Thanks to @turo I'm renting a #TeslaModel3 during my visit to Silicon Valley - certainly a different experience than traditional #carrental agencies #future #zeroemission #electriccars
Gone to Tesla's HQ in Fremont, California to try the supercharging there. It's supposed to be much faster than before.
I had hoped the Model 3 would charge at the new rate but it didn't happen
I thought that other Tesla owners at Tesla HQ would be a bit more social when their cars were charging but everyone just sat in their car
Over the air software update is a straightforward way of keeping cars maintained without having to take it back to the dealer
Software update on the model 3 worked fine. What new features did it bring?
Was driving on freeway at 65mph in the model 3 when I noticed another model 3 passing by me. The driver was reading a book and wasn't holding the steering wheel (I presume she was using autopilot with autosteer) - quite concerning to see this behaviour #RoadSafety #driving
The giant iPad style touchscreen on the Model 3 is fun to use at times but I feel it's quite bad design if you have to take your eyes off the road for quite a while just to change the direction of the airflow
Tesla supercharging is fast but not that quick, at least when you compare with filling up your car's petrol tank. When charging your #ElectricCar takes only 5 minutes, that's when they will be of interest to many drivers, imho
So charging done. This is my estimated range. It's a dual motor Model 3. If you drive on the freeway and have to pass slower vehicles, using the acceleration then range drops rather quickly.
Some initial thoughts after living with the model 3 for a few days
As a driver of an #ElectricCar one has to be mindful that pedestrians and cyclists might not hear you. Also for those with a bad back, the ride quality in the Model 3 is brilliant
The sound quality from the model 3 audio system is incredible. You will also see on the main screen the surrounding vehicles picked up from one of the 8 built in cameras on the car.
Ooh I get to try out navigate on autopilot with my Tesla model 3
I had the most alarming experience whilst driving my Tesla Model 3 on the freeway tonight.
After last night's experience, it's made me think hard about "predictability" of software in our daily lives. It's not acceptable for a car travelling on autopilot and autosteer to have its software "crash" whilst the car is doing 65mph (or any speed)
So I tried #NavigateOnAutoPilot on the #TeslaModel3 - It gives you a glimpse into a possible future where one day #selfdrivingcars might seem perfectly normal
One issue with the #teslamodel3 is the thickness of the A pillars - it reduces visibility especially in an urban environment and makes it harder to spot cyclists and pedestrians. #design #roadsafety
I tried #NavigateOnAutoPilot again, this time in San Francisco. This feature is currently a beta, so doesn't work as well as it could. I think the sudden braking on the exit ramp from the freeway could cause problems for drivers behind me #selfdrivingcars #AI #teslamodel3
Whilst the acceleration and range of the #Teslamodel3 are impressive, there are various details in terms of basic design that are quite frustrating, especially given how much the car costs
In my testing of the #Teslamodel3 I got less than the estimated range but still very good given I was mostly driving on the freeway
One of the best things about #electriccars and the #teslamodel3 in particular is the fact that you get more space as there is no engine and related components
So I did find that at least once a day when putting the #TeslaModel3 into reverse, the backup camera view on the central touchscreen was just showing a black screen instead of the actual view. So many aspects of the car feel like an unfinished product.
So what can the #TeslaModel3 see and do when it's on #Autopilot with #autosteer? On this occasion, it worked very well, and illustrates the advances in #computervision and #NeuralNetworks
One thing that sets the #TeslaModel3 (even though this isn't the fastest model) apart from other cars is the acceleration. It really is astonishing to experience, even if you have driven performance cars in the past. I found it particularly useful when merging onto the freeway.
The implementation of blind spot warnings when changing lanes is quite bad in the #TeslaModel3 - forces you to look at the screen and away from the wing mirrors
I found many #Tesla owners in California told me they trusted #Autopilot 100%, and they would read books, write emails on their laptop or even close their eyes for a micro nap. Even as a driver assistance tool, it's not always great. We over estimate what technology can do.
The interior looks good, but the elimination of almost all the buttons from the #TeslaModel3, with a relatively limited voice interface, means that having to control the car's functions using menus from the giant touchscreen could make the drive more dangerous cc: @Acuity_Design
I tried #Autopilot with the #Teslamodel3 in a number of different scenarios, and stop start traffic (up to say 25mph) on the freeway seemed to be the safest use case. However, even in that scenario, the driver still needs to be aware of hazards.
As an electric car, I think the combination of the performance, range and supercharger network in California make the #TeslaModel3 a very good proposition, especially if you spend most of your driving on the freeway.
Would I recommend the #TeslaModel3 to those looking for an electric car? Not entirely. I think there are many flaws, especially with the software, and at times, it feels like a product that is a work in progress. It's for early adopters at the moment, imho.
I can recommend @turo though. It was a great customer experience and the concept of AirBnB for cars makes a refreshing alternative to getting a rental car at the airport.
Here's an example of the cars available at SFO in the lot. Bear in mind that on the website, there is a very wide range of owner's vehicles of every size and budget
So I've got another #Tesla #Model3, and curious to try out the latest software update that has improved #navigateonautopilot and allegedly takes us further on the path towards #SelfDrivingCars
Using Autopilot once you're off the interstate is not as great as you might think. I still think human drivers can spot hazards better than the car's sensors.
I think one of the dangers of #NavigateOnAutopilot is the moment when the car needs the human driver to take back control of the car and driver isn't paying attention or isn't ready
Finding a supercharger in the US is very easy, day or night. A shame that the reversing camera doesn't even have a cover to keep the lens clean at all times, even when raining. #TeslaModel3
The speed of supercharging is what makes driving a Tesla a unique experience in terms of #electriccars but you also have to be careful in terms of how you charge the battery
So #Tesla's update to #NavigateOnAutopilot allows the car to change lanes WITHOUT needing confirmation from the driver. My testing whilst en route to NYC generated unexpected results. The software definitely needs much more work. #TeslaModel3
I took the #TeslaModel3 off Autopilot to go through the toll booth but then resumed #Autopilot shortly afterwards. Whilst there are occasions when the software drives the car quite safely, there are also occasions when it doesn't feel that safe.
I think that car companies (not just Tesla) that offer driver assistance technology should be legally obligated to provide driver training when the car is purchased, training that enables the owner to understand how it exactly how it works and the limitations of the technology.
So many cars have front and rear parking sensors that beep to let you know how close you are to other vehicles when parking, but Tesla cars also tell you exactly how close you are in terms of showing the exact distance to you
The more I test #Autopilot on the #TeslaModel3, the more I find reasons not to trust it. My hands were lightly holding the steering wheel when the car behaved strangely, so I was able to take back control. However, I've seen #Tesla drivers on the road with no hands on the wheel.
So I tried #Autopilot whilst in Manhattan when it was raining and dark. Did the #TeslaModel3 safely navigate the Big Apple?
I'm not convinced that the option for the driver to cancel the car's decision to initiate a lane change is presented in the best way via the touch screen. Maybe the car should actually say "I'm about to change lanes. Say no to cancel" and then wait a few seconds for you to reply?
The #TeslaModel3 Performance edition offers incredible acceleration (0-60 in 3.5 seconds) and because of the dual motors providing all wheel drive, it feels very safe even on wet roads. Alas, Autopilot with autosteer frequently feels unsafe.
#NavigateOnAutoPilot can change lanes without needing confirmation from the driver. However, in places like New Jersey, where other drivers behave aggressively and the distance between cars is short, the software fails in the real world, as it's too slow to change lane.
It's always risky when merging onto fast moving interstates and requires the driver to pay attention to reduce the risk of an accident. Alas, it didn't feel like this #TeslaModel3 was paying attention to the surroundings when it was driving with #NavigateOnAutopilot
Another situation where giving more control from human driver to the car and its software increased the risk of an accident. Pay attention to the right wing mirror, the truck that was following me and the left hand side of the screen and how the #TeslaModel3 exits the interstate
I wanted to see how "dog mode" on the #TeslaModel3 worked. What's really interesting is that this feature was requested by a Twitter user, and Tesla developed it and pushed it to users with a software update
Trying out "sentry mode" in the #TeslaModel3 which was also a new feature pushed to cars as part of a recent software update. Essentially, after purchase, your car is continually getting new features. Better than having to buy a new car every few years to get latest features.
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