During the summer, Tesla took its S3XY lineup to Wanaka, New Zealand, to continue winter testing all year round. During those winter tests, Tesla took the Model Y’s track mode out for a spin on Wanaka’s snowy roads.
Wanaka is a small town in the Otago region of the South Island of New Zealand. It is surrounded by mountains of the Southern Alps and is known for its outdoor recreation, including skiing or just leisurely walking past the stunning views. Winter in Wanaka runs from June through the end of August, with an average temperature of 10°C.
Tesla Model Y Track Mode Winter Test
Tesla Model Y Performance owners have been waiting for Track Mode for a long time. Musk announced Track Mode for the Model Y Performance back in 2020, and it took some time before it was officially rolled out.
Tesla released Track Mode for the Model Y Performance during its 2022 Holiday Update. With Track Mode, Model Y Performance owners can save up to 20 driving profiles specific to a different driving scenario or track.
Tesla tested the Model Y’s Track Mode in Wanaka. The Tesla team worked hard on the feature, ensuring it is both fun and safe for Model Y drivers.
“We’re out here in New Zealand, working on Model Y Track Mode, a new development for the Model Y Performance package. So this is full oversteer. All you drifter guys are going to love this kind of setting because as soon s you just tip out, you can just rotate the car around and do pretty wild maneuvers,” said JD Price from Tesla’s testing team.
Winter Tests for the S3XY Lineup
Tesla tested all S3XY vehicles in Wanaka while it was summer in California. The team tested the cars and worked with Tesla’s team in California on software improvements for them. With Tesla’s unique software structure, the Wanaka team could test updates as soon as the California team rolled them out.
“It’s super cool to talk to people in California, send the update halfway across the world [and then] you go on top of a mountain [and] test their update. That’s something I’ve never experienced before,” said one member of the Tesla testing team.
Another member of the Wanaka team mentioned that they go to different places to test the S3XY lineup so customers can drive their cars on many kinds of terrain and surfaces through varying weather.
“We’re almost always on a proving ground, testing new software, and we run these thousands of times per software we release,” said one member of the time.
“We do everything from driving the car, writing the code, doing that collaboration. That feedback look is really quick,” elaborated another team member.
Check out Tesla’s Winter Testing video from Wanaka below!