Tesla last week officially unveiled the Model 3 refresh known as Project Highland for China, Europe, and several other markets where Giga Shanghai exports vehicles to (unfortunately not Canada). Although deliveries aren’t slated to begin in some of those markets until next month, the automaker has already removed a feature that has left some Tesla enthusiasts scratching their heads as to why.
After months of anticipation the newly redesigned Model 3 was finally revealed last Friday, and while there was no official mention of the new electric sedan featuring a front bumper camera, it was literally front and center in several of the images on Tesla’s website, and even seen on the online configurator. This feature was speculated to be coming with the launch of Project Highland based on an early teardown of Hardware 4.0 (HW4) which showed there was an unused port for an additional camera, which was later reported to be for a new front bumper camera that is also expected to come on the Cybertruck.
Front bumper camera confirmed for Project Highland Refresh Model 3!! pic.twitter.com/0KMZIhj8ll
— Bearded Tesla (@BeardedTesla) September 1, 2023
Less than a day after the launch Tesla appeared to have had a change of heart by removing the front bumper camera from all of the images where it was previously seen. As Tesla is known to do, the change happened without an explanation, leaving us to wonder why Tesla had made the change when they had months to prepare for the launch?
Bumper Cam has been REMOVED from all official Tesla sites… what is going on?! pic.twitter.com/8hfTa3Ejqw
— Brandon 🌎☮️🚗⚡️🔋 (@brandonee916) September 2, 2023
According to third-party companion app Teslascope (@Teslascope), citing one of their sources within the automaker, the change is because the hardware and software for the front bumper camera hasn’t been finalized yet. However not all is lost, and Tesla is reportedly hoping to have it ready in time for the first deliveries, but to be safe they decided to remove it from their images to avoid any potential confusion amongst the first owners.
As we noted, the front bumper camera is also expected to come on the Cybertruck. In fact we have already seen it on all of the latest builds coming out of Giga Texas, and we have even caught a glimpse of what it looks like when the feed from the camera is displayed on the screen. That sighting also gave us our first look at the Cybertruck’s ambient lighting, which also matches what was included in the Model 3 refresh.