What other features would you want on an S?

Looking at the nice photo of the full glass roof (go to, click on "Model S", click on "Learn More ->" just above and to the right of "300 Miles per charge") made me wonder as others have: will it be too hot? Can you see the information on the touchscreen?

How will you "close" the view above?
Is switchable glass possible for automotive and curved glass applications? (LCD built in to the glass makes it electrically controllable to be clear vs. "frosted" (translucent) or "mirror" (opaque).

If it's possible, there would be no significant weight or volume difference from standard glass. Instant control from the dash. (Fresh air is done the old fashioned way...)

That's (1) for me.
While I'm brainstorming (fantasizing?), someday I'd like to see some other electronic features:
(2) How does Google Maps get their traffic information? Internet connected cars could easily periodically report their position and average speed for wherever they are, thus enabling intelligent re-routing of other connected cars around traffic, whatever the cause.

(3) I'm used to backup cameras. What I'd really like is a simulated view of my car seen from above, showing all the cars nearby. This might be done with front, back and side cameras and real-time stitching, or with ultrasonic or laser scanning around the car. The view would show on a display, preferably one that can be seen easily while driving. No need to look over your shoulder as you're about to cut someone off with a lane change when you already know they're there. Not a replacement for good driving, but nice.

(4) Skype application in the car. Mobile ISPs don't like it, but it would be nice.

(5) Social mode: detect other nearby cars with local connectivity (Bluetooth auto-pairing? Wireless access point from your car to others?) and talk to them over your Bluetooth mike and speakers! "Man, did you see that guy cut off the ambulance!" "Do you know any good restaurants around here?" "Do you know what's causing this traffic?" "How 'bout them Yankees?" :) "Nice day!" "I like the color of your Tesla S - wanna get a cup of coffee?" It would make driving more like walking with others in public - more personable. But you could just shut it off!

I'm sure many of you have ideas, too!

I don't want Tesla Motors to add solar panels to the Model S as its too late at this point, however, there maybe a market for someone to come up with super efficient solar panels that can inlay under the pano roof for trickle charges for those who need to leave the car parked at say the airport for a month or more? Maybe panels are not efficient enough today for this but in a couple years?

Brian H | April 15, 2012 new

Yep; TM needs to add a 0 to the HD. Storage is getting sinfully cheap; there's no reason to skimp.

That small HD might actually cost more than larger one very soon: Nobody just makes disks that small, so you need pay extra to get them. Larger disk might be cheaper for Tesla too in long run (disk size stays relevant).

Roof solar has been beat to death here. It's a tiny trickle charge, available only when out in the sun, and VERY expensive hardware, compared to any other source of watts. Just a showpiece hook for those who don't grok arithmetic.

I would like to see a height adjustable rear seat, one you could lower 1 to 2 inches, or an optional fixed lower rear seat. I'm wondering how much Model S' minimal rear seat headroom will discourage would be luxury car buyers after the first wave of enthusiasts like us is exhausted.

Someone commented that having the headrests in on the rear seats improved clearance considerably, even for quite tall passengers. Something to do with the slope of the roof and positioning, I guess.

I'd like an app that records what's seen on the backup camera - and any other cameras installed - into memory. The app would be active only when the car is parked, and could be programmed to record only when motion is detected. (EdG)

I love this idea. That makes it quite likely that you can discern the number plate of a car that was parking next to you, when you discover a new ding or scratch. Once you have a suspect, it's easy for the insurance to prove that the suspect was actually the one that hit your Model S' paint just a little too hard.

FYI... The Leaf has a small solar panel on the roof at the back to help keep the battery topped up... Interesting idea! (CurrieG)

This question keeps popping up in these forums. Here are some threads that may be worth reading:

To summarize: The opinion here in the Tesla forum is that solar panels (as can be found on the Fisker Karma) are merely for coolness and (pseudo) green image. The amount of electricity generated by a photo voltaic area as small as the roof and/or bonnet of a passenger car is so small, that a) it is not really good for anything except maybe running an additional fan while the car is sitting in the sun, and b) if you want to run an additional fan you could as well draw the power from the main battery which would not be affected much. Photo voltaic cells need to be produced, integrated into the car's electricity, and maintained -- at the current state of technology, it does not seem worth the cost and trouble.

There are way too many posts to read through. Would someone more diligent than myself tell me if anyone has suggested a sophisticated on board wireless diagnostic system to problem solve mechanical and especially electronic maintenance problems from afar.

I'd like to see this Take a hikeflight

~ Prash.

Great video embedded there. Pretty funny.

This one would be a much more appropriate complement to your Model S:

You know what I want? I want two water cannons in the front end. Then when I pull up behind some polluter, I can clean his exhaust up some so I don't have to smell him.

Heated and cooled seats, Video dvd player in trunk seats, Front and rear cameras for parking, Home link, folding mirrors, Charging ports on both sides of car, Seat massage option,All wheel drive, Notice to pick options on my model S signature car.

I'll second the charging ports on both sides.

I would also like the charger on both sides. An auto eject of the charger when you start the car would be nice as well. I'm a volunteer on my towns fire department and all of our trucks have this for the shoreline. It is massively convenient when you are in a bit of a rush.

As to the release of the SDK, I have to assume it is a matter of time before that comes out. I'll be at the NYC reservation holders event this Sunday and will ask about that. Minimum I would like to understand what can and can't be managed via a user. I have a hope there are simple things a non-coder can do, as well as something for people like me who can code to some extent, but not well enough that anyone would pay me for my work.

I would love to know if the HD is SD or a more traditional disk drive. I hope it is SD because a, fewer moving parts are always good and b, then it can be swapped out for a higher capacity unit at a later date. Basically, it would make the Model S a Mac Book Air on some serious steroids!

I'll miss my cooled seats from my Lexus HS, but given the S's ability to self cool (at least we assume, via an app on the openers handheld device) it is probably not really needed.

Heated seats, indeed, very comfortable in winter according to my wife :-)

120 volt 15 amp output in frunk or plug in charging port adapter can be very usefull to some.

Heated seats are really good for those of us with bad backs. In hot climate, cooled seats are great because although the car can be pre cooled, you get sweaty under the thighs in fairly short order on a long drive.

I am going to lose points on this one. I prefer back-up sensors over cameras! Yes, they are a ugly (not as ugly as a big dent) and old school. The rear visibility in the “S” is not outstanding , especially at night, for the few of us who parallel park.

Here's the trick that means you only have to see the rear tire of the car you start "beside" (about a yard away).
1. When your rear wheel is even with the other car's, cut in hard, and continue moving.
2. When your front wheel passes the same wheel, cut back hard. Stop when you reach the curb; you're perfectly parked.

It takes a while to get over the nervousness of your car's nose just clearing the other car's rear by a few inches, but it works with every size from mini to delivery van to V8 monster.

Brian H.


I like petero's suggestion as well, not for parallel parking but for all the other objects you might bump into. I have trouble judging a backup camera's distance from the object, but the audible "beep" the get's faster as you get closer then the flatline sound when you are just too close is perfect for me. Maybe with time I will get used to the backup camera as well and I am just currently so used to the backup sensors in my Rav4. Time will tell.

There's a 1.5 in Brian H parallel park advice:

Aim your car rear to only slightly off to car behind you at the curb side. (the amount do you say behind your rear wheels determines how much off you need to aim, if they are at the very corner of the car, then there is almost zero aiming correction to make).

I have seen far too many cars making that "cut in hard" way too hard and ending up to the curb. If your car fits to the opening at all you don't need to turn much (but you still need to do it sharply, if the space is tight).

Anyway, it is good to just plain practice and learn the dimensions of your car until you know exactly where they are. Brian H advice might not work if you have very long nose at the car (you hit the car if front of you if you turn in too early), or you leave big gap in there if there is almost no nose. Model S has very round nose which helps avoiding the hit.

Your English has failed you (us) here; "Aim only slightly off to car behind your rear wheels determines ..." is grammatically and syntactically incomprehensible. What is "off"? Why two verbs in the sentence? Pls try again ...

As for the nose clearance, the distance between front wheels and bumper is the only variable, and the car geometry tends to compensate for even that (long wheelbase = larger turning circle, etc.) In any case, a few practice 'runs' will give the right degree of "cutting" needed for a given car.

Fitting in small spaces is part of the benefit, btw. It's amazing how little space is needed with the "hard cut".

I was sitting in a friends Merc last week. This car parked itself. It scanned the area, distance between the cars, etc and parked it smootly between the car.
Since Tesla and Daimler are cooperating, perhaps this would be a feature to think about ...

Brian H, may I suggest that you teach yourself some Finnish, such that you can properly explain to Timo what you think he might have missed.

off target. Don't aim directly to the front of the other car. Slightly as in don't aim at the curb either. Miss the exact center from the curb side. I realize I have left some words out again...

"to only slightly off to car behind your rear wheels determines"

I don't see that sentence in my writing though. That's mixture of two different sentences. Did your eyes jump the line?

Must have been a display glitch; my quote was copy-pasted.

As for "aiming", properly done, no aiming is necessary. Parallel to the car beside, till rear wheels align, cut in, then cut back when front wheels reach the same point.

So "aiming off" made no sense to me.

How do you define "cut in"? If your car is long one with a very tight turning circle and you don't do that aiming you easily end up at the curb by just turning. Also hitting the other car (front one) is actually quite likely if the turning circle is very small. You need to do a bit more than just use the wheels as reference points. Some Mercs turn on a dime, for car of their size they are very agile, and Model S looks like it too can turn very sharply (turning circle is just 37 ft based on specs, which is rather small for car that has 116.5 inch wheelbase).

Storage compartment under the rear seat (or seats).

The floor is flat, there are no parts I can think of in that space. It should be large enough to fit my laptop bag plus some. That would work to get all these things that collect on the floor and on my seats now. I know mine is not the first request for this great idea.

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