Interesting take on the Tesla Model 3 brake software upgrade:
More detail here: https://arstechnica.com/cars/2018/05/how-a-software-brake-upgrade-won-tesla-a-consumer-reports-endorsement/Tesla’s over-the-air brake upgrade was amazing—and also a bit worrying
According to Abuelsamid, conventional car companies spend months carefully calibrating these systems, testing them on a wide variety of surfaces and weather conditions.
"This process often entailed compromises that might trade off one surface a bit to gain some stopping distance or stability on another," he writes. "As we approached a production freeze, we would be battling to cut an extra foot of stopping distance, not 20 feet."
So the fact that Tesla's engineers were able to slash 20 feet (six meters) off of the Model 3's stopping distance after a few days of work suggests that the company had not subjected the brakes to particularly rigorous testing in the months before the Model 3's release.
And that raises questions about whether the brakes might perform poorly in other, more demanding situations, Abuelsamid says.
The fact that Tesla engineers were able to slash nearly 20 feet of stopping distance in a couple of days is a sign that there was something fundamentally broken in what they were doing," Abuelsamid concludes. "Given the speed of this update, it's likely that Tesla hasn't even evaluated those other surfaces yet and this may not be the last braking-related update for the Model 3."