Tesla CEO Elon Musk teased that its electric vehicles will soon be able to “talk” and backed it up with video footage of a red Model 3 that was heard saying, “Don’t just stand there staring, hop in.”
According to Musk, Tesla cars will be able to talk to pedestrians but also to vandals through Sentry Mode for “some epic robber confusion.”
It is not yet clear how the new feature will work or where the sound will come from. The sound bites might use the same speaker installed for the Model 3’s pedestrian noisemaker first seen last year, but the car on the footage has its windows rolled down and it’s not clear if the voice was coming from inside the vehicle. Nevertheless, hearing a Tesla talk adds to the fun factor of the vehicle. These can be sound bites played by from the car’s touchscreen or automatic voice prompts that can be set to warn nearby humans or just blurt out some phrases to make people laugh. Of course, the addition of voice warnings to the Sentry Mode of Teslas will help beef up the security of vehicles as the noise can warn owners or nearby humans that someone is about to rob or potentially vandal a Tesla.
With Elon Musk’s known interest in safe artificial intelligence, it will also be interesting to see if future Teslas will really be able to interact with its occupants or if such features can be integrated into the Autopilot and Full Self-Driving technologies of the Palo Alto, California-based car manufacturer.
Imagine a Tesla electric vehicle in the future that talks like Knight Rider’s KITT. This perfectly fits the picture of Tesla robotaxis with a butler-sounding voice prompt picking up passengers and earning money for their owners who might be busy. While these ideas are a long shot, they are not far fetched as Tesla has been working to perfect its Full Self-Driving technology and also making voice commands an integral part of its system.
Other features such as the mobile app with in-car search capabilities that the Tesla chief confirmed recently will also go well with talking Teslas.
As always, the light-hearted and funny side of Musk surfaced during the conversation about talking electric vehicles as he said the cars will also be able to fart a la Monty Python in the general direction of nearby pedestrians.