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P D N R in a Tesla should be E F N B

scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,235
Canada
Traditional P for Park D for Drive N for Neutral and R for Reverse doesn't really fully apply or best describe EV actions as in Teslas. I thought the UI for human driving could use a language touch up and bring things into this century!

Here's the idea:

The indicator sets an expectation for what will happen when pedals are pressed.

E replaces P. "E is for Exit / Entry or Emergency". E means the car is ready to exit / enter. Or Emergency brake button was pressed. Whenever the rear calipers have clamped down, show E. You can release pedals and nothing surprising happens. Thrust pedal does nothing in E. Brake pedal may be applied for even more force on un/clamped wheels, if available. I guess the word "Park" is OK too, it's just a little dated (there's no parking pawl gear in the car) so it's kind of quaint... a park is a nice green place to visit.

F replaces D. "F is for Forward". It's more descriptive than "Drive" which could be taken for driving in either direction whereas F means you'll next be going Forward when thrust pedal is applied, there's no mistaking that.

N is still Neutral. As we know it. Thrust pedal does nothing, but brake pedal can be applied to stop car from rolling, as is usual for any N situation. (It's too soon to call this what it should be R for "Rolling".)

B replaces R. "B is for Backwards". Pressing thrust means you'll shoot backwards. The word "reverse" is a bad choice because it's relative to what's going on e.g. reversing your backward direction means you'll be going forward. Confusing huh? But Backward is absolute and a sure thing about what happens when thrust is applied.


One change of action I'd like to see even while Tesla stays fixated on PDNR... is the display should change from P to N if the car is put into tow / transport mode (Emergency brake OFF) and stays in N so long as the mode is engaged and emergency brake is not re-applied. I think the car keeps on displaying P in tow mode today (E in the future :) )
 

LM-5

Member
Sep 6, 2018
201
422
Colorado
We’re not going to accelerate sustainable transport by making these cars feel foreign and unfamiliar to the masses. Tesla has already taken a number of liberties that can add friction into the process of non-nerds adopting EVs. Let’s not overdo it.
 

cwerdna

Active Member
Jul 11, 2012
3,448
2,298
SF Bay Area, CA
Traditional P for Park D for Drive N for Neutral and R for Reverse doesn't really fully apply or best describe EV actions as in Teslas. I thought the UI for human driving could use a language touch up and bring things into this century!

Here's the idea:

The indicator sets an expectation for what will happen when pedals are pressed.
...
B replaces R. "B is for Backwards".
I doubt E F N B would pass muster in the US with FMVSS. See 49 CFR 571.102 - Standard No. 102; Transmission shift position sequence, starter interlock, and transmission braking effect..

Also, many cars for ages have had B as a FORWARD position w/more regenerative braking. 01 Prius (gen 1) had it. My 06 Prius (gen 2) has it. Current Priuses have it. My Leaf has it and they still do. It may go back further than the gen 1 Prius we got in the US (NHW11).

And,
wouldn't work anymore. :D
 
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Brando

Active Member
Sep 27, 2016
2,875
2,000
Bainbridge Island, WA
Love to sail. Sailors like to use starboard and port - shows they know the lingo. BUT for safety reasons I always use right and left as in our auto era these are the terms people know.

Still I really like your terms, Karen. I may try to use. Perhaps it would be a great theft deterrent.
 

CarterStC

Member
Jun 26, 2018
183
151
CA
The term "accelerator" has existed for years and is perfectly descriptive; no need to make up your own terms for it. "Go pedal", "thrust pedal" and others just make the poster appears to have limited vocabulary.
 

scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,235
Canada

Actually, after having read that reference... I think it would pass.

It doesn't prescribe what the labels are to be for the various positions on the stalk.

There are lots of quaint notions in that reference... "transmission" "gear change" ... these don't apply to any Tesla.

That's what I mean, code is not caught up to EV. It's "geared" for ICE. :p
 
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mongo

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2017
12,966
38,501
Michigan
Actually, after having read that reference... I think it would pass.

It doesn't prescribe what the labels are to be for the various positions on the stalk.

There are lots of quaint notions in that reference... "transmission" "gear change" ... these don't apply to any Tesla.

That's what I mean, code is not caught up to EV. It's "geared" for ICE. :p
Wrong section, 101 has the indicator part
49 CFR 571.101 - Standard No. 101; Controls and displays.
prndl.PNG


Not planning on changing it either.
NHTSA will not change the “PRND” abbreviation in column 3 because it is highly recognized by drivers.[7] Changing it to “PRN” may mislead some to believe it refers to an item other that the automatic transmission control position.
Federal Register :: Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; Controls, Telltales and Indicators

(thanks for the flashbacks :confused:)
 
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scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,235
Canada
@mongo did you used to work there, or do you just have some kind of crazy google-fu skills?

WHo the HecK elsE would know about such things?!
 

scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,235
Canada
Sounds like you just need to get yourself a label maker and put it on your gear stalk... done!

Nah, if I do that I'll forget how to drive the car. I'm too soaked in the old ways.

The only way this will work is to train upcoming generations.

"What's a gear shift daddy? Tell us that story again... about your first car."
 

ragrvs

Member
Jun 17, 2018
38
23
Mississippi
I honestly just don't see the point. Changing it adds nothing but creates confusion. The fact that you had to explain exactly what it means to a bunch of car enthusiast shows that it is difficult to understand without explanation. Why make things more difficult?
 
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scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,235
Canada
I honestly just don't see the point. Changing it adds nothing but creates confusion. The fact that you had to explain exactly what it means to a bunch of car enthusiast shows that it is difficult to understand without explanation. Why make things more difficult?
Why make things more difficult... for the old guys? Agreed. It's hard for our brains to adapt.

But

Things like this must change to keep up with reality. Standards must adapt to new physical realities brought on by technology ... or we'd still have horse and buggy references in codes and standards forever.

Old guys like us understand this, it's just not enthusiastically embraced when we realize we'd have to adapt to them ourselves. Leave it to the next gen.
 

scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,235
Canada
What really started me thinking of this being a generalized problem of datedness.. appears in the first post of this thread too... it's this:

One change of action I'd like to see even while Tesla stays fixated on PDNR... is the display should change from P to N if the car is put into tow / transport mode (Emergency brake OFF) and stays in N so long as the mode is engaged and emergency brake is not re-applied. I think the car keeps on displaying P in tow mode today (E in the future :) )


We have cars that roll around in Park. ...because of a special "mode" that allows it. Hmm... something is funny about that.

P means Park. Not roll.

I found this odd, heh?

At least Tesla could and should maybe use the "N" for Neutral when in this mode. The convention and general understanding, even for us old guys, is that cars are free to roll when in N. That's the meaning of N.

That's underlying what sparked this all up for me.

What do you guys think of N being more suitable for transport mode?
 
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mongo

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2017
12,966
38,501
Michigan
What really started me thinking of this being a generalized problem of datedness.. appears in the first post of this thread too... it's this:




We have cars that roll around in Park. ...because of a special "mode" that allows it. Hmm... something is funny about that.

P means Park. Not roll.

I found this odd, heh?

At least Tesla could and should maybe use the "N" for Neutral when in this mode. The convention and general understanding, even for us old guys, is that cars are free to roll when in N. That's the meaning of N.

That's underlying what sparked this all up for me.

What do you guys think of N being more suitable for transport mode?

Firstly, the display does not show P when in tow mode.

tow_mode.PNG


Which is better than a four wheel drive with a transfer case which can free roll in Park.
 
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scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,235
Canada
I think for the model 3 it still shows P in transport mode. She's got the newer 9 software.

I'll check on my S at lunch too, see if it's more like a X or 3. I'm not on 9 yet.


I have seen Tesla do other changes to update the UI to match standards and conventions, maybe to get into compliance with more local laws. They updated the labels on the exterior lighting selector, removing words, and putting in symbols. I think symbols are called for in countries like where I live (Canada).

I do understand it must be a nightmare making a car compliant with every differences in standards around the world.
 
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