These images compared to an older tear-down of a Model S chassis do not have the tell-tale right-hand drive capability. This would suggest that Tesla had known this outcome from the start of manufacturing.
Once again it appears that RHD countries are considered the poor cousin when it comes to the possibility of providing the Model S and X to our shores.
However, to appease some right-hand drive countries that also cater to left-hand drive vehicles it appears they are looking to those markets to provide access to the Model S & X left-hand drive versions.
Tesla Right-Hand Drive? But let’s also look at it from Tesla’s perspective. The new Model S & X vehicle numbers may be the reason for the change in direction. RHD drive countries have taken up the Model 3 and Y in great numbers outstripping and overtaking the demand for the Model S & X ten fold.
Tesla could have looked at the cost-benefit and decided that in countries where the right-hand drive is the only option that the numbers were small enough that the change would not be significant for the company.
Furthermore, countries like the UK and Japan which can also cater for left-hand drive vehicles can still access these vehicles. Tesla can still deliver the vehicles just left-hand drive.
Tesla has made no secret of their need to streamline manufacturing and this could have also been a determinant factor in the decision.
Unfortunately, the group that feels the impact of this decision is the customers in those RHD countries that do not cater to Left-hand drive vehicles.
I have never considered buying a model s or X as the cost here in Australia has always been exorbitant. Way beyond mine and many others mean. Not that I wouldn’t consider it if the cost was more reasonable.
But in this instance, the customer, the advocates, the prompters and most importantly the fanboys miss out.
Tesla’s mission has always been the transition to sustainable transport and energy. If this is true and Tesla wishes to stand by this mission, then it would seem they would maintain a version of vehicles for all corners of the globe.
However, it would seem based on internal calculations that right-hand drive vehicles in the Model S & X class are no longer viable.
So, the next question that some have been asking is what next?
What about the Cybertruck reservations that have been placed in many of the right-hand drive countries is there a possibility that they too will be declined?
Time will tell, but, let’s hope that this is an isolated incident and that the right-hand market is still a viable market for future Tesla vehicles.
Tesla Right-Hand Drive? A mission is one thing, but passion rules the heart. Let’s hope that the passion that most fans of Tesla and especially for their Model S & X are once again rewarded as time moves.
It was a shock that this was the decision, but I hold out hope that one day not that far ahead we will see their return and the future of Tesla vehicles ongoing will be bright.
David created EV-HQ to share his passion for Electric vehicles
EV-HQ is here to inspire you to consider the possibilities
Starship & Tesla – launching a better future. What a week. The largest and most powerful rocket to ever be launched in human history.
Until this week, the Apollo rockets were by far the most powerful rockets to leave Earth. They held that record for 50 years until this last Thursday when SpaceX’s Starship and Booster created history.
Just like Apollo, SpaceX’s Starship is looking to the stars to move human existence multi-planetary. The Apollo missions achieved this when they landed a man on the moon. From that time till this, the missions have not been as lofty or as inspiring.
But now as Starship has finally lifted from the ground and leapt to the skies, we again feel a sense of pride, of hope that we as a human race have something to strive for, something to reach for and a way to reach out and find the destination in the stars.
Inspiring the world
Millions of people around the world watched as the silver booster with the obsidian Starship a top lifted from the ground. This test of the rocket was to prove it was possible to achieve that which had never been done before, a rapidly reusable rocket, measuring 120m long with a diameter larger than a small house this rocket has been developed for a large movement of goods and personnel to Mars and the stars.
None of this would be possible without the amazing people who work tirelessly to bring the vision of the founder Elon Musk to light. His pursuit of the future we all dreamed of as kids is nothing short of a passion that no one else has had the drive, capability, and desire to see through.
John F Kennedy once said, “We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard,” (Kennedy told the crowd at Rice University in Houston.)
Any exploration of a place yet unknown is always going to be complex, challenging, and fraught with risk, missteps, and pivots. But if we stay the course and strive for what has always been told is impossible, letting smart, bright, and passionate people do their best work, then the stars are the limit.
Starship & Tesla – launching a better future.
Just like Starship and the people making the impossible possible, Tesla is striving to make the earth that little bit better for our future also.
With the combustion engine dominating the last century we now find ourselves in a race to help mother earth heal from contamination brought upon her by humanity.
This week Tesla advised that they again had a record-breaking quarter introducing thousands more electric vehicles to happy customers. Changes in pricing have helped to make the vehicles more accessible for average people, increases in battery pack uptake and storage capabilities and Model Y being the best-selling vehicle in Europe, America and many other locations shows that their mission to transition the world to sustainable energy is heading in the right direction.
Sharing of resources
With SpaceX, Tesla shares its resources of engineering and technology with Space X and many other Elon Musk companies. It is this holistic view that provides not only Starship the great minds to achieve the impossible, but the reverse is also true with people from SpaceX providing Tesla with great ideas and innovations.
All told we as a human race need to be inspired, to find greatness in the ordinary, to seek opportunities to dream, imagine, witness and create future history into reality.
I grew up watching cartoons and shows like The Jetsons, Mask, transformers, the Flintstones so many more. And still, I am waiting for that future that inspired my generation’s imaginings of what the future could be.
I am truly enjoying watching that history become a reality.
Starship & Tesla – launching a better future. Space X has done something incredible this week and they should be so proud. Tesla has again proved that Electrification can lead to better outcomes for the future of humanity. And together they both with help from many incredibly talented people deliver a better world for us all.
David created EV-HQ to share his passion for Electric vehicles
EV-HQ is here to inspire you to consider the possibilities
Easter Eggs – Gaming, Tesla, or Chocolate? Easter Eggs at this time of year are a symbol of new life.
However, there is another type of easter egg.
So how did they get their name Easter Egg?
Warren Robinett was the first person to create an easter egg in a computer game. His name and the credit for making the game “Adventure “on the Atari 2600 was never given to him as at the time Atari policy was to never credit to anyone.
So, Warren Robinett created his own way of hiding his name and only through a specific process would his name appear thus creating the first Easter Egg in a computer game. It started an authentic, fun way for developers to create interesting challenges and tests for gamers that became a legacy.
When Tesla started, Elon Musk, a gaming enthusiast loved the easter egg idea and created many across the years that remain ever present today. Elon being a pop culture fan and a wicked sense of humour appealed to the nerd in all of us by creating with his team many easter eggs.
Tesla has many and varied easter eggs, some in the cars, some in the app and all of them are fun and enjoyable to experience.
There’s a new kid in town – Mustang Mach-e, Ford’s latest step towards bringing their electric vehicles to the Australian shores.
The Mach–e was shown to the world back in 2019 and went on sale in the USA in December of 2020. Since then, Ford has been working out the kinks and refining the vehicle. With Sales in the thousands, it has been a well-received vehicle to the market in the USA.
This week Ford revealed the Mustang Mach–e to Australia. Ford announced the arrival of the Mach – e at the Australian Grand Prix with lots of fanfare. They had three of the vehicles driving round the circuit to show it off to the crowd. It is no surprise that the Mustang MAch-e has helped Ford become the second largest seller of EV’s in USA in 2022. https://insideevs.com/news/583838/us-ford-mustang-mache-sales-april2022/
The Australian version will come in 3 variants, Select, Premium and GT.
All three variants will have in the interior a 15.5-inch touch screen in a central location to manage infotainment and Ford’s Sync4 Software.
To partner with this a screen mounted behind the steering wheel is 10.2 inches showing the speed and other metrics for driving.
Furthermore, wireless charging and 10 speakers Bang and Olufsen sound system.
To compliment all these wonderful accessories a panoramic sunroof will come as standard.
FORD getting serious
There’s a new kid in town – Mustang Mach-e. Ford is starting to get serious about their presence in Australia and their vision for electric vehicles globally. They are looking to start with the Mach-e but that is far from the end, they will attempt to have a further 4 more electric vehicles in Australia by the end of 2024.
It is great to see another electric vehicle hit the shores of our wonderful country. This shift towards electric vehicles is growing at a pace that is hard to fathom and yet long overdue.
Just like the mobile phone I believe Australia will lead the world in uptake of electric vehicles as long as the prices when announced for ford and others are within reach of the average person, especially with the recent increase in living costs.
Ford will have a good seller on its hands with the Mach-e and I look forward to seeing them on the road and up close and personal.
David created EV-HQ to share his passion for Electric vehicles
EV-HQ is here to inspire you to consider the possibilities
Tesla – Master Plan 3 -The Goal. Tesla’s investor day laid out its direction and the key players that will help them get there.
There was a lot of speculation about the investor day with lots of predictions and suggestions that this would be like any other presentation with a few hints about future products and a breakdown of how they got there.
Many predicted that the suggestion of the new cheaper Tesla would be the discussion point and a recap on the Cars, power, charging and manufacturing, but to say they underestimated the depth and breadth of what was presented is being conservative.
Master plan 3
Master plan 1 and 2 were focused mainly on the vehicles creating a base to work from in the electric car industry to deliver the
The achievement of this and then the subsequent delivery of Giga Factories, battery cell production and a few other vehicles like the SEMI set the stage for the master plan 3 to be focused on the vehicle and manufacturing ramp.
However, Master plan 3 really delivered on the future of Tesla and how they are moving the world to sustainable energy and transportation.
The plan started out with a look at energy and how it will be possible to move from fossil fuels to renewables. This was laid out in a 5 Step process.
Repower the existing grid with renewables.
Switch to electric vehicles
Switch to heat pumps in homes, businesses, and Industry.
Electrify high temp heat delivery and Hydrogen.
Sustainable fuel planes and Boats
Now, most of this has been spoken about before but the one surprise was the discussion around Hydrogen. Elon has always said that hydrogen was not a great source of energy for small road vehicles. But in this instance when talking about large industrial machinery he did concede that hydrogen had a place.
They also discussed the minerals required for a sustainable future with Lithium and beyond to be mined. They also conceded that mining would continue just not as much as current coal mining.
Resources that would need to be mined ongoing included.
One interesting fact was that due to the recent increase in interest, the volume of lithium that is being discovered is growing exponentially.
One of the key differences when talking about renewable minerals is their recyclability of them. Once a battery is depleted and targeted for recycling the minerals inside them can be repurposed back to the same purpose again and again.
Tesla – Master Plan 3 -The Goal. The master plan is an impressive step towards looking forward and setting goals for the planet, not just the Tesla Company.
The argument that Tesla is just a car company seems to be no longer narrative and continually moves Tesla towards a Technology company more and more.
It is truly exciting to hear and see the vision that Tesla is laying out to see.
EV-HQ founder, passionate about sharing the passion for Tesla and Electric Vehicles everywhere.
Someone uses your referral code as it was before and you earn credits. The credits can then be used by you and the person who used your code to purchase accessories, upgrades, and supercharger credits. When the code is used, both get benefits.
These make it much more appealing to your average person. It entices you to purchase through a friend or relative because you get some benefit to you and me when we do.
Of course, the rewards of new cars and the like do not appear to be here anymore and that is what makes it so sustainable.
The Tesla Mobile app was recently changed to show a locked chest in the top right-hand corner. When you select the icon, the following page opens.
Loot Box front page
This page shows the current credits that you must spend.
It also shows the free supercharging credits after they are purchased.
The referral Button when selected asks to be connected to your contacts. You can then send your referral code to all your contacts.
At the bottom of the page, you have a further 3 icons.
The original “Loot Box” icon, is consistent with the icon you selected to get to this page. Then a credits icon and finally a redeem icon.
When selected the credits icon shows the following page.
The top right is a history tab used to track credit history.
Below this is 3 selections
When sending a referral from this page it shows an image of the credits you receive when you have an appositive referral. This credit would then appear in your credits after the purchase is complete.
When a person uses your referral code not only do you, as the referrer, get credits but so too does the buyer or person who has purchased the vehicles through your referral link.
This selection shows credits that you get if you already own a Tesla and purchase another through your referral code another vehicle for you.
Each of these selections will give you the value based on the selection of the vehicle being purchased.
On the Home page of the Loot box, I mentioned there was another icon on the bottom of the page, Redeem.
When selected this page shows the following, a total credit you have earned at the top?
Below this is 4 menu selections
This selection is about the essential items that tesla wants to promote. It is no surprise then that the Supercharger selection is the main image on this page.
The lifestyle selection shows a few items that can be purchased with the credits, from the tesla shop. A beanie, water bottle, t-shirt, and travel mug/tumbler. These will be the beginning of the selections I am sure, and this list will grow over time.
The accessories selection again is pulling items from the tesla shop, but the difference is it is promoting items for the vehicles. The Wall connector, the USB drive, the Pet Liner, Roof Sunshade and Center Console Trays are all featured and offer reasonable credit limits.
Upgrades would reference any grades that your current vehicles may not have. I have all the upgrades but would think that premium connectivity is a good example of what to expect here and I am sure cooler tech will appear here in the future.
Below are just some of the key points outlined in the term and conditions.
Referrals cannot be applied after an order has been placed.
Referral Credits are available to current owners in the Tesla community who refer first-time Tesla customers.
Buyer Credits are also granted to first-time customers who order a qualifying Tesla product through a referral link
Loyalty Credits are granted to current Tesla owners who are purchasing additional Tesla products for themselves.
Credits are awarded after the installation and activation of a Tesla energy product (the “Grant Date”).
Tesla customers must be at least 18 years old to be eligible for credits, which are non-transferable and not redeemable for cash.
Referral links should be shared from one person to another, not broadcast en masse on public platforms.
So why now? Why bring back the referral program, when you cannot keep up with demand and it puts you in a position of creating more demand?
I believe it is about the customer. Tesla has for many years promoted one of its best assets, the people who keep talking about tesla without paid advertising. You see a referral program of this type takes that promotional expense and gives it back to the customers that have made tesla so successful.
Tesla reinforces this with the following line in the term and conditions
“We introduce programs such as these in good faith and expect the same good faith in return. The intent of this program is to reward loyal Tesla owners for sharing their passion for Tesla products with their friends and family. “
It is one of the best sales and marketing tools because the passionate people who have found the electrification of vehicles to be a revolution can now be thanked for their efforts and rewarded for their loyalty.
Loyalty above all is never celebrated by any company so it is wonderful to see a company like a Tesla once again rewarding those that have made them what they are today.
The evolution has not only turned the car industry on its head but has accelerated other industries to change direction, focus on the future of their products and shake things up to support the new age of electrification.
One industry that has been at the center of this shake-up has been the Battery companies. Panasonic, CATL, LG Chem, Gotion, Northvolt and many more including the startups like Tesla.
Batteries have become essential for the future of not just vehicles but support solar and the power grid. The storage of electrical energy to be used to propel electric motors for vehicles, to store large quantities of energy in storage systems for small dwellings and on a larger scale megapacks that store power grids are becoming the norm.
Battery Tech – the new power monoliths, This evolution has taken some companies from sheer obscurity to global leaders. Panasonic for example was never really known for its battery technology, but now its name is synonymous with Tesla the leading electric car brand globally.
It is this evolution that has all battery manufacturers vying for the opportunity to do the same with other car brands.
Battery technology has in the most part sat idle with little innovation for a hundred or so years. Acid batteries were the most evolutionary step forward in the early 19th century with Lithium-ion batteries coming with the evolution of the Smartphone.
Outside of these batteries have been nothing more than an afterthought. Until now.
Tesla announced in late 2020 that it was about to rethink battery tech and the evolution of battery technology with the development of 4680 cells. They had redesigned the idea of the battery. Retaining the cylindrical shape but looking for better materials and ways to create them in a smaller footprint.
This forward-thinking allowed them to move with pace and partners to have vehicles in 2023 to be delivered with this battery technology driving their vehicles into the future.
Elon has mentioned on several occasions that Tesla and all car companies will need as many battery cells as they can get their hands on. This has undoubtedly been the case with constraints in the early 2021s as car deliveries and manufacturing was hamstrung by the limited supply.
However, that does not seem to be the case with Tesla currently as production continues to grow along with the construction of more battery cell factories like the one recently announced in Berlin.
But what about the other companies? Each has a different manufacturing process and format. Some are creating the typical cylindrical batteries while others are pouching style and prismatic. Regardless they are producing as many as they can due to the rise of the electric vehicle.
When established car companies start looking to move to electric, they have a lot of knowledge of vehicles but not much in the way of battery technology, in most art. This is proving to be one of the biggest challenges in understanding the complexities of battery management systems and how they integrate third-party systems in their new vehicles.
Furthermore, they are all competing for the same battery capacity, which is causing delays in car production. The battery companies cannot deploy enough cells fast enough.
It just proves that Tesla’s early thinking about the development in the house of their own battery cells and top to bottom integration puts them far ahead of the competition as they do not have to compete with anyone but themselves.
Of course, this challenge will only last for several years before new players and new thinking around battery tech will bring balance and a more competitive advantage to an equal playing field.
Batteries are fast becoming the coal of the future. The difference is that with this technology the batteries are almost all able to be recycled.
Battery Tech – the new power monoliths, Redwood materials have shown itself to be ahead of the curve with the company developing techniques and processes for disassembling and recycling battery packs and batteries to be reused and recycled back into electric vehicle technologies.
This thinking means that eventually digging the minerals out of the ground will no longer be required in the vast numbers that currently are occurring and the same batteries you had in your vehicle for the last 10 years will help in the vehicles in the next 10 years.
Reuse, Recycle and have a safer, healthier future for our kids and grandkids.
Infrastructure is imperative! 2022 started with a bang as I looked towards the year with positivity and hope that this year would be better than the last. I work in health and find that the pace that 2021 took drained me of energy and passion for what I was doing, blogging included.
So how was 2022 going to be different? I changed roles and returned to my substantive position working Monday to Friday 9-5. This seemed like a good idea. I then applied to be part of a leadership emerging executive course which would run for 9 months. My application was successful.
I started the course in march of 2022 and to say it has had a profound impact on my thinking and view of the world is not an understatement. 2020 was a year that I had medical issues. 2021 allowed me to find my mojo for my day job again.
2022 was the year I rediscovered the reason I do what I do. The course exposed me to some industry experts in digital health to help challenge my stagnant thinking. It offered a way to unlearn old habits, challenge new ways of thinking and develop my skills as a leader in Digital health.
As part of the course, I was given the opportunity to be part of a project that focused on the delivery of Charging infrastructure to a Hospital District. Those of you who have followed me and supported my blogs would have found I was quiet in 2021.
As part of the project, I had to declare any conflicts of interest and thus my blogging about EVs met these criteria. I then had to make a choice and thus I had to stop blogging for the duration.
Did I stop following what was going on in the world of Electric vehicles? NO!!!!!
I followed along commented where I could on Twitter and linked in and continued to keep track of the great progress being made in the industry.
One of the side benefits of this forced hiatus was the ability to think about my website and my blogs and better plan for 2022. I hope that this year brings with it a better experience for you the reader and for a more collaborative approach.
Infrastructure is imperative! I was lucky enough to find people who were just as passionate about electric vehicles as I. The course asked to have a Project completed by the end of the 9-month time frame. Alongside my colleagues, we worked to deliver the “EV infrastructure transition project” to life.
You see the government has fleet vehicles that currently are mostly petrol and more recently a few hybrids.
An announcement that all fleet vehicles were to transition to electric by 2026 was big news and raised several eyebrows on how to achieve this.
Initially, we thought about the vehicles themselves but quickly realized that infrastructure planning, implementation and strategy were far more important to solve.
The vehicles took care of themselves with the car companies producing the vehicles that could allow ease of purchase. On the flip side, the building that existed and the new proposed building being built did not cater for the most part to the delivery of over 500 vehicles to be charged and housed.
We first took time to understand the areas that we needed to focus on. This included:
How to pay for infrastructure upgrades
What incentives are available to us
Sources of income that could be sorted out to help with the overhead costs of the initial infrastructure builds
Understanding the current locations where fleet vehicles were housed.
What capacity the buildings had with electrical boards
Current number of vehicles
Work done to transition and agreements
This as a starting point opened a lot of questions and very few answers.
We got to work. We organized meetings with the facility managers to better understand the current physical locations. Spoke with finance staff to better understand the costs. Our discussions with Fleet managers helped to get a picture of the complex nature we were facing.
The biggest challenges that the Health District needed to address included
Limited capacity for further electrical load
Locations of current vehicles being unable to support any electrical infrastructure for new electric vehicles
no central management of vehicles exists variability across facilities
The cost of uplift of locations would cost large amounts of dollars above and beyond the currently allocated funds
Limited time to be able to complete infrastructure uplift based on 2026, time frame.
To address the above and to at least begin the process we as a team came up with 4 key strategies that needed to be implemented for the beginning of success to be found.
Central management of fleet vehicles in the health district
Assessment of electrical capacity at all locations
Dedicated allocated funds to address infrastructure and electrical shortfall.
Development of a process to assess future sites for appropriateness of charging infrastructure installation.
These four items would put the health district on a solid trajectory towards success to transition to their 2026 target of all-electric vehicles in the fleet to transition to electric. Infrastructure is imperative!
Infrastructure is imperative! This project taught me a lot about project processes and investigation. It helped to have me build on the knowledge that I have taken from the EV community and apply it in a way I had never considered.
It also opened my eyes to the fact that infrastructure is imperative to the survival, success, and best outcomes of EVs uptake. I have written a number of years ago about the importance of charging infrastructure and it is so important to get this right.
The world is looking for ways to move towards promoting the uptake of EVs. Being part of this project continues to support my efforts to provide good insights to helping all to understand what to consider when choosing EVs.
It has also helped me to realize that complaints about chargers not working, chargers broken and limited in their capability are not good enough. We must do better and be better to truly make the experience seamless.
There is a long road to go, and I know that I have learned a great deal in 2022 and I hope that translates into 2023.
Road Trip. During Christmas of 2022, I decided to do a long road trip with my family to Melbourne. I decided to see how the Tesla charging network and my Model 3 we bought almost 15 months ago would perform on the road.
In preparation for this trip I took time to consider the needs of what might be required. Some of the considerations included the items below.
List of items
I recently backed a “Kickstarter” in which I received a small compact tire compressor. It was designed to be a simple small and competent tire inflater for several purposes including vehicles.
Extra charging cable.
I purchased the blue charging cable from apple that allows for charging at third-party chargers with a bring-your-own cable.
Tire repair kits
A friend of mine mentioned he has used the tire repair kits that plug the hole so you can make it to the next town to have it fixed. I purchased some of these, so I had resources in case this eventuated.
Alcohol-based window cleaner
This was essential to allow for the cleaning of windows due to bug splatter and the removal of bugs from the fender when charging.
Planning the trip
I spent several hours planning the trip not just through the tesla app and vehicle display but through several other applications.
A better Route Finder
This app allowed me to look at the possibilities of charging accommodation and time travelling
This was very handy to find any other charging points that may be available close to the tesla chargers in the case of not being able to charge when tesla chargers might have a long wait.
Allowing the ability to charge at their sites if required.
Allowing the ability to charge at their sites if required.
RACQ Roadside assistance
If an issue arose, I could get assistance if required.
Road Trip. The road trip was planned to start a couple of days before Christmas day, and it would take us 3 days to get there. As it turns out it only took 2 days with long days and lots of driving.
The first leg of the trip started at 3:30 am in the morning, this was intentional as we aimed to miss the Gold Coast Highway morning traffic that is notorious for being horrible and slow. Thankfully we missed this traffic and made good time for our first destination for charging at Maclean.
Charger – Knockrow
Knockrow charger is one of the more picturesque chargers around. We arrived early morning which meant that not many people were within the area. It sits on a river next to a restaurant and just up the road is a small country town post office and general store.
The general store was open, so we got a coffee and something to eat. We then went and sat by the river and had a relaxed time while waiting for the vehicle to finish charging.
The next couple of chargers that we stopped at were similarly placed in nice surroundings, next to vineyards, shopping centres and the like.
As we moved into Victoria after going through NSW, we found that the roads travelled through some of the most open and beautiful landscapes. In contrast to NSW where there are lots of large forests and bushland next to the freeways, in VICTORIA the fields were spotted with trees and large open fields with lots of livestock to be seen.
The stops along the way included places like “Oliver’s” which offers good wholesome healthy selections of food catering to Gluten and dairy-free options.
Model 3 Travelling
Road Trip. Our model 3 is a 2021 build standard range with no FSD or Enhanced Autopilot. So, on a trip down it was great to understand the benefits and disadvantages of this configuration.
First and foremost, range is king. Due to cost when we bought the Model 3, we had not been able to buy a long-range Model 3 and that has always been a question for us
The Model 3 standard range did not skip a beat, it performed as well as expected if not slightly above.
The distance between chargers was not so much that you would arrive almost on 0% if anything I generally arrived with 10-20% of the charge still available.
This surprised me as I had anticipated more issues with distance. So, the query of “Long-Range” versus “Standard Range” did not really matter.
I had a full trunk and frunk load with more in the back seat, so the vehicle was even heavier than usual, and it performed exceptionally well. Range Anxiety with this extra load did not have any impact.
We covered on the drive down almost 1800km on the way down and we charged approximately 6-8 times over the duration.
We arrived in Melbourne and enjoyed a wonderful Christmas with family and friends
Tesla Christmas Present
I have always wanted to understand the benefits, and disadvantages of the Enhanced Autopilot systems so it came as a big surprise to find that Tesla released for 30 days to the ability for all Teslas to experience enhanced Autopilot across the Christmas/New Year period here in Australia.
I was extremely impressed with some aspects and frustrated by others. Of course, I worked out workarounds and streamlined the capabilities attributed to the Enhance autopilot.
The first thing to note was the activation of the Enhanced autopilot. Firstly, entering a destination was necessary for the delivery of the enhanced features. The auto lane change was one exception to this rule as it also worked when in standard autopilot.
The first time I drove it with Enhanced autopilot and turned it on the two blue lines that outlined the lanes on the screen merged into the one leading line in front of the vehicle’s image.
This helped to show its path and guide the car through the navigation. On many occasions, it performed amicably, but on some occasions, it was hard to determine if it would or would not work.
The vehicle found exit and entry points a breeze for the most part with a few small exceptions. It took turns on freeway interchanges extremely well and navigated through traffic with ease.
Where it did find some challenges was the transition from lane to lane. The auto turn was mostly consistent and worked well however it did tend to suggest turning to the right-hand lane often even if there was no reason to do so.
This was above all else the most frustrating thing. On many occasions, I would cancel the suggested upcoming lane change as there was no reason to change the lane.
One of the more unusual behaviours came when I was driving in the right lane and attempting to merge back to the left lane using enhanced autopilot systems functionality. I would indicate to go to the left lane, I found when there was no other vehicle in the left lane ahead the system just would not engage. No matter how much nudging of the steering wheel to confirm lane change the system did not do it.
The results would be the autopilot disengaging, it just continuing in the right lane and the system disregarding the request, or the screen displaying that auto lane change is not available at this time.
Besides these frustrations, overall I was most impressed with where it is at currently. Does it need more work to meet expectations, of course, but it is early stages of development for right-hand drive countries in my opinion and I think Tesla might need to give the system some attention.
I would think that the data they were able to get from all the different vehicles using it over this period might give a clear indication of areas for improvement. Let’s hope so.
The Return Trip
The return trip was again long, and we visited mostly the same superchargers on the way back. Having enhanced autopilot was so much better than autopilot for one specific reason.
I didn’t have to turn it off to change lanes 95% of the time. In the included version of autopilot that comes with all Tesla’s it disengages when trying to change lanes. If no other feature for standard autopilot could be included, it would be this.
We again made it in two days and even though we were not as tired as we would have been driving another vehicle without autopilot. The energy it takes to concentrate on keeping the car between two lines cannot be understated.
Tesla does this extremely well in standard or enhanced autopilot and the level of fatigue does diminish with this capability.
I had a wonderful time driving the Model 3 and I can say without hesitation it is one of the best vehicles I have ever owned.
One last Observation
The Supercharger network needs to grow. Sure, we were lucky not to have to wait at any superchargers along the way but the number of Teslas and electric vehicles we identified on our drive was significant. Australia is only getting to 4-5% of recent purchases being electric, but that is only growing.
Tesla needs to increase their number of chargers, along with other vendors. It is imperative that this happens with great expedience.
With Tesla opening their superchargers to other electric vehicles this will only increase demand and at most charging sites 6 seems to be the maximum on this road trip. That is not enough if more and more Teslas and EVs are coming into the market.
The trip was amazing, the enhanced autopilot was worth experiencing and the fun, family, and memories we made during this time cannot be replaced.
2023 Let’s Get Started!!! I have had a lot of time over the last 12 months to sit back and watch the evolution of the electric vehicle market in Australia start to heat up.
Having been involved with a project last year that asked me to pause my blogging whilst I completed the project, I was able to take stock of what is going to be important to blog about moving forward.
Until now I have been blogging about several things that relate to the tipping point of the ability to move towards electrification, cars and many others things.
It would seem now that that process is well underway, and I need to adapt to this change and now focus on what is important to the people buying the new cars, the evolving landscape of the Australian and global vehicle uptake and the long-term views of what is coming.
Of course, I am a self-proclaimed Tesla fanboy so I will continue to write about tesla where I believe there is news to share. Just like I wrote about 2022 would be the year of the Model Y I will continue to write about future trends with tesla and the cyber truck especially.
I am also looking at my website to uplift it to be more user-friendly and provide information and access to resources that are relevant to anyone who needs a one-stop place to discover the things that are important when starting out trying to understand what differences there are for electric vehicles to consider when making that shift.
As part of this moving change that I am about to embark on I am always open to collaboration, working with the EV community to continue to grow the conversation, evolve the thinking and look towards the future that we leave behind for our children.
The beginning of my blogging will come in early February.
2023 Let’s Get Started!!! So, keep an eye out and I hope you enjoy my thinking and perspective on the future of the electric vehicle.