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Tesla’s fart mode is a real gem



It looks so sophisticated and grown-up in the Tesla Model 3. Until you open "emissions testing mode."
It looks so sophisticated and grown-up in the Tesla Model 3. Until you open “emissions testing mode.”

Image: Chameleons Eye/REX/Shutterstock

Old-school toilet humor • Great for pranks • High-quality and realistic sounds

Gross • Immature • Potentially offensive

Bathroom humor will never go out of style. Tesla’s fart mode will have you and your unwitting passengers laughing, or cringing and then laughing. It’s a gas.

I took my first Tesla Model 3 test drive this week and all I wanted to do was make the all-electric car fart.

The interior of the Model 3 electric sedan is impressive, with its extreme minimal design. It’s stark in the front part of the car — you’ve got the steering wheel with two knobs next to the horn, a gear selector and indicator control, and then the pièce de résistance: the tablet.

The Tesla 15-inch tablet looks and feels like a giant iPad nestled in between the front seats. This is where everything lives: your speedometer, climate control, mapping, the Autopilot semi-autonomous driving system, the radio and other music options, even the button to open the glovebox. At one point I saw a lightning bolt on the screen and had the sudden urge to click it. Without thinking I opened the charging port on the left side of the car. Luckily a “close” button was easy enough to click.

The tablet is also where the elusive Easter egg “drawer” is housed. Silly, fun add-ons like Atari video games, a drawing board, holiday app, and romance mode with a crackling fireplace, sensual music, and heaters blasting are kept in the secret compartment. There’s also a Whoopee cushion icon. This was the app I was after.

All those Easter eggs...

All those Easter eggs…

After getting a rundown of how the car works and what all the different buttons on the touchscreen controlled, I reached for the Tesla icon on the home screen. From there I knew I could slide open the  hidden tricks and games, including the newest app: Emissions Testing Mode, aka “fart mode.”

Sure enough, I could control which seats in the ironically emissions-free vehicle gave out a loud, noxious toot. Impressively, the farting noises really did sound like they were coming from the front passenger seat or the back seat. There’s a drop-down menu of fart sound options, all named for inside jokes and nods to other Tesla CEO Elon Musk ventures and interests. 

One of the seven fart options, Ludicrous (named for the all-out setting on some Tesla vehicles that can send the car practically flying), was the best. That emission option was perfectly juicy, but realistic — all while still staying in the humorous realm. It never got too disgusting. And (for now) it’s an odor-free experience, so it’s more than tolerable. If you can’t decide which fart you like best, there’s an option for random gassing.

You can also set the farts to go off every time you use the turn signal, which is peak ridiculousness.

The Tesla’s Easter eggs are what give the car a bit more personality. Even if a fart button seems juvenile, you have to crack a smile at the silliness and admit it’s a fun feature. Completely unnecessary, but a little something extra to discover, enjoy, and hopefully not unleash upon your unknowing friends.

Emissions testing mode is one of the tongue-in-cheek gems scattered through the car’s “interface.” In Navigate on Autopilot, the semi-autonomous tool that allows the car to drive with a driver still at the wheel and paying attention, Mad Max mode gives you the option to overtake slower cars on the road. It’s the most aggressive option on a sliding scale starting at “mild,” appropriately named for its movie reference.

In a more serious update, sentry mode is supposed to make it into the next car update after customer concerns about vandalized cars. That new feature might include a few Easter eggs itself. 

Fart on.

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