While Tesla has long been at the forefront of the electric vehicle industry, the safety of its products has not always been the top priority for the controversial EV maker. Now, luckily for its new customers, Tesla has reportedly added a long overdue safety feature to its Model 3 refresh (also known as Project Highland).
The feature in question is the Blind Spot Indicator, which uses sensors to monitor adjacent lanes and warn drivers when a vehicle enters their blind spot.
That has been a regular feature of other brands’ cars for years — according to Teslarati, the first car to include them was the 2001 Volvo SCC Concept Car.
It is unclear why Tesla waited so long to include the feature in its models, but the popular EV maker has been the center of several safety-related controversies recently. In one, a report from The Washington Post revealed that Tesla’s Autopilot and Full Self-Driving features have been involved in a worrying number of crashes, as drivers are using them recklessly and the built-in safety precautions are easily skirted around.
A recently released biography of Tesla CEO Elon Musk revealed that he repeatedly stormed into the Tesla offices and yelled at his employees after his Autopilot feature nearly drove him into oncoming traffic because of specifications that he himself had demanded.
In another worrying report, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has apparently opened an investigation into complaints that Tesla’s seatbelts are not adequately attached and could come loose in the event of a crash.
As for the Blind Spot Indicator, many of Teslerati’s commenters had apparently already been convinced that this safety feature is not necessary since Tesla has not offered it before and were confused about the decision. Others, however, applauded the new feature.
“WAY overdue. Blind spot is much bigger on Tesla 3 than anything I’ve driven in the past,” wrote one commenter. “Hope they use est. of driver position since that affects where the blind spot is. Doesn’t do me any good though. Am not going to buy a new Tesla 3, especially if they’ve eliminated the stalk controls. Moving shift control to the screen is fine — no different than early 60’s Chryslers. But directionals, wipers and high beams? That is a safety hazard and deal breaker.”
“I’m not gonna lie, it’s pretty sad my 23 Plaid doesn’t even have it!” wrote another.
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