Tighter Turns for Cybertruck, Hidden Tow Hitch Revealed and Full Owner's Manual

January 15, 2024

By Kevin Armstrong

Tesla's Cybertruck is already going to get an improvement, according to the CEO. We’ve also discovered a few more new and interesting pieces of information about the stainless steel beast.

Enhanced Turning Radius and Maneuverability

One of many cool things about Cybertruck is the four-wheel turning. But it is not good enough, according the Elon Musk. Cybertruck boasts a 9% better turning radius than the Ford F-150 Lightning. This translates to a turning circle of 43.5 feet (12.5 meters), an impressive achievement considering the size and design of the electric pickup. But Musk says it will get even better.

We have further improvements in the works to tighten the turning circle significantly

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 14, 2024

This maneuverability is largely due to the Cybertruck's four-wheel steering system, allowing the rear wheels to rotate opposite to the front wheels at lower speeds. This feature is especially useful in tight spaces, such as job sites and crowded parking lots, making the Cybertruck more agile and easier to handle.

Four-Wheel Steering gives Cybertruck a tighter turning radius than a Model S

At low speeds, rear wheels rotate opposite to the front wheels�"enabling tighter maneuvering around the jobsite, parking lots, etc pic.twitter.com/nxDiRTZKEI

— Cybertruck (@cybertruck) December 5, 2023

Innovative Towing Capabilities

The Cybertruck is rated with a towing capacity of 11,000 lbs. A unique feature of the Cybertruck is its hidden tow hitch, which is cleverly concealed behind a removable cover in the rear bumper. This cover, located under the license plate holder, can be easily removed by opening three bumper clips with a flat-head screwdriver, as demonstrated by @VoyageATXBen. This design choice not only enhances the vehicle's aesthetic but also adds an element of surprise and sophistication to the truck's functionality.

Cybertruck tow hitch cover first look! pic.twitter.com/rn8m6rSWRK

— Ben (@VoyageATXBen) January 7, 2024

Off-Road Mode and Granular Speed Control

Cybertruck also features an enhanced off-road mode, giving drivers more precise control over the vehicle's speed, offering MPH readings in 0.5 increments. Posted on X by @itskyleconner, this level of granularity is particularly beneficial for navigating challenging off-road terrains, ensuring a smoother and more controlled driving experience.

In off-road mode Cybertruck gives you MPH in .5 level of granularity

Also here it is in full send extract mode 🏙️ pic.twitter.com/b5RFmVZYJ7

— Kyle Conner (@itskyleconner) January 3, 2024

Owner's Manual on YouTube

Cybertruck's owner's manual has been shared online, offering detailed specifications and information about the electric pickup. This manual, featured in a video by T Sportline, is based on software version 2023.44.9 and includes a full table of contents. The video, described by the person who posted it as the world’s most boring video, scrolls through the entire Cybertruck manual. We didn’t see anything we didn’t already know, but if you spot something, let us know.

Since the delivery event, Cybertruck has dominated the EV headlines. While Cybertruck is now on the road, it is still a rare sight to see. That’s why these updates provided by the Tesla community, demonstrating interesting and cool things about this new vehicle, continue to generate excitement. For those million-plus holding a reservation, this is the closest we will get to our own Cybertruck for now.

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January 14, 2024

By Kevin Armstrong

V4 Superchargers

X user, @MarcoRPi1, known for Supercharger updates, posted details on Tesla's new V4 Supercharger, offering an unprecedented look at the next-gen charging tech. This unofficial, but credible source revealed some additional details on Tesla’s V4 Superchargers. The specs list the units as capable of outputting the current 250kW, although this is expected to increase in the future. The stalls boast a wide voltage range to accommodate various EV models. The post, which the user warns might be deleted later, showed that Tesla continues to push the envelope in EV charging capabilities.

V4 Supercharger

The V4 Supercharger supports a wide array of international charging standards, such as Tesla’s NACS, as well as CCS1, CCS2, and GB/T, possibly catering to other manufacturers who wish to buy and white label Superchargers. Recently Tesla sold 100 million dollars worth of Superchargers to BP Pulse. The V4’s universal cable reach ensures a more vehicle-agnostic charging experience, bolstering consumer confidence in EV adoption. Key features of this advanced charging post include support for global and open communication standards, unmatched ergonomics, a revenue-grade DC energy meter, and an optional payment module that is required in some regions. It has a flood tolerance of up to one meter and a compact design, making it an ideal solution for space-constrained urban environments.

First Reactions to Specs: Concerns Over Practicality

The detailed specs, however, were met with immediate skepticism. @IeZSC2Maps was quick to criticize, citing personal experiences of the charging cable disconnecting in harsh weather, mocking the claim of a "best in class user experience."

This criticism echoes a sentiment we've previously reported. A Tesla enthusiast and Model 3 owner, @RoamingNorway, expressed grievances with the V4 Supercharger. He pointed out that the heavier cables compromised flexibility, and design flaws led to frequent disconnections during use. Despite a modest following, his observations struck a chord within the Tesla community and signaled to the company that all was not well. Tesla's official charging account, @TeslaCharging, did not turn a deaf ear to these complaints. They acknowledged the feedback, promising swift action to refine the cable dock and improve flexibility.

Expanding Horizons: Tesla's V4 Network Growth

The ongoing expansion of the V4 Supercharger network across Europe, including new installations and upgrades from older versions, indicates Tesla's commitment to universal charging standards. With over 55,000 Superchargers worldwide, Tesla is paving the way for the future of clean transportation.

The V4 Supercharger's advanced technology, paired with Tesla's readiness to address and rectify user concerns, paints a picture of a company that is relentless in its pursuit of innovation yet grounded in customer experience. As Tesla forges ahead with upgrades and network expansion, the V4 Supercharger is set to become the new gold standard in EV charging, so the company better get it right.

January 12, 2024

By Kevin Armstrong

Tesla Adds Smart Assistant in China

An early version of Tesla's 2023.44 update in China, has transformed its vehicles' voice command feature into a fully functional smart assistant. This assistant extends beyond vehicle control, offering features like weather updates, stock market insights, language translation, and even the recitation of Tang poetry. This development leads to speculation: is Grōk, xAI’s advanced AI model, already along for a ride or is Tesla leveraging a different service?

Grōk's Potential Role in Tesla's AI Evolution

The integration of Grōk AI into Tesla's fleet came up a few months ago when Elon Musk made a post on X that predicted that Grōk (smaller quantized) would run “native” in Tesla using local compute power. Musk then replied: Provided our vehicle AI computer is able to run the model, Tesla will probably have the most amount of true usable inference compute on Earth.

While it is not confirmed if Grōk is powering the new smart assistant in China, the possibility aligns with Tesla's trajectory towards more sophisticated AI applications in its vehicles. China also received another new feature in the update that is unavailable in other regions, a traffic light countdown.

User Impressions: A Glimpse into AI's Future in Automotive

Early feedback from Tesla users in China suggests that the new smart assistant offers a notably enhanced and intelligent experience, differentiating it from the previous basic voice command system. A Not a Tesla App reader told us that this is an authentic voice assistant. You can check the weather, stock prices, and other information.

That sounds like a young Grōk could be involved, considering its capabilities in handling complex interactions and live content processing.

Provided our vehicle AI computer is able to run the model, Tesla will probably have the most amount of true usable inference compute on Earth.

Even in a robotaxi future, the cars will only be used for ~1/3 of hours/week, leaving 2/3 for distributed inference, like SETI.

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 4, 2023

Introducing this advanced assistant raises questions about Tesla's strategy in AI development. While the specifics of Tesla's partnerships in this arena remain unclear, the company's track record suggests a strong preference for in-house development, or at least leveraging products from Musk’s sister companies. The involvement of Grōk, a product of Musk's xAI, further points to Tesla's independent approach to using its AI capabilities.

The Scope of Grōk in Enhancing Tesla's AI Features

If Grōk is part of Tesla's new smart assistant, vehicle-user interaction could significantly leap. Grōk's advanced processing capabilities could enhance various aspects of the driving experience, from improved voice recognition to more intuitive responses, though its exact role in the current update remains speculative.

Musk's recent ventures into AI with xAI and Grōk have been closely watched, with many anticipating how these technologies would integrate into Tesla's product line. Musk's vision of incorporating AI like Grōk into Tesla's vehicles could greatly improve how we interact with the car. However, this integration's exact nature and timeline are still subjects of speculation.

While it's not confirmed if Grōk is powering this feature, the speculation aligns with Tesla's known ambitions in AI. Tesla's introduction of a new smart assistant in China is the latest advancement as Tesla tries to keep up with other vehicles that have already incorporated their own AI assistants like NIO or have leveraged existing services like Google Assistant in vehicles like Polestar.

Tesla’s holiday update, which includes the smart assistant in China started rolling out today. We’ll have to wait and see how well this feature works as it rolls out to more users. It’ll hopefully become available in additional languages and countries in the coming months.


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