Always the showman, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has taken to Twitter to tease a new feature that would adjust a vehicle’s sound system volume based on wind and road noise. The news follows Musk’s weekend selling spree wherein the serial tech entrepreneur scored $2 million in flamethrower pre-orders in less than 24 hours.
Musk made his commonplace ‘Coming soon’ remark in response to yet another feature request being made on Twitter. Model S owner Joseph Huberman suggested, “it sure would be nice if my Tesla S would adjust the media sound in relation to the wind and road noise.”
Musk’s reply? ‘Coming soon.’
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 29, 2018
Unlike a traditional internal combustion engine (ICE) car that emits engines sounds that drown out interior cabin noises, including any conversation taking place and music from the vehicle’s sound system, Tesla’s engineless vehicle is only subject to wind and tire noises. Though wind and tire noise also exists in an ICE car, it’s less prominent, as the sound of the engine is far louder and more noticeable.
Tesla’s upcoming feature will presumably use an algorithm that determines the decibel level of wind and tire noise that’s based on the speed of the vehicle and adjusts volume accordingly. Afterall, the all-electric range of a Tesla is contingent upon the speed in which the vehicle travels. Higher speeds result in an increase of air resistance, which in turn creates additional wind noise and a dependence on more energy to move the vehicle the same distance. Similarly, higher speeds create additional rolling resistance between the vehicle’s tires and the ground, thereby also producing more noise.
Though not always timely in delivering on promises, one can argue that Musk’s ‘Coming soon’ remark for new features do carry weight in the form of eventual execution. Afterall, features such as ‘Easy-entry‘ and the AI-based ‘Autowipers‘ quickly made its way into vehicles in an over-the-air software update after being suggested over Twitter. Yet, other long-promised features such as an improved web browser for Model S and Model X vehicles, and an improved Autopilot experience remain as work in progress, likely because of their complexities.
Still, being able to interact with customers directly over the micro-blogging platform has remained a favorite past time of Musk. The serial tech entrepreneur recently announced that Model 3 functions will largely be controllable via voice commands. He also noted that a software update is coming that will address a quirk with the latest rain-sensing Autowipers feature.