As we previously reported, Tesla has been updating its entire map engine since this summer. Not many Tesla owners currently benefit from those updates, which are only enabled in a select few markets for Model S and Model X, as well as all Model 3 vehicles.
Now we learn Tesla is still testing new map modules to improve on its maps and navigation systems.
Back in July, we reported that Tesla is working on revamping its maps and navigation system with its own maps using new open source modules from MapBox and Valhalla.
The new map system called ‘Tesla Maps’ was discovered by our Tesla hacker friend verygreen who was able to enable it in his car and gave us our first look at Tesla’s new map system.
Now he has discovered a new map module in Tesla’s recent 2017.44 software update called ‘Vector Maps’.
Like the previous modules, they are currently disabled by default, but verygreen was able to enable it to see what’s new.
The main difference seems that it enables a significantly more important zoom. He shared a few pictures to try to illustrate the difference. The first picture is the current maximum zoom and the other two pictures are of the same location but zoomed in with the new Vector Maps enabled:
That’s on the Google Map application on the center display, but verygreen also told us that the navigation system on the instrument cluster also appears to be “smoother and more detailed” than under the current version.
Like with Tesla’s previous map modules, we have no idea when or even if they will release it to the fleet.
When Tesla enters new markets, it can often take some time to enable its map and navigation applications in those regions, but Tesla seemed to have used its ‘Tesla Maps’ in those new markets instead, like Taiwan and the United Arab Emirates, where Tesla most recently launched Model S and Model X.
One thing is clear, Tesla seems to have been working a lot on its maps and navigation over the last few months. Hopefully, more Tesla owners get to see the result of that work soon.
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