Most Annoying Feature - 2013 Tesla Model S Long-Term Road Test

2013 Tesla Model S Long-Term Road Test

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2013 Tesla Model S: Most Annoying Feature

March 11, 2014

2013 Tesla Model S

Excluding multiple drive unit failure, the 2013 Tesla Model S's most annoying feature, or lack thereof, is this: no volume knob. Elon and friends have over-thought many aspects of this car, some for good (giganto multimedia display, acceleration as dreamy as a box of Whip-Its) and some for ill.

When you absolutely must pummel your eardrums to the first wails of "Immigrant Song" for example, it's very soft-rock to reach down for a twist of the old touch-sensitive volume icon. Cadillac and Ford fare only marginally better here, too. Even the iPhone has tactile volume control.

Sure, there's the left-thumb dial on the steering wheel. There's also cholera, Bieber, and cesium-laced bluefin.

Dan Frio, Automotive Editor


  • rock2155 rock2155 Posts:

    Left-thumb dial.

  • nukeedmunds nukeedmunds Posts:

    Isn't it curious... this one Tesla post alone is more critical of its subject than all posts involving the repeated dangerous faults and failures in the Dodge Dart. Sounds like Elon needs to bump up his Edmunds advertising budget to match Fiasler's.

  • As has been mentioned before by others: there are things that touch screens do really well and there are things that buttons and knobs do really well. If you try to have either do everything it isn't good.

  • duck87 duck87 Posts:

    Be nice if they had one unlabelled knob, one that's multifunctional depending on which part of the touchscreen you're on.... of course, two knobs are even better.

  • fordson1 fordson1 Posts:

    "Excluding multiple battery failure..." I'm seeing in these most recent posts a lot of staff disenchantment with the Model S.

  • handbrake handbrake Posts:

    So are we getting a hint about the problem that led to the most recent replacement of the drivetrain? I assume that the fact that there was no reference to motor failure implies that the culprit behind the two drivetrain replacements was a faulty battery...

  • gslippy gslippy Posts:

    What do you mean by "multiple battery failure"? The first drivetrain replacement didn't involve the battery (remember the whine in the video?). The second drivetrain replacement included the battery, but of course you haven't explained that one. As for the volume knob - my Leaf doesn't have one, either, but I've gotten used to it. Besides, it automatically adjusts the volume for road speed. My 05 xB1 didn't have a volume knob, either, IIRC.

  • duck87 duck87 Posts:

    @handbrake: The 1st replacement was definitely because of the motor, because of the sounds coming from it...

  • fordson1 fordson1 Posts:

    gslippy - I think he is referring to the one failure of the HV battery pack and the two failures of the 12V battery. As for the second powertrain replacement, to quote the post, "While accelerating up the 101 north onramp, something happened. I'm not sure what as I'm not a tech guy. The best way to describe the feeling would be to compare it to a manual-transmission car stalling in first gear. The Tesla jerked violently forward, and then lost power." That sounds to me like a fairly, let's say, energetic episode that occurred while the powertrain was under some degree of stress (accelerating up an onramp while in "what'll she do" mode). I don't know as that would indicate to me just a HV battery pack failure mode. But I'm no expert on this car.

  • I cant remember the last time I used the knob on my headunit. All my volume controlling has been using my steering wheel controls.

  • haralampi haralampi Posts:

    Sure, there's the left-thumb dial on the steering wheel. There's also cholera, Bieber, and cesium-laced bluefin. And then there is retarded journalism.

  • muffyay muffyay Posts:

    I have read all long-term test articles on the Model S. I regret to say that this one makes me consider stopping. Seriously, long-term testing a vehicle without reading the user manual and then complaining over bad or missing features that actually are there? Even though finding the volume dial would not require reading the manual for most people. Apparently you did not learn anything from the homelink article. To save any credibility you may have left you should admit you s****d up instead adding the last paragraph to your article.

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