Tesla will disable in-dash video games while its cars are in motion

The move comes as the NHTSA is starting an investigation.

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Tesla Model 3 in the desert
Roberto Baldwin/Engadget

Tesla is quickly responding to the NHTSA's investigation of in-dash gaming while cars are moving. The Guardian has learned Tesla will deliver an update disabling on-the-move Passenger Play. A spokeswoman for the regulator said Tesla promised the change after discussing the matter with officials. There was no mention of when the update might arrive, but it's safe to presume you'll have to park for future gaming sessions.

The representative stressed the investigation would continue despite the update. The NHTSA reiterated that the Vehicle Safety Act bars companies from selling cars that pose significant safety risks, including from distracted driving. The investigation covers roughly 580,000 Tesla EVs between the 2017 and 2022 model years.

Tesla no longer operates a public relations team and wasn't available for comment. The feature change isn't surprising, though. Inaction could worsen the consequences if the NHTSA finds Tesla was negligent. There's also the matter of competitive pressure. Mercedes-Benz recently fixed an error that allowed mid-drive video playback — it wouldn't look good if Tesla refused to follow suit.

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Tesla will disable in-dash video games while its cars are in motion