New Tesla orders no longer come with lifetime access to satellite navigation. Instead, it forms part of a monthly subscription eight years after taking delivery of a new vehicle.
Connectivity features taken for granted on modern luxury cars – including satellite navigation – will now be optional in newly-ordered Tesla electric cars – after they clock up eight years on the road.
Instead, the Standard Connectivity package – which includes satellite navigation, Bluetooth, playback via a USB drive, and FM radio – will expire after eight years from the date of delivery, and become an optional extra.
In North America, the Standard Connectivity pack also includes SiriusXM satellite radio capability.
Tesla does not say whether basic functions such as Bluetooth and FM radio will be deleted once the free Standard Connectivity subscription ends after eight years. However, Tesla does say certain navigation functions will be removed.
“Without Standard Connectivity, access to some connectivity features, including those that use cellular data or third-party licenses, may be changed or removed. These Standard Connectivity features that may change currently include maps, navigation, voice commands and more,” Tesla’s website says.
Tesla has not confirmed how much Standard Connectivity will cost once the eight-year included subscription expires – though the upgraded Premium Connectivity pack, which adds live traffic, video streaming and other features, costs $9.99 a month.
The Standard Connectivity subscription also applies to used vehicles purchased (or transferred ownership) after 20 July 2022, available for the remainder of the eight years after they are “put into service… as a demonstrator or service vehicle”, or “delivered as new”, whichever comes first.
New Tesla cars ordered before 20 July 2022 will carry a lifetime subscription to Standard Connectivity – even if they are not delivered until well into 2023.
While subscription services are being experimented with in the automotive industry – including BMW, which recently introduced monthly charges for heated seats – Tesla is the first major car brand to make core systems such as satellite navigation a subscription-based optional extra.
The Premium Connectivity package, which has been offered as a monthly subscription since 30 June 2019, adds live traffic and satellite maps for the navigation system, in-built music and video streaming, an in-car karaoke app, and an internet browser.
All Tesla vehicles come with a 30-day trial for the Premium Connectivity service; after which time a monthly $AU9.99 fee applies.
A lifetime Standard Connectivity subscription is the latest feature to be cut from new Tesla vehicles; the included mobile charging cable for connecting to home power sockets was removed from newly-placed orders earlier this month.
Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he started his own website, Redline. He contributed for Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020. Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, from flicking through car magazines as a young age, to growing up around performance vehicles in a car-loving family.