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Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) Ups Battery Capacity... Again!

Home hacker may have let the news slip early...

Written by Keith Kohl
Posted March 8, 2016

Tesla's vehicles are well-known for being all-electric, with massive batteries instead of traditional engines.

The batteries themselves have already seen several improvements: last summer, Tesla began offering a new battery upgrade called the P90D, which increases the vehicle's range to more than 250 miles and introduces an acceleration function that creator Elon Musk dubbed, “Ludicrous Mode.”

Tesla P90DThis is an increase from the original configurations, which offered ranges between 100 and 200 miles per charge.

Tesla has said it hopes to see annual improvements of between 5% and 7% moving forward.

But if the latest word on the street is true, the company may have already outstripped that estimate.

Recently, one Jason Hughes, an amateur hacker and Tesla Model S owner, tapped into the code in his car and found a reference to something called “P100D.”

After such previous upgrades as the 70D, 85D, P85D, and P90D, there's not a lot of mystery behind what this bit of code might mean.

Understand, these numbers stand for the kilowatt hour capacity of each battery pack. So in addition to being an 11% improvement over its most recent upgrade, a P100D battery would hold 100 kWh of power, which is pretty damn impressive all by itself.

And you have to consider the real-world uses of such a battery. Not only would it further improve the range of a Tesla car, but would open more doors the possibility of a Tesla truck.

Musk himself has said before that an all-electric truck could very well be in Tesla's future, though no concrete plans have been made or announced.

It's far more important for the company to focus on scaling up its current production — lest it be left in the dust of its own market.

But we can dream.

In the meantime, Mr. Hughes is not facing any major repercussions for his hacking.

Tesla tech safety protocols detected the breech of code and apparently attempted to force Hughes's car to downgrade a step in software.

After bypassing the downgrade, Hughes tweeted Elon Musk to get some answers.

Musk simply replied, “Wasn't done at my request. Good hacking is a gift.”

Not only does this seem to condone constructive Tesla hacking, but Musk didn't deny any of what Hughes found in the code.

To continue reading about the next possible Tesla battery upgrade, simply click here to read the Motley Fool article.

Until next time,

Keith Kohl Signature

Keith Kohl

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A true insider in the energy markets, Keith is one of few financial reporters to have visited the Alberta oil sands. His research has helped thousands of investors capitalize from the rapidly changing face of energy. Keith connects with hundreds of thousands of readers as the Managing Editor of Energy & Capital as well as Investment Director of Angel Publishing's Energy Investor. For years, Keith has been providing in-depth coverage of the Bakken, the Haynesville Shale, and the Marcellus natural gas formations — all ahead of the mainstream media. For more on Keith, go to his editor's page.

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