In the technology world, so-called 'Easter eggs' are surprises that have been hidden in films and video games to be discovered by viewers and players. Electric car manufacturer Tesla has created some of its own Easter eggs for owners to discover in its Model S's infotainment system.
Below, we give a summary of the best ones.
This Easter egg has been included in the latest v8.1 software update and turns the massive 17in touchscreen into a sketchpad. Once you've indulged in your artistic talents and are happy with your drawing, you're able to submit it to Tesla for judgement. Want to find out how to use it? Well, Tesla is keen to keep that under wraps for now - but if you think you can guess how then let us know in the comments below.
Trip to Mars
If you get bored of navigating around planet Earth, Tesla lets you turn Google Maps into the surface of Mars. Hold down the Tesla logo on the screen and wait until it pulses, then when it asks for an access code type in 'Mars' and you'll see the screen transports you to the Red Planet.
Psychedelic Cowbell Road
Have you ever felt as though your digital dashboard could do with a bit more colour? By activating the Autopilot function four times in quick succession, the colour of the road displayed on screen changes colour from grey to a bright rainbow, and a snippet of Blue Öyster Cult’s Don’t Fear the Reaper plays in the background.
Elon Musk claimed via Twitter that this mode is called ‘psychedelic cowbell road’, but it looks to us more like the colourful Rainbow Road circuit from the Mario Kart video game series.
Lotus Esprit Submarine
Elon Musk bought James Bond's actual Lotus Esprit submarine car in 2013, and it inspired a subtle Easter egg back in 2014 with the v5.9 software update.
Holding down the Tesla logo on the touchscreen for 8sec reveals the service access menu. Typing ‘007’ into the keyboard and heading to the vehicle controls menu will change the graphic of your Tesla into the Lotus Esprit submarine from The Spy Who Loved Me. Changing the ‘depth’ will instead adjust the ride height of the car.
The Meaning of Life
Another film reference from Tesla came with its firmware v7.0 update. Don’t be fooled by its name, this Easter egg isn’t a reference to Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life - instead, it’s a reference to the supercomputer in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
Tapping on the Tesla logo reveals the vehicle information page and the car’s name. Holding down the name of your car allows you to change it. If you type in the literal meaning of life, which according to Douglas Adams' book is ‘42’, your Tesla will change its name to “Life, the Universe, and Everything”.
Activating Ludicrous Mode enables the Model S to hit 60mph in just 2.8sec from a standstill, achieving 1.1g of acceleration force along the way. It also brings with it a little Easter egg.
To access this egg, drivers head into the controls menu, select 'Driving' and hold their finger on the 'Ludicrous' button. After several seconds, the screen reveals streaks of white lines to signify that it’s reached Ludicrous speed. This is a reference to the 1987 film Spaceballs, which is a parody of Star Wars.
Meet the Team
There’s a large team of people behind the development and production of every Tesla model, so it’s only fair that they have their own little Easter egg dedicated to them. Pressing the Tesla icon at the top of the screen will reveal information about the car including the model name, but press the centre of the model name for a few seconds and the screen changes to display a group photo of the Model S development team.