A Tesla Model 3 driver was pulled over by a confused cop who thought his infotainment system was actually an illegally mounted computer.
To be fair to the cop, we can sort of see where he’s coming from. The Model 3 has a very minimalistic interior and one gigantic 15-inch screen mounted in the middle that controls almost everything about the car.
That’s right: 15 inches. That’s the same size as most full-sized laptops.
And there’s no instrument cluster either--everything on the Model 3 is displayed on that one 15-inch touchscreen. If you want to check your fuel level, your speed, or even turn on your wiper blades, you have to look over at the screen and start swiping and tapping to display the information you want.
The important car stuff (that would normally be on an instrument cluster) is displayed on the left side of the screen, so at least you don’t have to look over too far, but it can be a little jarring for people who didn’t grow up driving a Toyota Echo (which also put the important stuff in the middle instead of behind the wheel).
As cool as the Model 3’s big screen is, it’s also a little unsafe. You have to take your eyes off the road to tap and swipe in order to turn on the air conditioning rather than just reaching down and turning a dial. And we all know what can happen with even a few seconds of distracted driving.
So we can cut the cop some slack when he decided to pull over Jon Hall on September 29th for mistaking his Model 3 for some illegally modded car.
Kudos to Jon for keeping cool and calmly explaining to the officer than the screen wasn’t actually a mounted computer but was in fact a completely stock feature of the Model S. He even showed him where the air conditioning controls, music, and speedometer was located.
Satisfied and perhaps a little humiliated, the officer called Jon’s ride “slick” before going back to his motorcycle. The video cuts out a little too soon, but it seems that Jon was desperately trying to keep from bursting out laughing as the cop walked away.
With thanks to Jalopnik for pointing us at this amusing officer interaction.