One of the biggest complaints critics and enthusiasts alike have of modern car design is interior designers’ obsession with replacing every physical button with a digital one. Now, Tesla owners can strike back with the Ctrl-Bar.
Developed by Greenmission, an independent aftermarket designer, the simple accessory is a slim bar that can be added to the Model Y or Model 3’s infotainment screen. With two knobs and four programmable buttons, the product adds physical buttons to Tesla’s entirely touch-sensitive screen.
“We understood there are key solutions that could enhance the driving experience for every driver. Ctrl-Bar gives users the quick-access, tactile response that can only be achieved by physical buttons,” Greenmission writes on its Indiegogo page. “Ctrl-Bar attaches securely to the bottom of the main center screen. The premium black glass finish blends perfectly with the screen bezel.”
Read: This Guy Has A Game Boy Boost Gauge For His Subaru STI And You Can Too
The four buttons can be programmed to serve a variety of purposes, potentially operating the seat heaters, the defroster, Homelink, your garage door, turning on Dog Mode, and doing much more. The bar also comes with multicolor LED lighting for your vehicle’s foot wells, over-the-air-updates, and a paid radar detection function.
The two knobs, meanwhile, are designed specifically to control the HVAC system and turn to change the temperature inside the cabin. They work, though, by connecting to your phone via Bluetooth and work through a Greenmission app, which what actually controls the vehicle’s accessories using the Tesla API.
While controlling a Tesla through an app is nothing new, it does mean, the company concedes, that there is a bit of lag between the knob turning and the temperature changing. To combat that, the Ctrl-Bar has a screen that displays the temperature change in real time, and then makes the change on the infotainment screen once you’ve stopped interacting with the bar.
That, the company says, helps combat latency, though that may also be affected by your connection to the internet, which the Ctrl-Bar requires. It is powered, meanwhile, by a hidden cable that draws power through one of the vehicle’s USB ports. Although that’s less convenient than, say, if Tesla had hardwired some of these features in, it’s a pretty nifty (and clean-looking) way to retrofit these functionalities.
With a goal of raising $27,216 (and $18,000 in funding already secured), the accessory is well on its way to becoming an actual product. When it does become available, Greenmission expects to sell it for $260.