Tesla’s Exaggerated Range Estimates

Steve Stecklow and Norihiko Shirouzu, reporting for Reuters:

Tesla years ago began exaggerating its vehicles’ potential driving distance — by rigging their range-estimating software. The company decided about a decade ago, for marketing purposes, to write algorithms for its range meter that would show drivers “rosy” projections for the distance it could travel on a full battery, according to a person familiar with an early design of the software for its in-dash readouts.

Then, when the battery fell below 50% of its maximum charge, the algorithm would show drivers more realistic projections for their remaining driving range, this person said. To prevent drivers from getting stranded as their predicted range started declining more quickly, Teslas were designed with a “safety buffer,” allowing about 15 miles (24 km) of additional range even after the dash readout showed an empty battery, the source said.

The directive to present the optimistic range estimates came from Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk, this person said. “Elon wanted to show good range numbers when fully charged,” the person said, adding: “When you buy a car off the lot seeing 350-mile, 400-mile range, it makes you feel good.”

This is not an “everyone does” situation:

Jonathan Elfalan, vehicle testing director for the automotive website Edmunds.com, reached a similar conclusion to Pannone after an extensive examination of vehicles from Tesla and other major automakers, including Ford, General Motors, Hyundai and Porsche. All five Tesla models tested by Edmunds failed to achieve their advertised range, the website reported in February 2021. All but one of 10 other models from other manufacturers exceeded their advertised range.

Starting to pick up a pattern with this guy Musk.

Thursday, 27 July 2023