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Radar Detector in Model S

With the kind of speed the Model S has, does anyone have experience in adding a
Radar Detector? Does Tesla have an option to integrate into 17 inch monitor?

@robert27 - did you take any pictures of the install? Was the nose difficult to remove?

Can someone who has simply mounted a radar detector on the windshield (suction cup) or visor (clip) please verify that this works?

I have read elsewhere that the IR-blocking coating used in the windshield blocks lidar, but I would not think that K band (24.05 - 24.35 GHz) or Ka band (34.2 - 35.2 GHz) radar signals would be affected by this.

Thanks in advance!

I did not remove the nose cone. You can access just behind it--the frame which is a great mounting point by removing the front container and some simple trim. I'm a little hesitant to post pics on this site--they are awesome, but you have to appreciate the context. Some might get upset, even without the blood. Hey, I'm a surgeon and I love a good dissection. The organization is phenomenal. Lets just say that my years of restoration work on the '96 p38 easily prepared me for this.

Robert27 - I am going to be doing this soon. Detector should be here at the end of the week.

Would really appreciate seeing the photos. Can you shoot me an email - Aaron at


Aaron, no problem.

Robert 27

This is my first time participating on a blog so forgive me if I am not following proper form. I just had Model S delivered this week and am scheduled to install a radar detector tomorrow in New York area with the guy who has been installing them in all my cars for the past 15 years. If you can forward any pictures or photos that may help my installer, I would appreciate it. Is the Escort 9500ci better than the K 40 RL 360 I ?
Thanks for your help.

Radar detector is à easy add-on that should become standard on model S


I don't think anyone will squawk if you post the pictures here. Do others disagree?

Robert27 Heck Yeah, I agree. The pictures would be awesome, and very useful for other installers.

PS. @timo, someone else already said it, but the legal reason that we can use radar detectors in this country is that the government determined that the airwaves were the property of "the people". And while we regulate who can transmit, which is a practical necessity to avoid radio interference on every channel, we do not regulate nor limit American's right to "listen" to any frequency they bloody well choose to. If someone is going to blast a radio transmission through your house our car, you have the right to receive it. That sounds fair to me.

So, to allow for such things as paid satellite TV services, or military communications, some transmissions are scrambled and encrypted. We DO have laws forbidding us from hacking or unscrambling someone else's locked transmission, but we can listen to the encrypted version all day long if we choose.

Radar detectors fell into this legal framework as soon as radar speed enforcement was invented. If the police transmit, we are allowed to receive. It's not about a right to evade speeding tickets, it's about a pre-existing right to access the public airwaves.

What IS, therefore, illegal in the US is "jammers" which confound the police equipment by transmitting back unintelligible signals that overwhelm their equipment. We cannot transmit legally. However, people now sell "passive" scramblers for laser "Lidar", which (in the product's claims) reflect and scatter the laser signal and prevent a good speed determination. I'm not sure if these work, but they are legal because they do not transmit any new RF energy, just reflect.

Next argument, Timo, is not a justification for speeding, but a gripe. I commit just one legal infraction on the roads. I speed. I'm a driver who signals ever lane change. Who drives in the right except to pass (rare in the USA). I come to full stops, observe all signs, don't follow to close, wait my turn, etc, etc. However, when conditions permit, I speed. Why is it that there is almost no enforcement for ANY of the other driving infractions? I've not heard of people get tickets for bad lane changes, no turn signals, driving in the left lanes, driving outside their lane...nothing. Why? They've invented a machine to measure speed and make it hold up in a trial - so that's what they enforce. Police constantly set up "speed traps". When have you ever seen a "lane change no signal" trap, or such? This is not fair enforcement. PS, yes alcohol and parking are also enforced, but those are not driving infractions.

Also, our speed limits were made 55mph (88kph) by Reagan to SAVE FUEL, but were subsequently raised in many states back to 65 because people fought back. Is the fuel saving argument not moot with the Model S?

@rd_redford I mounted a radar detector and dashcam to the rearview mirror stalk. The radar detection seems fine, though I haven't picked up any LIDAR yet to verify if it makes it through the windsheild (I suspect it doesn't). Incidentally, if you pop off the plastic housing on the mirror stalk there is a wiring harness with switched 12V + (red) and - (black)that I tapped into to avoid having to run the wires down to the fusebox or under the dash. The plastic housing separates into 2 pieces if you pull/pry them apart.
pictures here -

Derek, it was Nixon that started 55 mph, Reagan got rid of it.

As someone who has to drive in DC and VA a fair amount (I believe they are the *only* two places where radar detectors are illegal in US), I would be happy if we could just run trapster (or functional equivalent) as an app. I've only had my MS for 6 days (and 500 grinning miles), so if anyone has had time to figure out how to get those audio warnings relayed to the speakers, I would appreciate that. It's also pretty convenient to have a constant reminder of what the posted speed limit is, and when tolls are coming up since I have to wave my EZPASS out the window for a while longer.

@cb9 - If you're running on an iPhone, you can hear the warnings through the car's audio if you select your iPhone as the audio source. Of course that does limit your listening options to the music (stored or via streaming apps) on your phone. (I'm not familiar with Androids.)

Thanks, Paul, I do have an iPhone, so that'll work some of the time, which is better than none.

@ Derek
@ Mel

I believe that it was under the Jimmy Carter administration that the national 55 speed limit was instigated...not Nixon or Reagan.

It really wasn't successful as the commerical (diesel) vehicles were not "geared" to run economically at that speed...too slow for top gear(s)and to high for lower gear(s). I know for a fact as I was driving a private coach (old Trailways Silver Eagle) during those years with a four speed manual...55 was too high for third and too low for fourth.

I am looking to install the K40 as early as Friday and also would love to see some photo's of that install or get any and all information you have on your install into the Model S!

@Mel - might be able to conceal the radar detector behind nosecone controlled and concealed in the new CCI

Nixon signed the National Maximum Speed Law in January 1974. I remember him asking us to turn our household heat down to 68 degrees around the same time.

Some states revolted with work-arounds for the 55mph limit around 1986 and, as a result, were threatened with a loss of federal funding.

A temporary trial of increased speeds limits was allowed in a few states in 1987.

The repeal of National Speed Limits occured in November of 1995.

Meanwhile, my Valentine One will not work in my Model S. I sure miss it.

Anyone have an update to this thread. I am looking at getting a detector.

There is no way to integrate a detector into the touchscreen.

The metallic heat shield in the windshield glass will reduce the effectiveness of a windshield mounted radar detector. However, reports from users of the Passport 9500IX, indicate that it is still effective, though at a reduced level of sensitivity. may be of interest to you.


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