Tesla’s experiment of forcing the steering yoke on their customers seems to have come to an end, at least for now. The EV maker has restored the wheel on the build pages of its Model S and Model X, and buyers can now opt for the practical, fault-free, time-tested steering method instead of one that’s objectively unsafe and confusing but looks cool to nerds.
This discovery was made by Electrek, rather than announced by Tesla, which tracks; it’s not like the automaker to admit its mistakes. Configuring a Model S or X right now presents the choice of a wheel or yoke, with no extra charge for either. Though, if you click on the “Feature Details” button, Tesla will still try to sell you on the latter, declaring that the yoke makes a Tesla “the best car to be driven in.” The reason is never explained.
If you recently purchased a Model S or X and have regrets about the steering deal, you’ll also be able to replace your vehicle’s yoke with an official Tesla wheel starting in March for just $700. That may seem like a lot to some, but I’m honestly surprised the company isn’t charging more.
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Note that the steering wheel, like the yoke, still doesn’t have stalks, which means it relies on buttons for turn signals and thus becomes completely useless in hand-over-hand situations. Tesla, for all its misunderstood genius, still hasn’t figured out steer-by-wire (even though other “legacy” automakers have) and doesn’t adjust the lock-to-lock range for the yoke. That means you still have to turn it like it’s completely circular, like there’s always a rim near the top to grab onto. Let us remember this rare, inexplicable moment of clarity for Tesla, a moment its CEO said would never come.