Welcome to the new world of the hyperconnected automobile, in which problems with a vehicle – or even with the wiring in a driver’s garage – can be fixed remotely, before most of us are even aware there’s a problem.
As reported by Green Car Reports, Tesla has released a software update to deal with a recent garage fire involving a Model S.
Naturally, Tesla instantly denied that the Model S or its charging system was at fault in the fire, which caused major damage to an Irvine, California garage (but no injuries, and only smoke damage to the Model S, thank goodness).
“We can say it absolutely was not the car, the battery or the charging electronics,” said Tesla spokeswoman Liz Jarvis-Shean. “The cable was fine on the vehicle side. All the damage was on the wall side. A review of the car’s logs showed that the battery had been charging normally, and there were no fluctuations in temperature or malfunctions within the battery or the charge electronics.”
The latest update is an “automatic charge current reduction” function. In the event of unexpected fluctuations in input power, the Model S onboard charging system will automatically reduce the charging current by 25%.
According to Tesla’s update notice, “This change is designed to help protect you even when a problem exists that is outside of the car or charging electronics. It should significantly increase robustness and safety in the unlikely situation that a home wiring system, receptacle, adapter or cord is unable to meet its rated current capacity.”
Source: Green Car Reports