Tesla's cars can now accelerate ... more slowly

Tesla releases Model 3
Tesla releases Model 3

First there was "Insane" mode that made Tesla Model S and X electric vehicles accelerate really fast. Then there was "Ludicrous" mode, which made them accelerate even faster.

Now with its latest software update, Tesla has come out with something that sounds even crazier: "Chill" mode, which makes the car accelerate more slowly.

It's not often that an automaker goes out of its way to make its cars slower than they already are. But Tesla realized that some customers don't want to blast off every time they touch the accelerator pedal.

Related: Does Tesla have enough cash to fix Model 3 production woes?

"Chill" mode is for those who find Tesla's normal acceleration to be a little too abrupt.

It is not clear how much slower the car accelerates under "Chill" mode, and Tesla declined to say. But someone operating in "Chill" mode probably doesn't care all that much, anyway.

Tesla calls the new mode "ideal for smoother driving and a gentler ride for your passengers."

A Tesla Model S running in Ludicrous mode has been clocked going from zero to 60 miles an hour in under 2.3 seconds, making it quicker, by that measure, than Ferraris and Lamborghinis.

Tesla's software updates happen, like smartphone updates, "over the air" while customers' cars are parked. Owners were alerted to the new feature when they started their cars after this latest update.

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