There are a plethora of things that drivers must get used to after making the switch from ICE to EV. One of these things are ‘Over The Air’ software updates. These updates ensure your EV continues to run smoothly and give you the best driving experience possible. Here is everything you need to know about EV software updates.
Like your smartphone, your car’s onboard computer relies on complex software to manage your vehicle. To ensure everything is up to date and working perfectly, your car will require occasional updates to the software that is already installed.
Again, these updates are like your smartphone’s updates, and work using Wi-Fi or cellular data while the car is turned on. Your car will tell you when you have a new update to download on the infotainment system.
They usually only take several minutes, but some larger ones can take a few hours. If this is the case, you may want to consider putting your car on charge whilst the update downloads. The car needs to be parked during this process.
Your OTA update will affect a handful of functions. It will help with things such as bug fixes (like on a regular computer or smartphone), upgrade your infotainment system, update your navigation system, or even improve the efficiency of your EV.
Your car needs a software update for a variety of reasons. OTA updates stop your car depreciating over time, as well as reduce the need for manufacturer recalls.
Updates also protect you from cyber-attacks, as well as fix minor bugs without needing to bring your car to a garage every time.
OTAs are designed to be safe and secure. They use encryption technology to protect your car from being data hacked, and the updates are always protected by EU General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR).
This completely depends on the manufacturer of your EV. Volkswagen’s electric vehicle range tend to have OTA updates every twelve weeks or so, whereas Tesla release their software updates much more frequently – roughly every four weeks - on a rolling basis, so not everyone gets them at the same time.
Regular software updates come included with the price of your car, whether you finance the car or buy it outright.
However, there are options to choose specific updates to upgrade the performance of your vehicle aside from the essential bug fixes.
Take the Mercedes-Benz EQE for example – in the States, you can pay a fee of $90 per month and increase your car’s power output to as much as 80hp.
For now, in the UK, EV software updates are free.
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