Tesla has now released what might just be its best over-the-air software update yet. Yep, the long-awaited Track Mode - which first came to light a few months ago - is now ready for customers.
The feature, which Tesla says is “designed specifically for use on closed autocross circuits and racetracks,” will make chucking the back end out incredibly easy. The ‘Vehicle Dynamics Controller’ works out what the driver is trying to achieve, and plays with the bias between the front and rear motors as it sees fit.
It’s best thought of as a virtual driveline, which will see more torque coming out of the rear axle motor in order to ‘rotate’ the car during cornering, switching to a front bias if that slide becomes ‘excessive’. In other words, it will, in theory, let you pull off massive drifts while minimising the risk of the car spinning out.
Other elements of Track Mode include increased regenerative braking, which both extends the life of the conventional braking system and tops up the battery with more energy, and better cooling. The latter is achieved by “proactively” dipping the battery and drive unit temperatures both in preparation for your track session and immediately after, and upping the capacity of the refrigerant system “by overclocking the AC compressor into higher speed ranges.”
Finally, there’s a torque vectoring system which mimics the operation of a limited-slip differential through small brake and motor inputs.
Tesla - which this week announced Robyn Denholm as its new chair of the board - said that it will “continue to improve and enhance Track Mode over time with future over-the-air updates.”