Over-the-air updates to the rescue!
Elon Musk is promising to fix the problems with the Model 3’s braking performance, after Consumer Reports – a similar publication to Choice – returned poor results in its braking tests, and dubbed the car ‘not good enough to recommend’.
During testing, Consumer Reports discovered “flaws – big flaws” with the ‘affordable’ Model 3’s brakes. The test car CR used took 152 feet (46.3m) to stop from 60mph (97km/h), further than a Ford F-150 took in the same test.
The first test car stopped in 130ft (39.6m) first time around, before the stopping distance blew out, and couldn’t be replicated after letting the brakes cool. After the first car struggled, Consumer Reports replicated the tests on a second and found the same results.
“In our tests of both Model 3 samples, the stopping distances were much longer than the stopping distances we recorded on other Teslas and other cars in this class,” the Consumer Reports article said. Car & Driver noted similar issues in its testing of the car.
The publication also found the large central touchscreen distracting, and noted lots of wind noise and a poor ride in the rear seats.
In response to these findings, Elon Musk said the braking issues could be fixed with an over-the-air firmware update.
“With further refinement, we can improve braking distance beyond initial specs,” Musk said using his preferred soapbox, Twitter. “Tesla won’t stop until Model 3 has better braking than any remotely comparable car.”
Although over-the-air updates can’t change the physical braking hardware (duh!), Tesla could tweak the systems controlling the brakes – think ABS – remotely.
Musk also said the car used for testing was an early production car, and suggested more recent deliveries will have improved rear-seat refinement.
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