new look, better range prediction

A decade or a month after the Model S received the first over-the-air firmware update from Tesla, such updates for electric vehicles have increasingly become the norm, as a way to improve the product. once it is in the hands of consumers.

One such vehicle in the “software-defined vehicle” era, Lucid, announced the biggest milestone yet in its own live updates this morning. Called UX 2.0, it overhauls part of the interface and brings “dozens of new features” to every Lucid Air, according to the California-based company.

Lucid says the updates cover improvements covering “virtually every user touchpoint in the car,” including redesigned layouts for screen real estate, and points out that many of the improvements to the software version come from the feedback and ideas of the owners.

Lucid Air UX 2.0 Software Update

“With our integrated software and hardware engineering, Lucid has the in-house technical depth to improve our vehicles long after they roll off the assembly line,” said the company’s senior vice president of digital, Michael Bell.

Many changes apply to Lucid Air’s Glass Cockpit and Pilot Panel displays. Now both are “instant”, which means you don’t have to wait for them to start. The Glass Cockpit, Lucid’s fancy term for dashboard space, has repositioned navigation directions to appear directly in front of the driver, while the maps themselves have been updated. Alexa voice commands now apply to rear climate settings, and third-party apps offer “a more user-friendly navigation experience”.

Lucid has also added a Highway Assist feature with active lane centering, as well as adaptive cruise control.

Lucid Air UX 2.0 Software Update

Lucid Air UX 2.0 Software Update

And especially useful for those planning to use most of the Air up to 520 miles of EPA range: the Air gets a smarter prediction of remaining range, according to Lucid.

Micro Lens Array highlights now take into account other light sources in addition to other vehicles, switching to low beam whenever deemed most appropriate; and the system consults sensors to automatically level the headlight beams.

Lucid Air UX 2.0 Software Update

Lucid Air UX 2.0 Software Update

The Air now also gets locking and unlocking which is supposed to be simpler, more intuitive and more responsive. It also includes a defrost mode that combines defrost, wiper blade movement and wiper fluid “to remove ice that may obstruct the view through the windshield”.

A screen in an accompanying image suggests the update time may be close to an hour, so owners will need to ensure they allow plenty of time for the update.

Lucid says UX 2.0, which is free, has started rolling out to customer cars, in an initial phase, with cars continuing to get it over the next few weeks.