Tesla CEO Musk Trumpets Upcoming Suspension and Autopilot Upgrades

Roberto Baldwin
·3-min read
Photo credit: Brad Fick - Car and Driver
Photo credit: Brad Fick - Car and Driver

From Car and Driver

  • Elon Musk says Model S and Model X will soon get suspension upgrades via an over-the-air update.

  • The Tesla CEO also tweeted that the rewrite of the Autopilot software will be available as a limited public release in six to 10 weeks.

  • The news appears to be in response to our just-published test of the Model S's Cheetah mode, with Musk saying Tesla is working on a substantial upgrade to ride performance.

Owning a Tesla means that you can expect some sort of update to your vehicle being delivered over-the-air on a regular basis. Sometimes those are announced by Tesla, but most of the time it seems like your best bet to see what's coming for your car is to see what CEO Elon Musk tweets. Today, he tweeted that the Model S and X will soon get a suspension upgrade and that the Autopilot rewrite is close to being done.

In a reply to a tweet about an article that cites Car and Driver's test of the new Cheetah mode on the Model S, Musk said that an over-the-air update will soon be sent to Model X and Model S vehicles that would upgrade how the air suspension system works. Presumably to make the Model S faster than what we found in our testing.

According to Musk, the upgrade will improve performance, handling, and ride comfort. That's a welcome addition to any vehicle, and because the air suspension is controlled by the vehicle's operating system, it can be digitally upgraded.

The upgrade also adds a user-controlled ability to adjust ride height and damping, set to a certain geographic area. This is helpful if, for example, your driveway requires you to raise the height of your vehicle or you live on a dirt road. You can set the suspension once and then, each time you arrive within that area, the vehicle will automatically adjust the suspension.

Tesla did start rolling out an upgrade last week to Model X and Model S vehicles that supports the location-based suspension feature with new suspension controls. If you don't already have it on your vehicle, it’s coming.

In Musk's barrage of tweets today, he also mentioned that the newly rewritten Autopilot system will get a limited public release in six to 10 weeks. Tesla took on rewriting the code for its vehicles. The CEO says that this new system is a fundamental architectural rewrite and that it can slow down or steer around potholes. So that's also something to look forward to for Tesla owners.

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