Since Tesla’s inception, the EV maker is known for building one of the most connected vehicles in the automotive industry.
Even the very first Model S vehicles, which went on sale in 2012, came with the ability to connect to the internet using a 3G network and WiFi.
And Tesla for its part has been putting this connection to good use. Tesla vehicles continuously get new features, performance improvements, and overall security and firmware improvements through an over-the-air update.
One notable example is the FSD Beta v9 over the air update which brings Tesla vehicles the capability to listen to sirens and alarms and recognize hand gestures and ambulance/police lights.
However, this seamless connectivity might be coming to an end, at least in some part, for early US Model S vehicles.
According to sources familiar with the issue, Tesla Model S vehicles that were built before June 2015 will lose their 3G connection in February 2022.
The reason being, Tesla used a 3G modem and sim card from AT&T in those early vehicles. And AT&T has decided to shut down its 3G operations beginning February 2022.
This means the vehicles will no longer have access to in-car connectivity features such as satellite-view maps with live traffic visualization, in-car streaming music & media, and an internet browser.
However, the vehicles will continue to get Important safety updates that will continue to be available over the car’s WiFi connection.
And according to sources familiar with the issue, Tesla will be offering owners affected by this issue retrofits for only $200. This is especially fiar considering the retrofit will require a mechanic to take out the MCU and replace the modem.
BREAKING: A source has informed me that due to AT&T shutting down its 3G network by Feb 2022, Model S's without an LTE-capable modem will lose connectivity features unless connected to WiFi. HOWEVER, Tesla will offer retrofits for $200. Affected vehicles are pre June 2015.1/2— Sawyer Merritt (@SawyerMerritt) July 16, 2021
However, the issue will also not affect any Model S owners who have upgraded their Media Control Unit since Model S vehicles that got the MCU2 upgrade already have a 4G LTE modem.
We will keep you posted as Tesla releases more information regarding when exactly owners will lose their 3G connection, and when and how owners can get a retrofit. Make sure to visit our site torquenews.com/electric-vehicles regularly for the latest updates.
So what do you think? Are you an owner of a pre-June 2015 Model S? How will losing connectivity features affect your Model S experience? Also, how do you feel about Tesla asking $200 for a retrofit? Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below.
For more information check out: Elon Musk Says Tesla AP Team Creates ‘Eerily Realistic’ Simulations & Ponders If Tesla Should Make A Game Also, see Tesla Boosting its Superchargers by 17%
Tinsae Aregay has been following Tesla and The evolution of the EV space on a daily basis for several years. He covers everything about Tesla from the cars to Elon Musk, the energy business, and autonomy. Follow Tinsae on Twitter at @TinsaeAregay for daily Tesla news.