Page 33 - ElectriCar Magazine
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  “EPA Estimated 315 Mile Range” “18,650 Cylindrical Cells” “Twice The Energy Density”
According to Elon Musk, the Model S was designed to be a computer on wheels: “We really designed the Model S to be a very sophisticated computer on wheels. Tesla is a software company as much as it is a hardware company. A huge part of Tesla is a Silicon Valley software company. We view this the same as updating your phone or your laptop. Full autonomy is a software limitation: The hardware exists to create full autonomy, so it’s really about developing advanced, narrow AI on which the car operates.
The instrument panel is a 12.3-inch liquid-crystal display electronic instrument cluster that indicates speed, power usage, charge level, estimated range and active gear, as well as navigation directions. The gear selector can be set to drive, neutral, reverse, and park. The infotainment control touchscreen is a 17-inch multi-touch panel divided into four areas. A top line displays status symbols and provides shortcuts to Charging, HomeLink, Driver Profiles, vehicle information and Bluetooth. The second line provides access to several apps including Media, Nav, Energy, Web, Camera and Phone. The central main viewing area displays the two active apps, subdivided into upper and lower areas. At the bottom is access to various controls and settings for the vehicle such as doors, locks and lights as well as temperature controls and a secondary volume control.
The instrument cluster and the infotainment panel are driven by separate Nvidia Tegra 3 3D Visual Computing
JUNE 2020
Modules until mid 2018. Tesla was the first company to ship this technology. The Tegra “System on a Chip” integrates eight specialized processors, including a multicore ARM CPU, a GPU, and dedicated audio, video and image processors. Nvidia claimed that it consumes two percent of the energy of a typical CPU.
The navigation system uses GPS and a mix of Garmin and Google Maps route guidance. The map display on the 17 inch screen requires a constant Internet connection, so navigation is limited in areas without mobile network coverage. The Nav on the instrument panel is loaded on the car and does not need Internet access to function.
Enthusiasts have developed the Open Vehicle Monitoring System which allows the owner to remotely observe a variety of different vehicle operating parameters, such as battery state of charge, typically using a smartphone. Some switchgear used are Mercedes parts, such as window switches, cruise control lever, and drive selector.
According to Elon Musk, the Model S runs on the open- source Linux operating system. In 2014, Autoblog reported that Tesla Models S owners had determined via the car’s combined diagnostics and Ethernet port that a system controlling the central touchscreen is connected to the car’s internal Ethernet.
All versions of the Model S have the same body and normally seat five passengers. An optional folding third row becomes a rear-facing two-place child seat with a five-point harness. The 7-passenger capacity afforded by this option is larger than any other electric vehicle, though not really the same as a full-size SUV that seats 7 adults. The two extra seats are only for children over 37 inches tall and weighing between 35 to 77 lbs, which is described as “a narrow size range. The seats fold away under the rear cargo area, which Consumer Reports said is a “cumbersome and awkward” operation, though for the third row seats are “useful for occasional extra passengers when your kids bring friends along”, provided the driver had planned ahead and left the cargo area empty. Though the rear-seat option includes a stronger rear bumper, the magazine also said that seating behind the rear axle on the Model S, like any third-row seat, is an additional risk in severe rear impacts, though these are relatively rare.
Cargo space is available under the front hood, which Tesla calls the “frunk”. In 2014, the upgraded Model S P85D, D for dual, was introduced. The upgraded version has two electric motors, one driving the rear wheels as in prior versions, and one driving the front wheels. The dual motor version will be available also for the basic 85 kWh version. The rear wheel drive version of the P85 was removed, and the dual motor option was not available for the 60 kWh version.
The battery and drive unit are covered for eight years or 125,000 miles for the 60 kWh base model, or eight years and unlimited distance for all 70 and 85 kWh models. The unconditional battery warranty covers everything except deliberate damage, even including user error. However, loss of battery capacity over time or usage is not covered under warranty.
Tesla’s LithiumIon batteries contain small amounts of nickel and cobalt, the extraction and refining of which has been identified by the EPA as having a high potential for environmental impact due to the toxicity of the refining processes. Tesla claims to recycle all the battery packs that are returned to the company, and is optimistic that its Gigafactory 1, once fully operational, will be capable of recycling a
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