Tesla Model S Owners & Service Manuals

Tesla Model S: Traction Control

How It Works

The traction control system constantly monitors the speed of the front and rear wheels. If Model S experiences a loss of traction, the system minimizes wheel spin by controlling brake pressure and motor power. By default, the traction control system is on. Under normal conditions, it should remain on to ensure maximum safety.

This yellow indicator flashes on the instrument panel whenever the traction control system is actively controlling brake pressure and motor power to minimize wheel spin. If the indicator stays on, a fault is detected with the traction control system. Contact Tesla Service.

WARNING: Traction control cannot prevent collisions caused by driving dangerously or turning too sharply at high speeds.

Allowing Wheel Slip

To allow the wheels to spin at a limited speed, you can enable Slip Start. Slip Start can be enabled only when Model S is moving 30 mph (48 km/h) or slower. Slip Start automatically disables when the speed exceeds 50 mph (80 km/h).

Under normal conditions, Slip Start should not be enabled. Enable it only in circumstances where you deliberately want the wheels to spin, such as:

  • Starting on a loose surface, such as gravel or snow.
  • Driving in deep snow, sand or mud.
  • Rocking out of a hole or deep rut.

To allow the wheels to spin, touch Controls > Pedals & Steering > Slip Start.

The instrument panel displays an alert message when Slip Start is enabled.

Although Slip Start is automatically disabled the next time you start Model S, it is strongly recommended that you disable it immediately after the circumstances that required you to enable it have passed.

NOTE: Slip Start can not be enabled when you are actively using cruise control.

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