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Accidentally bumped the stalk and put it in neutral-no power to pedal

Discussion in 'Model S: User Interface' started by Woland, Jan 7, 2015.

  1. Woland

    Woland Member

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    Hi folks,

    Long-time lurker, first time poster. I took delivery of my first Tesla (a P85D) last night and had a weird, scary experience about which I hope someone can enlighten me. The P85D was delivered on a truck (long story about wanting to take "delivery" in 2014 for tax purposes, so I had to have the car shipped directly to my house) last night around 8 PM:

    IMG_5093.jpg

    I inspected it with a flashlight and found no issues except dirt and rain, so I signed and took it for a quick test drive with over 150 rated miles in the battery. I drove slowly, carefully down my hill in the cool fog (around 42 degrees F) to a flat, straight empty road and did a 0 - 70 mph test in Sport mode (not Insane). I then drove another mile or so, never above 70, mostly around 40, turned around and headed home. About a mile and a half from my house I accidentally pressed the Park button and the car said I was going too fast to Park (or something to that effect). I shrugged it off and kept driving normally for another mile or so, at about 40-45 mph.

    As I slowed to turn on my street, the car would no longer react to accelerator pedal input. No matter how hard or soft I pressed on the peddle (I was NOT pressing on the brake), the car just kept gradually slowing down to a stop. I pulled over to the side of the road, applied the brake, put the car in Park, then pressed the brake pedal again, put the car in Drive and drove off normally home and parked the car for the night. "Phew!" I thought. I checked and there was about 145 rated miles left, so it was not a factor of a glitchy rated mileage reading when I set out.

    Was this just a factor of me pressing the Park button accidentally and the car reacting to that once I reached a slow enough speed, or is this something I need to worry about and inform my Tesla service folks about?

    If the former, what is the logic behind it? It seems somewhat easy, especially for noobs like me trying to figure out all the new controls and such, to press Park at higher speed and then find ourselves "losing power" and unable to accelerate (let alone keep up road speed) much later on when we don't associate it with the accidental pressing of the Park button. Seems like a weird behavior to me, but maybe there's some reason I'm missing.

    Otherwise the first day with the car has been good - although I've only had time to drive to work and back, so I'm still under 40 miles on the car. I'm still getting used to the feel of the car, and will need a lot longer with the car until I have a sense of all of its nuances, but that experience really freaked me out.

    Thank you for any insights!

    Woland / Wayne
     
  2. paulkva

    paulkva Member

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    Brand New P85D: No accelerator pedal input - intentional or cause for concern?

    Is it possible you bumped the stalk and put it in neutral a couple minutes after you accidentally pressed the Park button? That would be my first guess, especially if the car didn't issue any warnings. It happened to me once and the car didn't complain, I just noticed I was coasting (instead of slowing due to regen) and the accelerator wasn't responding. It scared & worried me briefly, but then I realized what was going on (saw the N highlighted in front of me) and simply shifted back into Drive.

    I think I had been attempting to turn on the windshield wipers, which were on a stalk on the right in my old car.

    Edited to add: if that wasn't it and if nobody else can come up with an explanation, it probably makes sense to call Tesla service and ask. If you tell them the exact date & time it happened they can probably view the logs on your car and tell you what happened.
     
  3. ChadS

    ChadS Petroleum is for sissies

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    Perhaps it was raining, and when you tried to turn on the windshield wipers you accidentally put it in to Neutral? I'm not sure that's it, but it happened to me once when the car was fairly new. (And Paul too apparently!)
     
  4. stevezzzz

    stevezzzz R;SigS;P85D;SigX

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    I don't think pressing the Park button momentarily will cause the behavior you experienced. You have to press and hold the button for the E-brake to engage and bring the car to a stop.

    Any chance you bumped the stalk and put the car in Neutral coming around that corner? It doesn't take much force and the car will give you no indication except that the transmission indicator on the instrument cluster will say 'N' instead of 'D'.
     
  5. paulkva

    paulkva Member

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    Funny thing is, my car was almost a year old when it happened to me. No idea what I was thinking at the time... :)
     
  6. Woland

    Woland Member

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    Hmm, that is possible I suppose, but I certainly don't remember it. But yes, I think I was bumbling about looking for the windshield wipers at one point, and I could have done just that. There certainly were no warnings being displayed as I coasted to a stop whilst pressing the accelerator. I'll test that out tomorrow / later tonight and report back.

    Thanks for the insight Paul and Chad! I'm hoping that is what happened.

    - - - Updated - - -

    By the way, now that there's a very plausible explanation for this, should I edit the subject of the post to clarify? What's the etiquette for things like that?

    Thanks!
     
  7. stevezzzz

    stevezzzz R;SigS;P85D;SigX

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    I think only Mods can change a thread subject.
     
  8. sachinsc

    sachinsc Member

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    This has happened to me too. Arggh, the joys of switching between cars. #FirstWorldProblems
     
  9. idoco

    idoco Member

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    Accidentally put into neutral. Been there, done that....:wink:
     
  10. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    Certainly what it sounds like. And the car provides little indication that's it's occurred. There's no audible notice, very little to no tactile feedback (in the old stalk at least), and the indicator on the dash is pretty small. It seems like hitting the accelerator while in neutral should produce a warning similar to hitting the brake and accelerator at the same time to make it more clear. In an ICE you hear the engine rev, at least.
     
  11. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

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    I think you inadvertently put the car in N. On your next drive while on a road with no other traffic, at a moderate speed put the car in N and I bet you will then have exactly the same experience with the accelerator pedal not responding. Don't slow to a stop just put it back in D. All will be well.
     
  12. paulkva

    paulkva Member

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    +1. A little triple-beep and a dashboard message along the lines of "You can't accelerate in Neutral, silly!" would be quite helpful. A fake engine rev sound would be amusing but probably would've scared me even more. :)
     
  13. svp6

    svp6 Member

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    Did that too on my first day in p85D. Neutral that is....
     
  14. MrClown

    MrClown Autosteer Beta Tester

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    My Camry hybrid gives a beep and warning on the console when you press the gas while in Neutral. I bet it's easy enough for Tesla to add the same kind of thing in the software.
     
  15. Vitaman

    Vitaman Member

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    In 2 weeks I have done it at least 6 times.
    Is it a design flaw?....I am totally unaware I am doing it until the car becomes sluggish.
    There must be some control I was used to touching in my former car that leads me there, but it is unconscious.
     
  16. xy46

    xy46 Member

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    Have had my first Tesla, a P85D, for a little over two weeks. Tonight I did this exact thing twice within five minutes. I pressed the right stalk down for a single wipe of the wipers (like in my prior vehicle), and inadvertantly put the car in Neutral. Both times this occurred while at a stoplight. When it turned green, pressed on the accelerator and no go. Momentary panic until I realized what I did, and then put the car back in gear and headed off. Repeated the same thing less than 5 minutes later, LOL. Sounds to me like you did the same thing. :smile:
     
  17. MrClown

    MrClown Autosteer Beta Tester

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    I appreciate you trying to put it into park at speed though. I've been worried about doing that myself but it sounds like it's no big deal.
     
  18. MikeBur

    MikeBur ManualPilot

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    Definitely an easy, and subconscious / muscle memory thing to do in the rain; particularly when coming from a German car such as Audi / BMW as their wiper stalk is in a similar position on the right
     
  19. pgiralt

    pgiralt Active Member

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    Like others have said, I'm willing to bet that you popped it into Neutral. I've done it a couple of times - usually when switching from reverse to drive and I don't press it far enough and I freak out a bit because the car keeps rolling backwards when I hit the accelerator.
     
  20. Woland

    Woland Member

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    Yep, that's what it was. I think my Audi's wiper stalk is there and I did it subconsciously last night.

    Thanks everyone! And agreed that a little warning indicator would be nice. The engine whine on an ICE does the trick. ;)

    Sorry for the confusion, and appreciate all the help and shared experiences! ;)
     

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