June 20, 2023 – Tesla’s Full Self-Driving (FSD) beta software version is still being refined and requires drivers to remain attentive to road conditions, ready to take control of the vehicle at any moment. To ensure safety, Tesla has mandated that owners using the FSD beta cannot keep their hands off the steering wheel for extended periods. Failure to comply with this requirement prompts warnings and may even result in the system shutting down. Some owners may find this design frustrating as they believe they shouldn’t have to be so vigilant.
However, renowned hacker @GreenTheOnly, known for exposing hidden features within Tesla’s software, recently discovered a secret functionality in the FSD beta software called “Elon Mode,” named after Tesla’s founder, Elon Musk. In Elon Mode, the steering wheel prompts are disabled, and no vibrations are triggered when hands are off the wheel. Instead, the driver’s state is entirely monitored through in-car cameras to ensure they remain attentive.
Furthermore, Elon Mode adjusts the braking intensity, preventing abrupt deceleration from being too harsh. This mode may also include other settings that influence driving behavior, although these have yet to be fully explored.
@greentheonly, who has previously cracked Tesla’s software and hardware multiple times, activated Elon Mode while using the FSD beta version 11.4.3 and embarked on a 965-kilometer highway journey. Green reported a much better experience compared to previous usage of the FSD beta, attributing it mainly to the absence of constant alerts from the steering wheel.
Green personally prefers a more proactive driving approach, which the FSD beta does not fully accommodate. The introduction of Elon Mode allows owners to enjoy automated driving without being constantly aware of the shortcomings of the FSD beta. Green suggests that Tesla should position the FSD beta as a Level 3 autonomous driving system, where human intervention is only required in specific circumstances, similar to Mercedes-Benz’s approach, which could potentially be more appealing.
As for activating Elon Mode, according to Green, it can either be enabled by contacting Tesla directly or forcibly activating it within the software. However, it remains unclear if this hidden functionality will be made available to the public or what its final name will be.