If you just got a brand new Tesla, the last thing you likely want to do is rip up the interior or alter programming parameters… which might take a small amount of fun out of things for some. Alex Markley, however, has come up with a very clever hack for his automobile — or perhaps more accurately, a custom accessory — that provides some useful new functionality without modifying the car itself.
The idea here is that, since Markley’s Tesla Model 3 is able to output dashcam footage to a USB stick, he could obtain this data and do with it as he pleases. To accomplish this feat, he used a Raspberry Pi Zero W, along with a Pi Juice uninterruptible power supply (USP) to keep it from being shut down at the whim of the car. Power and data are provided by a custom cable, which breaks out power to the UPS and data to the Pi Zero W. It then acts as a normal USB stick as far as the car is concerned.
The new custom device now sits inside Markley’s center console, with an enclosure made from a modded Raspberry Pi case. As of now, the unit is working well, but as with any sort of hacked together project, there’s still more programming to do to enhance its functionality!