Wednesday, 20 June, 2018

Consumer Reports is now recommending the Tesla Model 3

SpaceX chief executive Elon Musk | AP SpaceX chief executive Elon Musk | AP
Lindsey Cook | 31 May, 2018, 20:46

"Consumer Reports now recommends the Tesla Model 3 after our testers found that a recent update improved the car's braking distance by nearly 20 feet", it said.

Initial testing saw the Model 3 stop from 60 miles per hour (100 km/h) in a distance of about 152 feet. That was the longest braking distance of any modern vehicle the magazine has tested. Consumer Reports says it was told by Tesla that the software helps the brakes adapt to variations in how they are used and how they respond in different environmental conditions.

The improved braking raised the car's score high enough for it to be a recommended buy.

Tesla's Model 3 has earned a recommendation from Consumer Reports. Testers found other problems though with the vehicles wind noise, uncomfortable rear seat, and stiff ride.

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In addition to the braking updates, Tesla also made changes to the car's touch screen interface, addressing another of the magazine's complaints that the interface is too distracting. "I've never seen a vehicle that could improve its track performance with an over-the-air update", CR Director of Auto Testing Jake Fisher said in a statement. The braking issues kept CR from giving the Model 3 its recommendation. He has played down a report identifying "big flaws" in its Model 3 sedan, admitting there is a braking issue with the vehicle but saying it will be fixed within days. And it comes at a critical time for Tesla, which has struggled to ramp up production of the Model 3 and is facing pressure from unhappy activist investor groups to bring on more independent board members. Musk has added that their criticism about the car's road noise and ride comfort have also been addressed. CR's results seem to indicate that the update worked, though the publication noted that it doesn't quite live up to Musk's promise because, "the braking performance is not class-leading". May just be a question of firmware tuning, in which case can be solved by an OTA software update'.

India's tax structure, which has kept Tesla away, is changing rapidly to facilitate shift to environment-friendly cars, Transport minister Nitin Gadkari said in January.

Despite the thumb's up from Consumer Reports, Tesla remains under scrutiny for a number of accidents involving its vehicles' "Autopilot" system.

The issue for Tesla is that unlike other auto companies, it is a young brand that needs to win people over so can´t afford too many missteps'.

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