Published on August 20th, 2013 | by James Ayre


Tesla Model S Firmware Update Brings Improved Sleep Mode, Improved Creep, Tow Mode, & More

August 20th, 2013 by  

Tesla’s newest firmware update for the Model S is bringing with it some notable improvements — Firmware 5.0 introduces an improved sleep mode, a Tow Mode, the ability to connect to WiFi networks and to tether, a Screen Cleaning Mode, an improved “creep performance,” enhancements to the mapping program, and the option to control radio presets with steering-wheel controls.

The most notable of the Tesla Model S updates is no doubt the one made to the “Improved Power Management When Not In Use” — also known as the “sleep mode.” The update is said to address the “vampire loss” that the Model S experienced while turned off — “vampire loss” referring to the energy lost while the car was turned “off.” Reports state that the new update reduces the losses by about 50–70%. There’s a trade-off for this reduced energy loss, though, a slightly longer start-up time for some of the car’s functions — now it will take roughly 10 seconds, after the car door has been opened, for some of the Model S’s systems to wake-up and be ready to go.

Image Credit: Tesla Motors

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's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy. You can follow his work on Google+.

  • Marion Meads

    The update is indeed a compromise. Tesla or the Tesla fans have defended that the next firmware update should reduce the losses by 99%, here we have 50%-70% reduction. It is a significant reduction, but what remains is still significantly big. Instead of bleeding 4.5 kWh/day, we are now bleeding 2.25 kWh/day!

    And now there is a 10-second delay. Let us not have some amnesia here. If I remember correctly, the first attempts at fixing the vampire losses resulted in also a boot-up delay, and the Tesla owners didn’t like it, so Tesla recalled the updates. And now it seems to me that this is the same type of firmware update with the delay is reintroduced again. Why don’t they have the instant boot-up technology for their on-board computers? Extra high price demands extraordinary performance and extraordinary efficiency.

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