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easy for kid to start the car?

Discussion in 'Model S' started by ajw, May 2, 2014.

  1. ajw

    ajw Member

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    Hello all,
    So my 5 year old daughter loves to jump into the front seat of my SUV (no model S,,,yet)..and pretend like she's driving. Typically this happens at home if I'm unloading something from the car, and she's still in the back seat. It has a push button starter, which only starts the car when your foot is also on the break. She can't reach the button and the break at the same time (nor does she know of this magic combination to start the car)....but it got me thinking.
    Would this be of greater concern in the MS since there is no push button starter? I think it wouldn't be an issue, as long as the key fob was in my pocket...and not in the car....but I'm just wondering out lout here.
    Yes,,ideally she wouldn't be fiddling around in the driver seat anyway...but I'm just going for the 'in theory' situation.

    Any insight would be great from current owners.
    Thanks!
     
  2. Lloyd

    Lloyd Active Member

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    Not really....

    1. She'd have to have the key
    2. She would have to be tall enough to push the brake and reach the gear selector
    3. She would have to be heavy enough to actuate the weight on seat sensor
    4. The car cannot be plugged in
    5. None of the doors or hatches can be open
    6. All of these have to be met or the car will not move
     
  3. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    I believe the weight is 80 to 100lbs that has to be sitting in the driver's seat. Thought it was 100 but am not certain.
     
  4. stephenpace

    stephenpace VIN S00219

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    Yes, I heard the weight trigger is 100 lbs.
     
  5. Alexander

    Alexander P# 8,878

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    My 3 1/2 year old did it.

    The fob was in my pocket and I was close enough to the car that when she reached down and pushed the break pedal in the car turned on. I caught her right as she was reaching to put the car in gear (I guess she's seen me do it enough times to know). I don't think the car would of actually gotten into gear if she did do it. Your foot has to be on the break while you put the car in gear, and there's no way she could do that (being so short and all). That and her weight on the pressure sensor wouldn't be enough.
     
  6. pgiralt

    pgiralt Active Member

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    I don't think that's true because once I was doing some testing where I needed the car to be on without me sitting in the chair. I can reach in with my foot and press the brake without being in the seat at all and the car will turn on.

    I also don't think the doors or hatches being open matters either. Pretty sure you can put it in drive or reverse with a door open. It will complain, but it will let you do it.

    The car being plugged in is a good way to make sure you're safe. As long as it's plugged in, it will never turn on.
     
  7. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

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    > My 3 1/2 year old did it. [Alexander]

    Get that kid a Go Kart and build a track! That's when Tiger got his golf clubs (or earlier). That's when they put on skis, etc. The earlier the better!
    --
     
  8. Alexander

    Alexander P# 8,878

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    5 isn't true anymore. I moved the car with the drivers door open before, and yesterday I had the back hatch open. I had a large power wheels in the back so the hatch wouldn't close. I drove about 2 miles with the hatch open.

    On a side note, you can see A LOT more out of the backup camera when the hatch is half way up. Makes me wish the camera was higher up on the car.
     
  9. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    You're not the first to drive with the hatch open. I was thinking same thing 'wow. I can see great out the back'. Only drive a few hundred yards but you think there would be some more obvious warning on the display.
     
  10. Electric700

    Electric700 Member

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    Good time to educate kids on the importance of safety and staying away from the driver's seat and controls! At least, until they can get their learner's permit.
     
  11. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

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    There is actually an ON button on the Model S. Two of them interlocked, in fact - the brake pedal + the pressure sensor in the driver's seat. No 5 year old will be tall enough and heavy enough to press both at the same time, hence there is no risk they'll be able to turn the car on.

    My 5 year old loves to sit in my driver's seat and "drive" daddy's Tesla. The first time she asked me in all earnesty "Ok, now how do you make it go?" as if in her mind she was totally fine with the idea of driving the car. I hated to brake the news to her that she had another 10 years to wait.
     
  12. islandbayy

    islandbayy Active Member

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    My 3 year old son and 3 year old Niece were able to start AND DRIVE the car. I was unloading, doors were all open. They were playing in the drivers seat. One hit the brake while the other was standing on the seat (heavy enough to show a presense), didn't realize it was "on", then one of em hit the shifter, and put it in drive. The car rolled 2ish ft forward and then applied the emergency brake due to the drivers door open safety measure. This was while I was in the passengers side cleaning up my older boys M&M's... Happened very quickly.
     
  13. Electricfan

    Electricfan Member

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    This is a fantastic post and great comments. Only a couple of "Tesla Defenders to the rescue!!" comments.

    Tesla reads this forum - I got an email from my service center in Houston based on a comment I only made here on the forum so I know its true - so hopefully this issue will be addressed soon.

    True story - I got in my parents Olsdmobile F85 when I was about 5 years old and took it out of park. When the car started rolling I fainted, and only woke up when the car was on our neighbors porch across the street - everybody in the neighborhood was there when I came to. Its a family story I'll never live down.
     
  14. cgiGuy

    cgiGuy Member

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    If your door is open (including driver's) and your seatbelt isn't on, the car will apply the emergency brake after rolling a foot or so. At least in reverse. Never tested it in drive.
     
  15. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    can you point out the Tesla defender posts? people were simoly pointing out what they thiught was accurate and things can change over software revisions.
     
  16. Rockster

    Rockster Active Member

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    You are correct. The car complains but moves forward or backward with door(s) open. I sometimes move the car with the door open if I'm only slightly changing its position in a parking space, for example.
     
  17. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    It's surprising to me that we don't even really know for sure the conditions under which someone can start and drive the car. This thread is proof of that.

    For example, either there is no "driver's door open safety measure" or mine is broken. I've moved my car 30-40 feet in/out of the garage into the sun for washing detailing with the driver's door open. Besides the beeping and the warning on the dash, the car never forced me to stop by applying the emergency brake.
     
  18. EdA

    EdA Model S P-2540

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    I drove yesterday with my driver's door opened after unplugging the charging cable in a public garage.
    I had to move forward to re-hang the charging cable...
     
  19. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    Although it's an unusual situation, I've had to drive cars with the door open to get through ice fog conditions. The reason is that the door needs to be open to see the centre line. Speed is dead slow of course. Limiting this ability to less than 5 mph should work.
     
  20. shark

    shark Member

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    My 10 year old has set up his own driver profile. At 4'9" or so, he can reach the pedals. His 60 lbs in the driver's seat and foot on the brake pedal turns on the car.
     

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