Tesla 2019.32.2.1 Update and First Impressions

My phone received a notification that my Model X, Pensive, had a software update waiting this afternoon. Each of the updates I've received this year has estimated the update time at 25 minutes, while last year the estimates were over an hour; regardless the updates have usually taken less than 30 minutes. As I had a meeting in 15 minutes, I didn't expect to need my car until after the estimated 25 minute install, I decided to update the software in hopes of testing the new version on my way home.

2018.49.20 Update Available

2018.49.20 suggested 100 minutes, but took about 15

When I got down to my car 50 minutes later, it initially wouldn't open or respond to the key fob. Eventually, I was able to open the door and connect to the app, which confirmed that the software update was still in progress. Oddly, even though the center screen was non-responsive, physical controls such as the dials on the steering wheel and the interior door handles continued to function, as did remote control of systems from the mobile app. After about an hour from the start of the update process, the car finished powering back-up, and was ready to leave.

Update in progress

What an update-in-progress is like while in the car

Center display during update

The screen updated, but wasn't responsive.

First Impressions

Notably, the looseness of lane holding seen in 2019.20.4 and 2019.28.2 has tightened-up, aided by breaking before curves. The result is a much smoother and more natural ride than in earlier versions.

Landscapers

Autopilot complains about cars outside the lane, but didn't even notice the landscapers parked in the lane.

While 2019.32.2.1 has continued to not recognize parked trucks and trailers in the road, it seems to have increased sensitivity for smaller vehicles near the lane. This includes cars parked near the lane, but more obviously cars turning out of the lane. AutoPilot either isn't tracking the memory of the vehicle, or has been tuned to be more cautions, as 2019.32.2.1 both alerts and applies breaks as the vehicle passes cars that have turned out of the current lane and onto side streets. I've had this trigger for vehicles that are already completely out of the main road turning right, and fully crossed the median into the on-coming lane and proceeding down the side road on left-hand turns. The only situation where I can imagine this being relevant is when the vehicle in front of you is trying to turn to back-into a drive-way or performing a three-point turn, which happen infrequently when traffic is otherwise travelling around 30mph.

Otherwise, the current software version feels similar to recent releases. It continues to exhibit behaviour such as driving the wrong-way down Interstate entrance ramps. When approaching forks in the road, the vehicle is more likely to return control to the driver, rather than recent behaviours such as arbitrarily choosing a path, jutting back-and-forth, or continuing straight and crashing into a tree.

Intersection

Earlier iterations would drive straight towards the tree and pole between the road and side road.

Tesla advertised the introduction of red-light warnings in 2019.8.3, but I've never seen any indication that the car recognizes when I'm coming to a red light.

Release Notes

Lane departure options

New lane departure warning options.

Tesla has had a feature to alert (via vibration) when the vehicle was deviating from the recognized lane. Unlike many other modern cars, though, it hadn't supported lane-keeping assistance, where it tried to correct the departure automatically. This always felt odd, since this is a simplified version of AutoPilot, and when AP is disabled1 you're effectively driving a less technologically advanced vehicle than a Camry (or Impreza).

2019.32.2.1 release notes 2019.32.2.1 release notes

In addition to the lane avoidance assistance, the latest software release adds Norwegian as a language option. The new options to make swapping different sized wheels and informing the owner about software version availability are nice additions as well.

Update downloaded section

The update availability screen present since 2019.16.3.2


  1. e.g. because you were paying attention to the road, and missed the shake-the-wheel indicators