Skip to main content

Tesla Chief Designer Says New Model S/X Yoke Steering Wheel ‘Makes A Lot Of Sense For The Cybertruck’

Tesla Chief Designer, Franz von Holzhausen, in an interview with Ryan McCaffrey of Ride the Lightning: Tesla Motor’s Unofficial Podcast says the new Model S & X yoke steering wheel "makes a lot of sense" for the Cybertruck.


The refreshed Model S & X incorporate the boldest design change in Tesla’s history, at least, since the EV maker unveiled the Model 3 without an instrument cluster back in 2016.

Since the new Model S & X started customer deliveries back in 2021 the vehicles have been with unanimous admiration for their performance and tech.

Especially the Plaid Model S which has been setting world records as the first production vehicle that can go 0 to 60 miles per hour in under 2 seconds. According to Elon Musk, the Plaid Model S accelerates 20% quicker than gravity.

The tech in the vehicles has also been met with equal awe. The new Model S & X come standard with an AMD GPU on par with the latest gaming consoles such as the Playstation 5.

Related news: Elon Musk Promises Major FSD Update (v11) Slated To Bring Vector Space To Highways Is Coming Next Week

The new Model S & X also have active noise cancelation where microphones in the vehicle emit sound waves that cancel out road noise giving the vehicle a quiet luxurious drive.

However, despite the universal praise for the vehicles, there has been one area of consistent controversy, and that is the vehicles’ rectangular (yoke) steering wheel.

Most people’s initial complaint with the yoke is that Tesla literally reinvented the wheel. This means drivers have to retrain their muscle memory learned over years of using a circular steering wheel.

And refreshed Model S & X owners have reported the relearning process causes initial awkwardness when maneuvering the vehicle.

However, even for individuals who are able to get past the initial learning curve what makes the yoke steering wheel especially are the capacitive touch buttons on the steering wheel.

In the new Model S & X capacitive touch buttons are used to control most day-to-day driving tasks such as turning on the vehicle lights, turn signals, and sounding the horn.

Since the buttons are not physical buttons, people have found themselves having to look down for the most basic of tasks. On top of this, since the buttons are touch-sensitive, they get accidentally triggered when turning the steering wheel.

The dissatisfaction with the yoke steering wheel was apparently big enough that, since a couple of days back, Tesla has started offering a regular round steering wheel as an option for the Model S & X.

And with the production of the Cybertruck fast approaching, the controversy of the yoke steering wheel has once again come to the forefront following Tesla Chief Designer, Franz von Holzhausen’s interview with Ryan McCaffrey of Ride the Lightning: Tesla Motor’s Unofficial Podcast.

McCaffrey started out by asking Cybertruck “prototype has got a yoke. You seem to like them although you just offered the choice now with the Model S & X. Cybertruck production, yay or nay?”

“I think the Yoke makes a lot of sense, you know, once you experience it, it’s a great driving experience combined with Autopilot. It makes the whole user experience and interior cockpit simpler and cleaner. So yeah, we’re looking at the Yoke there too.”

Given the fact that Tesla recently switched back the default to a round steering wheel with the Model S & X and religated the yoke to an option, it’s surprising to hear Franz saying that Tesla is still considering a yoke steering wheel for the Cybertruck.

Especially considering the fact that Tesla’s post-apocalyptic truck already gets criticized for being too futuristic and unappealing to the average truck buyer.

Having said that, we still don’t have final confirmation on whether the Cybertruck will come with a yoke steering wheel or not. We will however keep you up to date as Tesla releases more information.

Until then, make sure to visit our site regularly for the latest updates.

So what do you think? Do you think Tesla should offer a conventional steering wheel option for the Cybertruck? Also, would you still buy the Cybertruck if the vehicle is only offered with a yoke steering wheel? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

Update on Cybertruck's new feature that are not announced yet.

Image: Courtesy of Tesla, Inc.

For more information check out: Tesla's Bigger-Than-Price-Cuts Story Is Happening Today at Giga Texas and Is About The Cybertruck

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.