Does Tesla Model 3 Navigation Show Traffic?

By Muhammad Hassan •  Updated: 11/10/22 •  8 min read

Remember the fantasy tales from your childhood where the protagonist can take the treasure but he has to beat the bad guy? I mean there’s always a condition!

The same goes for Tesla’s traffic visualization feature. Yes, you can enjoy it in your Model 3, but only when you have Premium Connectivity.

Confused? Well, that’s why we won’t be ending this article here. Let’s get into the details!

Tesla Online Routing: What Is It and How Does It Work?

The Tesla Model 3 navigation system is capable of estimating real-time traffic conditions to predict the driving and arrival times to your destination. 

In case there’s a delay in your estimated arrival time, the navigation system will find the best alternative route using online routing to save you time. 

Furthermore, you can set out the minimum number of minutes to be saved before the features reroute you.

Average Joe Reviews shows Tesla Online Routing in action in this YouTube video:

Well, that seems to help a lot!

To enable Tesla Online Routing on your Model 3: 

Go to Settings > Navigation > Online Routing and turn it ON.

Google Maps vs. Tesla Navigation: What Model 3 Owners Prefer

Unlike Tesla, other car manufacturers don’t bless their costumes with their own navigation systems. 

Instead, they use Google Maps to provide these services, which brings us to the question: Would a Tesla owner prefer it over the company’s default system? 

Since I found the community’s poll to be 50/50, we’ll need to talk about some facts about both navigation systems to reach a decisive conclusion.

Google Maps

That’s more like a photo!

Google Maps is way handier compared with Tesla Navigation because it’s not just limited to your car. 

You can set up your routes using a laptop or phone and then synchronize them to your Model 3’s navigation to save you some time before the trip. 

Also, you can set out custom waypoints, unlike the Tesla Navigation app that only allows waypoints with charging stations.

If you’re new to the Tesla ecosystem, you may not be comfortable with changing your previous map habits, which makes Google Maps a fair choice for you.

Tesla Navigation System

Although Tesla uses Google servers to collect map data, its navigation system is entirely different and is built around its EVs. 

For instance, it calculates your current consumption based on your speed and the road traffic ahead to predict how far you can travel.

Also, it has other features such as online routing and a trip planner to assist you with the best routes and charging stations throughout your journey. 

None of this is available in Google Maps. So based on this fact, the Tesla Navigation System is best suited to a Tesla owner, especially one who travels a lot.

Tesla Model 3 Not Showing Traffic: What to Do?

Nothing in this world is perfect, not even your Model 3, and that’s why you may come across navigation issues such as the map not showing traffic.

Sometimes a glitch may occur in the system, or it simply may be because you didn’t turn on the traffic display on your Model 3. 

Whatever the reason is, let’s discuss the solutions to it.

Enable Traffic Information

If your Model 3 isn’t showing traffic, make sure that the Traffic Information is enabled. To do that:

does tesla model 3 navigation show traffic
Credit to Tesla

While in Park mode, the icon should automatically pop up on the Model 3 infotainment screen.

Make Sure You Have Premium Connectivity

The live traffic visualization feature lies within the Premium Connectivity package, which is an add-on feature after the purchase. 

Not having Premium Connectivity or having an expired subscription to it can also make your Model 3 not show the traffic.

To subscribe to Premium Connectivity from your Model 3’s touchscreen, follow these instructions from Tesla:

  1. On your vehicle’s touchscreen, tap Controls.
  2. Tap Upgrades.
  3. If your vehicle is eligible, you will see an option to subscribe to Premium Connectivity.
  4. To subscribe, select Swipe to Purchase. Your Premium Connectivity features will be available once your vehicle is parked and has completed the necessary software update.
  5. If you don’t have a billing address or credit card on file, complete your subscription purchase in the Tesla app.

To subscribe to Premium Connectivity from your Tesla app:

  1. Open the Tesla app.
  2. Select your vehicle.
  3. Tap Upgrades.
  4. Tap Software Upgrades.
  5. At the top of your screen, tap Subscribe.
  6. Tap Add next to Premium Connectivity.
  7. Select the billing option. Then tap Next.
  8. Tap Checkout. Then confirm your payment details and complete the payment process.

Didn’t get it well? Watch this YouTube tutorial by Tesla How To:

That’s a matter of minutes!

Perform a Factory Reset or Power Cycle Your Model 3

If you have Premium Connectivity and traffic information enabled and your Model 3 still doesn’t show traffic, there’s probably a glitch in the system which can be normally removed by resetting and rebooting your Tesla.

To power cycle your Model 3, follow these instructions from Tesla

To perform a factory reset:

Still ambiguous? Learn through this YouTube video by That Tesla Life:

Super easy to do!

A Few More Salient Features of Model 3 Navigation

Besides showing real-time traffic, Tesla Model 3’s navigation system has much more to offer you. 

Want to explore some of its cool features? Let’s discuss them one by one.

Charging Locations

Imagine yourself in a new town or on a road trip and suddenly your Model 3 demands a recharge… No worries! 

Tesla’s navigation system shows nearby charging locations with travel time and travel distance to save you from trouble.

Not only this, but it also adds pins with icons showing status information about the location, allowing you to learn whether it’s operational, closed, idle, or occupied. 

To display charging locations on your Model 3’s touchscreen:

Trip Planner

Planning to take your Model 3 for a long drive? Then charging stops are inevitable, and so is planning for them. If you’re too lazy to DIY, take help from the Trip Planner.

This feature allows your map to lead you through the appropriate supercharger locations throughout your journey. 

In addition, it recommends the required charging times based on the amount of energy available at the charging station and the charging you need to reach your destination. 

To enable Trip Planner:

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Tesla Model 3 have real-time traffic?

Yes, you can enable real-time traffic on your Model 3 by subscribing to Premium Connectivity for satellite-view maps and traffic visualization. 

Is Tesla Premium Connectivity free?

Tesla Premium Connectivity can be purchased for a monthly subscription of $9.99 or an annual subscription of $99 directly from your vehicle’s touchscreen or Tesla app.

Does Tesla use Google Maps traffic?

Basically, Tesla uses Google online servers to show map-related information, but it has its own navigation system.

Final Thoughts: Does Tesla Model 3 Navigation Show Traffic?

For now, the Tesla Model 3 navigation system is just showing the traffic close to your location. 

The time may come when it starts showing the traffic far along your route, considering how quickly Tesla upgrades its features. But as of now, it doesn’t.

I have listed down every detail that’s enough for you to have a comprehensive idea about the Model 3 navigation’s traffic visualization feature and how it works.

Lastly, I’d say that yes, it shows traffic and has many relevant features, but it doesn’t guarantee a 100% flawless experience.

If you’re tech-savvy, you already understand that, but if you’re not, well, you know now!

Muhammad Hassan

Engineer by trade and writer by passion, Hassan is an automotive enthusiast who thinks EVs are the future. At TTU, he discusses the coolest features and products Model 3 owners look for -- so they can better experience their cars. In his free time, he enjoys tea, reading, and listening to podcasts.

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