Tesla has updated the account page on their website with some neat new functionality. Tesla owners can now give access to their car to additional drivers, simply by adding their email address.
Granting people access to your car usually means giving them your keys, like if you were going away on a holiday. With a Tesla, that key is digital, usually through the Tesla mobile app and that opens the door to the ability to simplify access.
When you buy a car, you typically get 2 keys with it and additional keys can cost hundreds of dollars. When we move to secure digital keys, there’s not the same limitation, with the ability to add and remove access as often as you like.
Providing digital access to the vehicle may also work well in business environments where employees need to access vehicles at different times of the day and don’t have access to the secure key storage area.
The process of adding access to your Tesla is pretty straight forward. Go to the Account page on the Tesla website, under Car Access, click ‘Add Driver’. You’ll be asked to provide the first and last name of the driver, as well as an email address.
For now at least, Tesla are limiting this feature to 1 extra driver.
By saving you allow to give access to one additional driver to use the Tesla app to unlock, track location and control settings on the car specified above
That person receives 2 emails. One to notify them of the access they just received, complete with a photo of the car and links to download the Mobile app on Android and iOS. The second email contains a link to set their account password.
With the Tesla mobile app installed on their phone, it’s just a matter of signing in with the credentials created.
Being able to digitally grant access to your car is a really great option and I’d expect Tesla to add different options in the future. Right now, giving access to someone gives them full control, but in the future, I could see Tesla enabling levels of access, like not being able to open the glovebox, or restricting a driver to a max speed of 110km.
Removing a driver is just as easy, just log into the account page, click Remove Driver and another email is sent to notify the driver they no longer have access to your vehicle.
This flexibility in vehicle access also lays the ground work necessary for sharing your vehicle when the Tesla fleet launches. Right now, access changes are manual, but enrolling your car in the Tesla fleet, would essentially give Tesla access to issue and remove access to your vehicle on your behalf.
Being part of the fleet will allow your car to go pickup and drop off passengers (Uber without the driver) and make you money. In the future, we should expect further improvements to the website to include items like a log of the trips taken, the income earned etc.
Again, it’s likely this level of access would be appropriate for passengers, meaning they could get in, maybe select music on Spotify, adjust the climate control, but not configure vehicle settings.