Tesla MCU software update 2018.14.2 marginal performance upgrade

Tesla MCU update 2018.14.2 delivers substantial rendering and Autopilot performance gains

Apr 22, 2018 | by Iqtidar Ali

Now that there are two groups of Tesla Model S and X — one with the Old Media Control Unit (MCU) processor and the ones with the new 64 bit processor, the performance gap of the center screen and multimedia was huge as we covered it last month.

As previous Model S/X owners were looking at the new MCU’s performance, Elon Musk inevitably was hit by the question on Twitter ‘if it is possible to retrofit the new graphics processor to older vehicles’ and he answered with a ‘Yes’ in the following tweet with hint for an update (2018.14.2);

Yes, Elon Musk said it right, it makes a big difference as we can see in the video below where Erik tested two versions of the firmware software on two different Tesla Model S with the same old MCU (processor).

The thing to remember is that MCU on Tesla vehicles only controls the graphics, multimedia, maps and the touchscreen UI and not directly related to Autopilot as it uses another supercomputer processor the Nvidia Drive PX 2.

Surely HTML 5 test score bump from 174 to 304 is a phenomenal jump including other substantial improvements in the lag test and rendering web pages. The new update (2018.14.2) also seems to utilize the available bandwidth up to 840% which is an incredible feat achieved by the Tesla software team.

Several Tesla owners are reporting that the location maps are also very smooth and lag-free after receiving the 2018.14.2 firmware update.

Elon Musk did say that Tesla owners can upgrade the hardware to install the new MCU but this retrofit operation would come at a significant cost — according to Tesla experts a price between $3,000 – $5,000 would be a safe speculation.

Autopilot Improvement

Tesla owners are getting the fruits of Elon Musk’s decision of bringing the young AI scientist Adrej Karpathi from Open AI to Tesla as the new head of Autopilot AI and Autopilot Vision software. Tons of video reviews and owner experiences across social media prove that since the 2018.10.4 Tesla on-board software update Autopilot has improved significantly.

Following video shows how Autopilot with the 2018.14.2 is now able to handle lane change in a construction zone with omitted lane markings with ease that previously looked like a difficult task for it.

Tesla vehicles are equipped with an AI supercomputer that constantly learns by gathering data through on-board cameras and radars. Next layer is the collective learning by gathering massive amounts of data from the entire Tesla fleet resulting in the advent of a ‘Universal Tesla AI Driver’ with billions of miles of driving experience globally.

2018.14.2 update also includes ‘Chill Mode’ for Tesla Model 3 owners that enables a mild and smooth acceleration option, you can also enable Chill Mode on your Model 3 following these instructions.

* Important: We discourage excessive and dangerous use of Tesla Autopilot as it is in ‘beta’ phase at the moment and the human driver is solely responsible for any damages resulting from irresponsible behavior like the fatal crash of a Model X last month.

Iqtidar Ali
[email protected]

Iqtidar Ali is a long time web developer and now writing for his childhood passion 'cars' further boosted by the advent of electric vehicles especially Tesla.

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