Tesla teased further improvements to the Model S and Model X past its the Ultra Red paint color, including a new, lighter glass room, performance brakes, and the option to choose a traditional round steering wheel instead of the Yoke.
Last night, Tesla announced its new Model S and Model X paint color, Ultra Red, which appears to be slightly darker than the previous Red Multi-Coat.
Tesla has teased new paint colors and added exclusive shades to vehicles in the European market, and this is the first update to U.S. paint schemes since 2017 with the Model 3’s Silver Metallic, which was discontinued in 2018.
But more meets the eye than the new Ultra Red paint color, and Tesla detailed them in a Tweet earlier today.
Tesla detailed three major changes: a new glass roof, new and improved brake pads, and the round steering option.
Tesla said the new Model S glass roof “now weighs less & lets in 5x more light with same level of UV protection. This also improves handling as it helps low center of gravity.”
Tesla has always kept tabs on its vehicle performance and has routinely made small changes to improve it. A low center of gravity for electric vehicles is already provided by the presence of the battery pack. However, additional weight is positioned in certain areas to improve stability and vehicle handling. A study from Energy Procedia in 2012 evaluated the advantages of a low center of gravity for all-electric vehicles, and showed weight distribution was one of the most important factors in improving maneuvering.
Improved Brake Pads
Tesla said that Plaid Model S and Model X vehicles now feature improved brake pads with higher thermal capacity, which contributes to better overall braking performance.
While there has been some speculation over what is going on with the Model S and Model X’s rear brake calipers, Tesla said the revisions to the brake pads to both Plaid vehicles will help increase overall performance.
Brakes become incredibly hot when they are applied, especially to high-performance cars as friction at higher speeds generates high amounts of heat. Things like the size of the brake pads can put pressure at a larger radius and make friction less concentrated in certain areas, allowing for less braking distance while also offering longevity.
Round Steering Wheel Option
Early this year, Tesla started offering new Model S and Model X owners the option to choose a Yoke or Round Steering wheel when ordering their vehicle. In the past, Tesla only offered the Yoke with these cars, and the decision was polarizing to say the least.
Tesla announced it would start offering a retrofit as well earlier this year, which is still unavailable but could be later this month as the automaker still says it will be “available March 2023.”
Early last year, Tesla was already leaning toward the idea of letting drivers choose their steering wheel shape.
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