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Why did Tesla remove option to disable regenerative braking?

I'm asking here instead of directly to Tesla because their only Contact Us options were for solar roofs or calling a store and neither of them knows....

While test driving the Model Y I noticed the regenerative braking was pretty aggressive. I called the sales person from the car to ask if I could adjust it. He explained that unfortunately Tesla removed the option to disable regenerative braking in the October 2020 software update, and suggested cheerfully that it's a driving experience drivers adapt to. (Some context here, I'm used to regenerative braking from my Prius of the past five years, but I like the freedom of easily toggling it on or off as needed, and its resistance is considerably milder than Tesla's.) I found Tesla's regenerative braking to be so strong it was similar to actively depressing a brake pedal half way to the floor when the foot wasn't on the accelerator. In my opinion it was a fatiguing nuisance having to stay on top of the accelerator all the time. I know you can engage cruise control as a workaround but cruise is only useful in certain conditions.

I went to an Earth Day fair a week later because many makes and models of EVs would be there and I wanted to hear pros and cons directly from owners. One Model Y owner said he'd always driven with regenerative braking at the maximum setting anyway so it didn't bother him, but he felt sure there was still a way to turn it off. Then a woman, intrigued by the topic, offered to take me on a test drive in her Model Y and go through all the settings for regenerative braking. We did and both agreed none of the settings made much difference. Then she confessed that she can't take her best friend around in her car because the regenerative braking gives her friend motion sickness, and that she'd heard similar stories from others. (But she was still crazy about her Model Y.)

What do you think Tesla's rationale is for removing the option of turning off regenerative braking, especially when it could limit their pool of consumers? It's a deal breaker for any buyer who has to consider how many kids/relatives, friends, business associates, or other unknown future passengers it might affect. My only thought has been maybe Tesla wants to pump up their range statistics and didn't realize that it could make some people ill or fatigued if they suffer from motion sickness or certain disabilities.

Aside from that, I'm bothered a seller can change something without my permission after I've paid for it.
 
Solution
For those with a tendency toward motion sickness, the solution is to drive more smoothly - feather the accelerator, plan your stops further ahead, etc. Chill mode helps with passengers that easily get motion sickness.

To answer your question, low regen was removed in order to boost the EPA figures due to the way the EPA handles driving modes.

drtimhill

Active Member
Apr 25, 2019
2,398
3,102
Seattle
I've had the 2020 Y for 11 months now. It is possible, but quite difficult, for me to be smooth enough so my wife cannot tell. Full disclosure, she did get car sick in our Lexus NX as well, but it is worse in the model Y.
Does she look at her phone when you are driving? Looking at books/phones etc in the car can cause (or make much worse) motion sickness (really!).
 
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DanDi58

Active Member
Jun 22, 2020
1,615
1,281
Dayton NJ
I do like the one pedal driving, but even a momentary lapse and the whole car jerks. It's not easy to drive smooth.
On the contrary, I find it very easy to drive smoothly.... Yes, if you have to quickly remove your foot from the accelerator pedal, the car slows abruptly - like slamming on the brake pedal in an ICE vehicle. But in general, I love the one-pedal driving.
 
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avs007

Member
May 14, 2021
610
477
PacNW
On the contrary, I find it very easy to drive smoothly.... Yes, if you have to quickly remove your foot from the accelerator pedal, the car slows abruptly - like slamming on the brake pedal in an ICE vehicle. But in general, I love the one-pedal driving.
I just wish they changed the UI to be a little easier to read. Its hard to tell at a glance how much regen capability you have, becuase those stupid dots are hard to see when it's 6 point font grey on white.. Now that it's getting colder, sometimes it catches me by surprise when I'm approaching the stop sign in the middle of the hill, there is enough regen that I still need to apply pressure to the accelerator while going down the hill, but when I lift the accelerator completely, there is not enough regen to come anywhere close to being able to stop... It's not THAT big a deal, as it's easy enough to compensate, but it makes it so it is not very smooth. Especially annoying when the amount of regen you get fluctuates up and down on the same drive. For the past few weeks, I noticed it has enough regen for the first few stop signs going down our hill, but by the time I get near the bottom, I have next to no regen. My only explanation for this, is maybe the battery was warm when I left the garage of my house, but then it quickly cooled as I went down the hill, losing regen capability along the drive.
 
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smogne41

Member
Jun 13, 2019
340
747
Pennsylvania
Something I discovered recently, the S3XY buttons (S3XY Buttons) allow you to adjust regen level even on the newer cars that do not have that setting available. This is because the CAN commands are still present. Furthermore, you actually get multiple levels of regen available to select from (0, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%). This is only on the 3 and Y so far, but I thought this might be of interest to some here.
 
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Something I discovered recently, the S3XY buttons (S3XY Buttons) allow you to adjust regen level even on the newer cars that do not have that setting available. This is because the CAN commands are still present. Furthermore, you actually get multiple levels of regen available to select from (0, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%). This is only on the 3 and Y so far, but I thought this might be of interest to some here.

@smogne41 wow nice discovery! This might be a great workaround for anyone interested in that control.
 
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CorneliusRox

Member
Mar 3, 2021
187
196
MI
Something I discovered recently, the S3XY buttons (S3XY Buttons) allow you to adjust regen level even on the newer cars that do not have that setting available. This is because the CAN commands are still present. Furthermore, you actually get multiple levels of regen available to select from (0, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%). This is only on the 3 and Y so far, but I thought this might be of interest to some here.
This is incredible! Thank you for this!
 
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