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Possible to deactivate TACC and use "regular, dumb" cruise control? Phantom braking & unexpected slowdowns

marvinat0rz

Member
May 10, 2013
349
671
Norway
Hi folks. Driving a 2019 Model 3 in Norway. Cruise control is largely unusable to me. Is it possible to change the settings such that the traffic-aware cruise control just governs the speed and uses no "safety" features? I am getting both unexpected slowdowns and have experienced phantom braking that are both so dangerous to traffic that it's frequently more risky to use the feature than not. Details below.

  1. Phantom braking: Norway's road network is largely two-lane roads without a central divider. Roads are otherwise wide enough for comfort, speed limit 50 mph, mostly long stretches where visibility is good. Working cruise control would make my driving safer and more comfortable, but I've experienced multiple instances of the loud "danger" chime along with hard braking. This happens with oncoming traffic that's inside its lane, usually but not always during a turn, but usually bigger than most cars, e.g. buses or tractors.

    This emergency braking is so sudden that I would be guaranteed to get hit from behind if there was a car directly behind me. I haven't experienced this error for a while, but I've stopped using this feature when traffic is nearby as it's a significant security risk.

    A side note -- The false positives also make the positive part of this safety feature worse, as they condition me to second-guess the car's responses and there's really no room for that if I actually experienced an emergency. E.g. if the car noticed a moose that I did not and started braking -- my first response would now be to check the mirror to determine if the (by experience, unnecessary) slowdown is a security risk, taking my eyes away from the potential security risk in front. You can see how this makes the system of car & driver less safe and skipping the cruise control completely makes the drive safer.

  2. Unexpected slowdowns: When driving on a 4-lane highway, independent of whether there's traffic nearby, the car sometimes resets the cruise control setting from 70 to 50 mph and immediately starts braking. The braking is not as sudden as with the phantom braking above, but still presents a security risk as an unattentive driver behind would most likely hit me. They would probably be at fault in court, sure, but I'd rather just not get hit in the first place. So now I also turn off TACC when I'm on a 4-lane road and there's a car behind me, which sort of defeats the point.

  3. Unnecessary slowdowns: When driving on a 4-lane highway and passing another car, the car frequently gets nervous and seems to think that the other car is about to enter my lane when it's not. It slows down from the e.g. 10mph relative velocity to a speed that's slower than the car I'm about to pass. This is also sort of risky, as it presents the same hazard to cars behind as point 2 above, but it's more of an inconvenience as it will later accelerate.
So, long story summarized briefly: Driving my Tesla is wonderful, but the TACC feature is closer to unusable to me than not, and it more often becomes a security risk than a benefit.

Can I turn off all the "intelligent" features somehow and just get a system that reliably governs my car's speed and leaves all other decisions to me?
 
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Matias

Active Member
Apr 2, 2014
3,455
4,162
Finland
I sense a certain annoyance in your response. Does TACC happen to be unreliable over in the beautiful forests of Finland as well? :D
Sorry to be so abrupt to your well-formulated post 🙂
This problem is common and many users have voiced similar hopes, but unfortunately there’s no dumb cruise control in Tesla.

Maybe Tesla thinks that the possibility to use dumb cruise could lead to mode confusion or the other possible explanation is that they don’t want to admit the problem.

Personally I don’t experience this problem as I have legacy AP1 hardware.
 

marvinat0rz

Member
May 10, 2013
349
671
Norway
Sorry to be so abrupt to your well-formulated post 🙂
This problem is common and many users have voiced similar hopes, but unfortunately there’s no dumb cruise control in Tesla.

Maybe Tesla thinks that the possibility to use dumb cruise could lead to mode confusion or the other possible explanation is that they don’t want to admit the problem.

Personally I don’t experience this problem as I have legacy AP1 hardware.
Good to hear you don't have the problem. And sort of sad that the reason you don't have the problem is that this version of the software doesn't run on your car. It's not a good thing to receive an upgrade that makes your vehicle worse.

I'm as big a fan of Tesla as any, been following the company for almost a decade and rooted for them through years of misinformation and propaganda, but it's really poor customer service that they won't address this obvious safety and usability issue that affects lots of owners. Hope they fix it. These issues turn what should be a very nice and convenient feature into something pretty crappy that it's better to just leave alone.

Thanks for your response though :)
 

MadTxn

Member
Jun 26, 2021
21
40
Maryland
How does it perform if you set the Forward Collision Warning to "Late" (which is obviously not ideal)? I'm assuming it's set to Medium at this point.

1627907731433.png
 

CapinWinky

Member
Jun 17, 2020
89
90
Richmond, VA
I just drove to work in my new 3, the first trip since the short ride home from the dealer. I gave up on cruise control after 10 minutes. I had the following distance set to the closest possible setting and it was still freaking out about cars changing lanes 30 meters ahead and hesitating when passing cars that aren't even in my lane. Got a phantom braking event on open interstate which is when I just turned it off and gave up.

In all my previous cars, I've used cruise control constantly. The most used controls in my car were probably cancel, +/resume, and -/set. I want some good-ol' dumb cruise control!
 

marvinat0rz

Member
May 10, 2013
349
671
Norway
How does it perform if you set the Forward Collision Warning to "Late" (which is obviously not ideal)? I'm assuming it's set to Medium at this point.

View attachment 690966
Yep, you're right, and I haven't tried adjusting the settings yet. Some of them I was a little nervous about, since I'm not 100% confident on the implications based on the descriptions that are immediately apparent. Since, you know, if someone falls asleep heading towards a brick wall or floors the accelerator in front of the dockside and I was responsible for turning the defense mechanisms off, I'd feel pretty bad about it afterwards :) But I'll try that next.
 

Gimmethecash

Member
May 8, 2021
359
397
Pasadena, CA
Mine’s not perfect, but setting FCW to “late” did help, it’s mostly on the freeway, passing trucks on curves to the left where it gets confused. Occasionally happens approaching an underpass.

I’ve gotten to where I put my foot on the accelerator pedal in anticipation when these conditions occur, ready to override.
 

cobra

Member
Feb 8, 2021
194
37
Lansdale, PA, USA
Just curious, how long have you had the car?

For 1) Would you say this occurs on sunny days with longer shadows from the passing vehicle? Do you ever drive at night and see any similar behavior?

For 2) What features does your car have? Do you have the Full Self Drive option or only Autopilot (or other option for your country?) Just curious, as this behavior seems to be one of two things here. Either speed limit sign reading (which you do not mention) or poor map data with associated speed limit data. I notice that passing a speed limit sign with the Self Driving option will always adjust the speed limit in Autopilot mode downwards if the speed limit is lower than current set speed. If no signs are detected, then this would seem like a map data problem. It may be worth using the voice input and saying 'report bug' at those locations (although several people will say that Tesla does not review these...)

For 3) Yes, just annoying. Have seen this vary rarely. Does it also occur with sun and strong shadows?

Have you tried to perform the camera re-calibration procedure? It certainly can't hurt, although you may not see any improvement. I believe it is under the service menu. It will require some time to re-enable the vision features once triggered, so allow yourself 30 minutes or so of driving. It did not take that long on our car the last time I tried it, but I have seen reports that it might take 100 miles in some cases, so not sure what the limits are. Also check cameras for cleanliness and lack of damage to covers. Any body films applied over camera panels?

Unfortunately, there are a number of people that have trouble with braking and TACC. It may be the region they drive in or road conditions. I suppose it may vary by nationality as well based on style of traffic control devices.

Here it has been pretty reliable. The most annoying thing I have seen recently are a couple school zone warning lights that the car treats like a traffic light, even though they are completely unlit and cross overhead. They confuse the car enough that tapping the stalk to continue doesn't work well and the car will decide to stop 2 or 3 times before continuing. It's not aggressive though, so little chance of rear-end issues and plenty of time to cancel TACC/Autopilot and just take over.
 

rt29781

Member
Apr 14, 2021
12
14
Aberdeen
Hi I also have had multiple phantom braking events and at the weekend on a 500 mile drive it happened 4 times. Twice on the crowded M6 in rain at 70mph. There was no valid reason for the braking and it could have resulted in a very serious accident. I have reported this to Tesla and due to their “ relaxed” response I have officially reported the incident to the DVSA in the U.K. see Vehicle Safety Defect Report | DVSA

I would strongly urge U.K. Tesla owners that experience phantom braking to report it to the DVSA. This issue of phantom braking is very annoying and dangerous and really spoils an amazing car. My software version is 2021.12.25.7. I have read that newer software is more reliable but so far Tesla have refused to update my software.
 

GoldCountryCA

Ordered 5/2, M3LR wh/bl/18”
May 5, 2021
85
101
Cool, CA
All the safety settings are turned off in mine, including emergency braking. The car phantom brakes several times during my commute. The TACC is terrible. More of a safety hazard for me, as it will slam on the brakes with someone behind me. All you can do is roll the window down, wave and apologize.

My wife drives a new Toyota with all the camera and radar assisted tech and it’s cruise control works fantastic. It does exactly what you want adaptive CC to do—it moves you perfectly with the flow of traffic and keeps you a safe distance from the cars around you.
 

Terminator857

Member
Aug 5, 2019
451
467
Ca
... The car phantom brakes several times during my commute. The TACC is terrible. More of a safety hazard for me, as it will slam on the brakes with someone behind me. All you can do is roll the window down, wave and apologize.

My wife drives a new Toyota with all the camera and radar assisted tech and it’s cruise control works fantastic. It does exactly what you want adaptive CC to do—it moves you perfectly with the flow of traffic and keeps you a safe distance from the cars around you.
How long is your commute? My phantom braking is predictable. Happens when there is slower traffic on the right. I'm ready with the electron peddle to accelerate. A video of your phantom braking would be interesting.

What kind of Toyota does your wife have? Does it have autosteer?
 

GoldCountryCA

Ordered 5/2, M3LR wh/bl/18”
May 5, 2021
85
101
Cool, CA
How long is your commute? My phantom braking is predictable. Happens when there is slower traffic on the right. I'm ready with the electron peddle to accelerate. A video of your phantom braking would be interesting.

What kind of Toyota does your wife have? Does it have autosteer?
It varies depending on the project I’m on. Currently it’s about 80 miles round trip. Mine happens when cars are coming the other way or when surfaces change from asphalt to concrete. I’ll work on a dash cam video. Never actually pulled any footage from the car.

My wife has the new 2021 Venza Limited hybrid. I hate to admit it, but it’s nicer in many aspects than the Model 3. It has what I’d call auto pilot lite. It steers down most gentle roads pretty good, but the CC is definitely superior.
9883B27B-F7BC-4062-9FD4-5C51E74D1116.jpeg
 

ssrobinson

Member
Jun 10, 2021
36
39
Lawrence, Kansas
All the safety settings are turned off in mine, including emergency braking. The car phantom brakes several times during my commute. The TACC is terrible. More of a safety hazard for me, as it will slam on the brakes with someone behind me. All you can do is roll the window down, wave and apologize.

My wife drives a new Toyota with all the camera and radar assisted tech and it’s cruise control works fantastic. It does exactly what you want adaptive CC to do—it moves you perfectly with the flow of traffic and keeps you a safe distance from the cars around you.
that's discouraging. My plan was to try and turn the "nannies" off and just see if it would work like normal cruise control, but I guess that's out too. :-(
 

GoldCountryCA

Ordered 5/2, M3LR wh/bl/18”
May 5, 2021
85
101
Cool, CA
that's discouraging. My plan was to try and turn the "nannies" off and just see if it would work like normal cruise control, but I guess that's out too. :-(
The emergency braking has to be shut off every trip. It reverts to ON when you park. Not that it matter much, as it will phantom brake either way.
 
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cwerdna

Active Member
Jul 11, 2012
3,695
2,767
SF Bay Area, CA
All the safety settings are turned off in mine, including emergency braking. The car phantom brakes several times during my commute. The TACC is terrible. More of a safety hazard for me, as it will slam on the brakes with someone behind me. All you can do is roll the window down, wave and apologize.
If you truly believe it's a safety hazard, I'd file safety complaint at Report a Safety Problem | NHTSA after you've given Tesla an opportunity to resolve it and they made their attempt(s) or lack of...

For those outside the US, ditto but with your country's equivalent auto safety agency...

Enough legitimate reports could force Tesla to take action.
 

SalisburySam

Member
Aug 11, 2018
322
394
Salisbury, North Carolina
Hi I also have had multiple phantom braking events and at the weekend on a 500 mile drive it happened 4 times. Twice on the crowded M6 in rain at 70mph. There was no valid reason for the braking and it could have resulted in a very serious accident. I have reported this to Tesla and due to their “ relaxed” response I have officially reported the incident to the DVSA in the U.K. see Vehicle Safety Defect Report | DVSA

I would strongly urge U.K. Tesla owners that experience phantom braking to report it to the DVSA. This issue of phantom braking is very annoying and dangerous and really spoils an amazing car. My software version is 2021.12.25.7. I have read that newer software is more reliable but so far Tesla have refused to update my software.
Newer software is not necessarily more reliable in this case. I had phantom braking on 2021.12.25.7, and I still have it on 2021.24.3. I’ve had it since I got the car three years ago and have had it through 75 firmware updates. Apparently not a huge concern for Tesla, just for those who experience it. Hate it. Phantom braking ruins an otherwise wonderful ownership and driving experience.
 

musesum

New Member
Sep 6, 2021
1
3
santa cruz, ca
Newer software is not necessarily more reliable in this case. I had phantom braking on 2021.12.25.7, and I still have it on 2021.24.3. I’ve had it since I got the car three years ago and have had it through 75 firmware updates. Apparently not a huge concern for Tesla, just for those who experience it. Hate it. Phantom braking ruins an otherwise wonderful ownership and driving experience.
I rented a new Model Y for a week. Phantom braking for slight rises and passing trucks. Distance margin kept downgrading. On the way to Wilcox, warning to stay under 65 MPH to reach destination -- in a 75 zone! I had to draft a Semi to make it. Had 6 miles to spare. And while it may be a non-sequitur for this thread, the one time veering off into the left shoulder during didn't help. I put off buying a Tesla until now. Am a big fan. Or was. Now, I'll wait and see for a couple years.
 

smogne41

Member
Jun 13, 2019
180
364
Pennsylvania
Phantom breaking was the reason I elected to not buy AP in 2018 when we got our 3. Back then if you did not buy AP you got 'dumb' cruise control, but if you upgraded to AP there was no way to get 'dumb' curse back. Really sad this is still such a huge problem, and I feel bad for all you new owners who never even had a choice. Honestly doubt I would buy a new Tesla right now if I had to replace my current one, since a working and reliable cruise control is a feature I expect (and use a lot).

They have the code for 'dumb' cruise already in the cars, but the egos at the company just don't want to give you the choice to use it since it might make their precious self-driving tech look bad if lots of people elected to turn it off.
 

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