022

 

 

 

[via Engadget and Electrek, cover image via betto rodrigues / Shutterstock.com]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/418435/Tesla-Removes-Free-Mobile-Charging-Cable-From-Boxes-Elon-Musk-Justifies-Why/

Tesla Police Cars Are Making Life More Difficult For Washington Cops

[Click here to view the video in this article]

A photo of a Tesla Model Y, the model used by the Spokane Police Department. Photo 229199576 © Tatiana Golmer | Dreamstime.com

 

Owning a Tesla may be a dream for many, but for law enforcers in Spokane, Washington, it’s a less-peachy dream.

As per 4 News Now, the local police department isn’t impressed by the Tesla Model Y cars that it adopted earlier this year. The electric vehicles just couldn’t keep up with the laborious hours that officers have had to commit on the road.

 

 

Major Mike McNab explained to the news outlet that the cars have been put through two shifts per day, with a three-hour break in between, as some police officers have to work for more than 10 hours. This is too much for Tesla batteries to bear.

Having to charge the cars also disrupts work for law enforcers. Major McNab said that due to the high-stakes scenarios officers face each day, the added burden of keeping patrol cars alive just makes things more challenging.

With patrol officers decked in full gear, the interior is also too cramped for two law enforcers to be seated in front for prolonged periods of time. The middle console would have to be removed for the officers to be seated comfortably.

Luckily, the Teslas won’t be wasted. The electric cars have been donated to the domestic violence unit, whose officers focus more on detective work and wouldn’t have to stay seated in a vehicle for 10 hours.

 

Interestingly, the department isn’t giving up on electric vehicles—it’s just not into a Tesla. And although converting an EV into a police car costs about US$30,000, City Council President Breean Beggs pointed out that the choice would be more economical in the long run. “These electric vehicles are reported to last twice as long,” noted Beggs. “Any time you buy an electric vehicle, it’s like you’re buying two vehicles for one.”

 

 

 

[via Carbuzz and KXLY, cover photo 229199576 © Tatiana Golmer | Dreamstime.com]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/418362/Tesla-Police-Cars-Are-Making-Life-More-Difficult-For-Washington-Cops/

Tesla Begins Building Hollywood ‘Diner & Drive-In Theater’ Supercharger Station



An existing Supercharger station. Image via Tesla

 

Electric vehicles and their chargers may be a foray into the future of the automotive industry, but that doesn’t always mean that the past has to be left behind in the dust. 

 

Tesla is aiming to bring a blast from the past to its futuristic Supercharger stations, with plans to build a diner and drive-in theater concept at one particular station in the Hollywood area in California. 

Initially planned for Santa Monica, California, as far back as 2018, the project had been put on hold due to regulatory concerns. Construction of a regular Supercharger station still proceeded there. 

Electrek reports that the diner and drive-in was eventually approved in April 2021. The first part of the station’s construction was recently completed, but without the extra frills—for now, at least. 

However, it seems that the company has decided to shift the diner and drive-in concept to a different location, according to a tweet by CEO Elon Musk. Neither of those two elements appear to be in the construction plans for Santa Monica, at least.

 

And futuristic diner / drive-in theater planned for Hollywood area!

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) February 19, 2022

 

At first, it was thought that the location would take on a 1950s-inspired theme to fit with the retro nostalgia, but it appears that the firm has shifted gears to focus on bringing a futuristic touch to the concept. It might fit better with the Cybertrucks, after all. 

It has also been noted by Teslarati that the Hollywood location will be accepting the cryptocurrency Dogecoin as a form of payment for the food and drinks that will be made available when the facilities are open. 

 

 

 

[via Electrek and Teslarati, image via Tesla]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/417832/Tesla-Begins-Building-Hollywood-Diner-Drive-In-Theater-Supercharger-Station/

Tesla Disables Self-Driving Feature That Causes Cars To Run Stop Signs



Image ID 93770553 © Helgidinson | Dreamstime.com

 

In yet another recall, Tesla has announced it will be disabling a feature on 54,000 vehicles that causes cars to run through stop signs.

According to the BBC, the automaker will soon offer an over-the-air software update to disable the “rolling stop” function, though founder Elon Musk said that the feature didn’t create a safety issue but caused cars to slow down instead of halting completely.

 

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) regulations do stipulate that drivers have to come to a complete stop at a stop sign before proceeding, as “failing to stop at a stop sign can increase the risk of a crash.” 

It turns out that, instead of bringing the vehicle to a complete standstill, Tesla’s “rolling stop” allowed cars to travel through all-way stop intersections at up to 5.6 mph, despite the company alleging that this only occurred when a variety of measures were met.

“There were no safety issues. The car simply slowed to -2 mph and continued forward if clear view with no cars or pedestrians,” said Musk.

As per Bloomberg, vehicles affected in the recall include 2016 – 2022 Model S and Model X, 2017 – 2022 Model 3, and 2020 – 2022 Model Y cars.

 

 

 

[via BBC and Bloomberg, cover image via Helgidinson | Dreamstime.com]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/417576/Tesla-Disables-Self-Driving-Feature-That-Causes-Cars-To-Run-Stop-Signs/

Tesla’s Full Self-Driving Mode Disparaged In Wild, Full-Page New York Times Ad



Image via The Dawn Project

 

A barrage of complaints concerning Tesla’s Full Self-Driving Mode has surmounted into one group taking out a full-page advertisement on last Sunday’s edition of the New York Times paper.

 

The Dawn Project, a newly-established campaign fighting to get less secure software banned so as to prevent dangerous cyberattacks on essential systems found in “cars, the power grid, water plants, and chemical factories,” called on readers to “Don’t Be a Tesla Crash Test Dummy.”

 

It lambasted the automaker for launching “the worst software ever sold by a Fortune 500 company”—a newspaper stunt that would involve no meager sum. On top of that, it said it would offer US$10,000 to the first person who was able to name “another commercial product from a Fortune 500 company that has a critical malfunction every eight minutes.”

 

“We did not sign up our families to be crash test dummies for thousands of Tesla cars being driven on the public roads,” the group insisted. On its website, it proclaimed: “Computers have become a grave threat to humanity since they have been hooked up to the internet together with every safety critical device. Ordinary commercial software was never intended to be used in systems which people’s lives depend on.”

 

The initiative’s founder, Dan O’Dowd, happens to be the CEO of Green Hill Software, a rivaling firm that also builds automotive security systems. TechCrunch notes that although there is “potential competitive bias,” the group is building its case based on several reports of the beta software going rogue

 

Worth pointing out is that, instead of testing this feature on real vehicles, the Dawn Project is wholly backing up its argument with observations from “many hours” of YouTube videos—a move that’s been criticized by supporters of Tesla. The footage supposedly shows real Tesla models encountering a “Critical Driving Error” every eight minutes or so. These include incidents of  Teslas “disobeying traffic signs or signals,” “making contact with an object when it could have been avoided,” and “disobeying safety personnel or safety vehicles.”

 

Taking out a full page ad in The New York Times to spread lies & doubt about Tesla Full Self-Driving is a new low… pic.twitter.com/VPvCYtnygB

— Jeff 💙✌️ (@JeffTutorials) January 16, 2022

 

The group is now calling for the feature to be “removed from our roads until it has 1,000 times fewer critical malfunctions.”

Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk snidely dismissed the accusations put forth by the advocacy group, dissing O’Dowd’s Green Hills software and declaring: “Linux [for the win].”

 

The car company hasn’t claimed the technology to be perfect, however, and Musk previously even warned that the software—still in beta—was “not that great [in my opinion]” and that drivers should “please be paranoid” when the mode was activated.

 

In spite of its problems, at least one silver lining seems to have arisen from the introduction of the Full Self-Driving feature. Last month, it was reported that a woman’s water bag had broken while she was in her Tesla. With all systems go and no time to rush to the hospital, she and her husband had no other choice than to switch on the technology so as to personally deliver her baby.

 

 

 

[via TechCrunch and autoevolution.com, images via The Dawn Project]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/417410/Tesla-s-Full-Self-Driving-Mode-Disparaged-In-Wild-Full-Page-New-York-Times-Ad/

Tesla Updates Its Model S EV For International Drivers



Image via Tesla

 

On Tuesday, Tesla unveiled a refreshed version of the Model S car at a private viewing in Taiwan. 

The new vehicle boasts a completely new interior, per Electrek, as well as an updated exterior and improved powertrain compared to its predecessor. 

Both the headlights and taillights are new, and the publication has also noted that the headlights seem to be matrix projector headlights, which are similar to those incorporated in the company’s Model 3 and Model Y cars. 

Tesla investor Sawyer Merritt shared some of the vehicle’s new updates on Twitter, spotted by InsideEVs.  These notably include a new native CCS2 charging port rather than Tesla’s proprietary Supercharger plug, in addition to a new door design for the charging port. 

 

BREAKING: Brand new Model S design with new headlights and charge port photographed in Taiwan! These changes are expected soon with deliveries in the US.

Source: https://t.co/s6EYunA1iG pic.twitter.com/vkkxpjfE2D

— Sawyer Merritt (@SawyerMerritt) January 11, 2022

CCS2, or Combined Charging System (type 2), is one of the current standards for DC fast charging in electric vehicles. These sockets combine the AC and DC pins, making for a smaller build than a competitor CHAdeMO socket, for example.

Electrek notes that the new vehicle is most probably planned for delivery in international markets where CCS is the standard and Tesla’s own Superchargers may not be as ubiquitous as in the US. 

Tesla also revealed a new Model X at the same time, but without the same influx of notable updates besides the addition of the CCS port.

 

I’m seeing some questions on what’s different on these Model S vehicles vs the ones from last year.
• New adaptive headlights with an outer projector lamp that supports a matrix LED
• Deletion of rear cross bar trim
• New native CCS2 charging port with updated door design

— Sawyer Merritt (@SawyerMerritt) January 11, 2022

 

 

 

[via Electrek and InsideEVs, image via Tesla]

http://www.designtaxi.com/news/417359/Tesla-Updates-Its-Model-S-EV-For-International-Drivers/