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Two of the new Tesla models on a road in front of snow-capped mountains.

A new Tesla model has received some stinging criticism. This is why…

What happens when you remove a key feature of your product to save costs?

Answer: it doesn’t work as well.

At least, that’s the verdict from some drivers of Tesla’s new Model 3 Highland, which touched down for delivery to customers in Europe last week.

A quick scan of reddit suggests plenty were pleased with some aspects of the model, including how quiet it is on the road and how the loud sound system remains.

But Tesla’s decision to remove ultrasonic parking sensors a topic first raised by the media earlier this year has yielded predictable results.

While previous models relied on ultrasonic parking sensors to warn drivers of approaching obstacles, the new Model 3 Highland instead relies exclusively on the camera-based Tesla Vision autopilot system.


Close up of a person driving a Tesla car.

The new Tesla model has received plenty of criticism. Credit: Jenny Ueberberg on Unsplash.

New Tesla Model Causing Problems

It’s a move Tesla says is warranted because the cameras “perform better” in automatic emergency braking situations, but one critics claim is all about cutting costs and boosting the company’s share price.

And the decision hasn’t gone down well with everyone with some Model 3 Highland recipients claiming the new camera-based system has been giving them bad advice.

“The parking ‘sensors’ are rubbish,” wrote one disgruntled redditor.

“One time they’re yelling STOP when I’m driving straight down off a ramp to my garage… (with) absolutely nothing in front of me.

“The next time it says I have 50 centimetres clearance when in reality it’s 10. Once you know it does that, how can you ever trust it again?”

Other users complained that the new Tesla model’s front-facing cameras fogged up in cold weather an obvious problem in Europe, where temperatures regularly drop below freezing in winter.

Tesla itself is hoping a software fix can help resolve the fog issue, but it’s not a great look for a company whose CEO Elon Musk has spent the past year trying desperately to monetise social media platform, X (formerly Twitter).

Does all this mean a rocky road ahead for Tesla? That might depend on what the front-facing camera is telling you!


Close up of the front exterior of a red Tesla vehicle.

Some Tesla owners are seeing red. Credit: Vlad Tchompalov on Unsplash.

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