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I wish the Model 3 had the new Model S steering wheel

drtimhill

Active Member
Apr 25, 2019
1,677
2,032
Seattle
Interesting post -- thanks.

I'll venture to say that wheels made a lot of sense when they were mechanically linked to the wheels since they solved both leverage and turning radius problems. Electronic linkage gives the car designer room for other choices since leverage is irrelevant and turning radius can be solved with a weighted algorithm.

I don't know if I will like the Tesla approach, but I'll be happy to try it out.

The only concerning detail I've heard is from the MLB blog that pointed out that Tesla has done away with the gear selector. Now the car decides, and over-ride is via the center screen. To quote MLB: "I don't know about that, chief."

I'd be interested to see how the car decides between forward and reverse gears :)

As for steering, yes, probably the origins date back to physical needs (and I learned to drive in a car without power steering). However, note that steering is already graduated today: you get smaller changes at first (so lane keeping at speed can be done easily), then larger changes as you move the wheel more (for 90/180 degree turns). Even so, I would be scared to see the average driver try to handle a U wheel safely on the road .. perhaps Tesla think they have a solution for this, though I'm skeptical.
 

elptxjc

Member
Dec 15, 2019
752
142
El Paso, TX
That steering wheel belongs on a video game. As many have said, it'd be very dangerous if full lock is more than 1/2 turn, and even 1/2 turn would be too much for many to handle. And it'd make the car dangerous to many with that quick of a steering. Even our 2021 M3 LR with 1 turn full lock is already darty enough. I'm extremely surprised it passed federal standards; I bet there's no specific standard, since nobody thought an automaker would throw a wheel like that, so I bet that law will change quickly. That steering wheel is a deal-breaker to me. Plus that interior just looks downright goofy with the same exterior. An ultra modern interior on a stately (and old) exterior just doesn't make any sense to me. We'll see how it sells. The other bad news was the price increase. I was thinking about maybe getting one at $68K, but $80K? No thanks. Plus it'd probably wouldn't make sense to have both cars EVs, so will get another quiet ICE car instead.
 
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stopcrazypp

Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2007
10,025
4,955
That steering wheel belongs on a video game. As many have said, it'd be very dangerous if full lock is more than 1/2 turn, and even 1/2 turn would be too much for many to handle. And it'd make the car dangerous to many with that quick of a steering. Even our 2021 M3 LR with 1 turn full lock is already darty enough. I'm extremely surprised it passed federal standards; I bet there's no specific standard, since nobody thought an automaker would throw a wheel like that, so I bet that law will change quickly. That steering wheel is a deal-breaker to me. Plus that interior just looks downright goofy with the same exterior. An ultra modern interior on a stately (and old) exterior just doesn't make any sense to me. We'll see how it sells. The other bad news was the price increase. I was thinking about maybe getting one at $68K, but $80K? No thanks. Plus it'd probably wouldn't make sense to have both cars EVs, so will get another quiet ICE car instead.
It was mentioned in the comments somewhere, but one solution is to have a highly variable ratio that varies with the speed of the car. This apparently is not unprecedented. So basically at high speeds, it'll take a lot more movement to steer the car, but at low speeds, a lot less.
 

Tam

Well-Known Member
Nov 25, 2012
8,580
7,382
Visalia, CA
...U wheels (and similar) are designed for race cars since the driver has to maintain a constant (and hard) grip on the wheel in cramped conditions...

Very good point! The way car racers hold those butterfly steering wheels, they look very tense and not relaxing at all.
 

eisenb11

Member
Dec 11, 2020
199
209
Redondo Beach, CA
Yep, and I seriously doubt the DOT will approve it! It is a nightmare for any kind of real driving or an emergency maneuver! I hate it!

The online configurator was already updated for the Model S and you can order this... wonder if that implies this is all signed-off and for real or is Tesla taking orders on something that they're not sure they can deliver?
 
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Msjulie

Active Member
Jun 26, 2016
2,427
1,738
Monterey Bay Peninsula
really nice! I can't see anything but that damn Koala face!!

Yeah even if I liked it I can't look at it ! :)


Love the gender slams of the day :( and wow, that is a horrible idea.

New stuff can be cool (I work in tech so I'm a geek always checking out the newest thing) but this is not a case when change is needed in my opinion and it just is unappealing in looks too..
 

Gvardaman

Member
Oct 30, 2020
95
18
So. California
Well, at the quarterly financial report Elon said they were in production on the Model S now and would start delivering in February. I think if this were set in “the Fall” or “Q4” I would be dubious. That close? I’d say they will be delivering and they are okay with the steering yoke.
Also, for places where the yolk would not be allowed, there is a steering wheel, just like existing cars.

 
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diplomat33

Well-Known Member
Aug 3, 2017
7,190
8,213
Terre Haute, IN USA
NHTSA is going to look at the new Model S steering wheel yoke:

"It seems the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration isn’t sure if Tesla’s new steering wheel design is legal.

The regulator told Road & Track: “At this time, NHTSA cannot determine if the steering wheel meets Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards,” the agency told R&T. “We will be reaching out to the automaker for more information."

NHTSA Wants to Talk to Tesla About Half-Circle Steering Wheel - Tesla Motors Club

I wonder if Tesla will be forced to change it?
 
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Rippin1Gear

Member
Feb 7, 2020
130
81
Seattle
I think people are assuming the steering rack won’t change... I have doubts that it will be a “quick steer” ratio that will allow these “difficult” turns to be done easily with the yoke.
 
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Tam

Well-Known Member
Nov 25, 2012
8,580
7,382
Visalia, CA
...NHTSA is going to look at the new Model S steering wheel yoke...

At least, it's not the other way around: to ban it first and talk later.

It's up to Tesla to use its persuasion power that it's safe to take your eyes off the road to peck for the correct flat icon to do essential operations in driving because, with Robtaxi, you won't even need a driver to drive in the first place.
 
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Mr X

Future Martian
Jan 18, 2013
2,138
1,670
Simi Valley, CA
Yoke interior pic was to stir controversy and get everyone talking. Easy genius marketing by Elon.


Reg wheel will probably be standard and if Yoke is actually legal then it will be an option (or standard and a reg wheel optional)


People worrying too much about half a wheel lul.


Just like the Model 3 interior, at first people didn't like it, but then you got use to it and actually love it (or hate it cuz ur weird) ;)
 

djgarrett21

Member
Jul 22, 2018
219
279
Utah
I'd take the yoke all day long if it was an option when I purchased. It makes even more sense with the 2nd screen behind the wheel providing for an unobstructed view.

I'm always surprised (but shouldn't be by now) by the pushback from so many when it comes to Tesla design changes. I must be in the minority but I see something like this and think "wow I can see the benefits I wanna try that!".

Judging by the responses in this thread most don't think that way, which I find curious for a community of people like us who are fans of a very forward thinking company.
 

Tam

Well-Known Member
Nov 25, 2012
8,580
7,382
Visalia, CA
..."wow I can see the benefits I wanna try that!"...

Pros:
1) The instrument cluster is no longer obstructed by the full circle (because the upper half of the circle is now missing)
2) Saves space (especially in a very limited driver space of racing car)
3) Popular for racers
4) Why need stalks and gear shifters when the car can guess for you.

Cons:

I'm 5'5" and I can see the instrument clusters fine with no obstruction with the current full circle steering wheel.

Many races are in a closed course with predictable turns and they don't have to deal with real-life roads where a turn/u-turn/reverse can mean more than 2 full turns, more than a 360-degree turn for a steering wheel.

A full circle means I can have many positions to rest my hands on which is not true with the half-circle steering wheel as my options would be cut down to a half.

The essential driving operation icons are flat, under the surface, and not raised like braille for the blind. That means to signal left for to push for horn, a driver needs to take the eyes off the road in order to hunt and peck the correct icon.

In summary, the benefit may be acceptable for a very special occupation in a closed course race car but it is impractical for every day driving.

See the Youtube clip for the Knight Rider yoke steering wheel that's great for the look but impractical for real-life driving.
 

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