New Tesla patent hints gear changes are coming to the steering wheel

A new Tesla patent re-imagines what the future of steering wheels will be like.

2 minutes & read time

Tesla is well-known for their out-of-the-box thinking, and while sometimes those kind of ideas can fall flat of their face, sometimes they don't.

New Tesla patent hints gear changes are coming to the steering wheel |

More often then not, I think Tesla's unique ideas have worked as the company has forced the hand of other car manufacturers such as Porsche, BMW and now GM to jump into the electric vehicle game. For this reason, it's a great idea to keep an eye on what the company decides to patent as it can give clues towards what it might have planned for future vehicles.

Electrek noticed a new Tesla patent for a steering wheel, and according to the patents description "An interactive user interface for a steering wheel is provided. A user interface is provided on one or more portions of the steering wheel. The user interface recognizes gesture movements made by a user thereon. The user interface allows navigation of a set of controls associated with a menu provided through the user interface based on the recognized gesture movements."

The patent also states, "The user interface of the steering wheel may additionally include indicators provided at a lower portion of the steering wheel indicative of a selected gear engagement of the vehicle. For example, the user interface may provide illuminated indications of engagement of Park, Reverse, Neutral, or Drive modes. Additionally or optionally, the steering wheel may include RFID detection and NFC activation functionality."

Judging on the above image, which has been taken from the patent, we can see that Tesla seems to be planning on bringing gear indicators to the steering wheel. It also seems that from the patent's description, drivers will be able to make gestures with their hands to interact with the steering wheel. Nothing is confirmed as of yet, but it's certainly an interesting step that Tesla is taking to bring a new steering wheel design it's future vehicles.

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Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science, space, and artificial intelligence news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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