here’s our ultimate guide to getting the builder lingo right

Many Tesla owners use a language with some peculiarities, related to the specificities of the firm of Elon Musk. Do not panic, thanks to this guide, you could find yourself there with the terms and other acronyms used.

If after reading a few messages on a forum or elsewhere, you should no longer understand what the community is talking about about the Tesla Model Y or Model 3 in particular, this file is for you.

In addition to the language barrier that may exist between certain terms that come from English and are specific to Tesla, there are many acronyms used in France, which should be explicit to facilitate understanding.

So we will list below most of the terms that seem important to us to know, and which concern vehicles, functionalities, or even the network of Superchargers.

Vehicles and their names

While Tesla is well known for its four flagship vehicles, the Model S, Model 3, Model X, and Model Y, many variations of these cars exist. You will no doubt come across the following terms in several places, and it is important to know them in order to fully understand what is being discussed.

Tesla Model S and Model X

The Tesla Model S and Model X had for a number of years a designation that easily indicated the battery capacity. As of 2020, this is no longer the case. We then distinguish several ways of naming the brand’s flagship vehicles according to the periods.

  • A number only (example: Model S 85) indicates a single engine version. The number corresponds to the size of the battery used, in gross capacity (85 kWh for our example);
  • A number followed by the letter ‘D’ (example: Model X 75D) indicates an all-wheel-drive, dual-motor version (the ‘D’ standing for Dual Motor), with the number always corresponding to the size of battery used;
  • The letter “P” followed by a number (example: Model S P85) indicates a performance version, which is more powerful than a classic version.

Note that a Performance version can be all-wheel drive, as is the case with the Tesla Model S P100D for example (Performance, 100 kWh battery, all-wheel drive).

Tesla Model S Blanket

This convention disappeared in 2020, when Tesla has stopped offering multiple battery sizes on its Model S and Model X. Since then, the terms used are as follows:

  • Long Autonomy for so-called “standard” vehicles, replacing the 100D versions;
  • Performance for 2020 versions that replace P100D versions;
  • Plaid for the 2022 versions with three engines, and all-wheel drive.

Thus, the naming of the models already gives you an indication of their age, bearing in mind that the switchover took place in 2020 where the 100D and P100D versions gave way to the Long Autonomy and Performance versions, then more recently Plaid.

Tesla Model 3 and Model Y

Appeared later than the Tesla Model S and Model X, the Tesla Model 3 and Model Y benefit from a more homogeneous name. The current range is composed as follows:

  • Propulsion, for vehicles producing a battery of approximately 60 kWh, and a motor at the rear;
  • Long Autonomy, for vehicles producing a battery of around 75 kWh and two motors (these vehicles have all-wheel drive);
  • Performance, which have the same characteristics as the Long Range versions, but with a more powerful rear motor.

Of course, other names have been used depending on the year, but the two Long Range and Performance versions have never changed names. However, the entry level could be called ” Autonomy Standard Plusbetween 2019 and 2021, and it is to this model that the acronym ” SR+ “.

Tesla Model 3 Propulsion-3
Source: Anthony Wonner – Frandroid

Some use abbreviations for all of these models, including “LR” or “GA” for Long Range, “Prop” for Propulsion, or “Perf” for Performance. So don’t be surprised to read “TM3 SR+” here and there, to designate a Tesla Model 3 Autonomy Standard Plus.

Finally, some atypical models were able to see the light of day, in particular those called “Unicorn“, and which simply corresponds to a version of Tesla Model 3 Propulsion equipped with an old, more powerful engine, which previously equipped the Autonomy Standard Plus.

The Supercharge

The fast charging of Tesla vehicles is certainly carried out on different networks, but most often the brand’s Superchargers are used. Here you will find terms related to Supercharge, which will be useful for you to understand what each one is talking about.

  • SuC: corresponds to the term “Supercharger”, and can sometimes be written “SC”;
  • SoC: in English, this corresponds to “State of Charge”, to indicate the battery level;
  • V2: corresponds to a V2 Supercharger, which is limited to 150 kW of power;
  • V3: the latest generation of Superchargers, with a power of 250 kW;
  • BMS: in English, this corresponds to the “Battery Management System”, which is the battery management system.

Software options and acronyms

Teslas are computers on wheels, and many options are only software, but you still have to navigate all the options that are or have been available depending on the period. Nowadays, regarding driving assistance, we distinguish three different levels, which we detail below.

  • Autopilot: this is the now standard option at Tesla, which combines adaptive cruise control and steering assistance;
  • Enhanced Autopilot: In addition to Autopilot, this includes Auto Exit, Navigate on Autopilot;
  • Fully Autonomous Driving Capability: In addition to enhanced Autopilot, this feature adds reaction to traffic lights and stop signs.
Tesla’s Autopilot no longer relies solely on cameras // Source: Tesla

These driver assistance levels are designated respectivelyAP, EAP and FSD. These acronyms from English simply repeat the names of the options: “AP” for Autopilot, “EAP” for Enhanced Autopilot, and “FSD” for Full Self-Driving.

Note that in the United States, the “FSD beta” is very different from what we know in Europe, we also have a dedicated file on this subject.


Especially on forums and social networks, we find a lot of acronyms concerning vehicles and the Tesla universe. We list below the most common, and their meaning;

  • DC, for Delivery Center: a Tesla delivery center;
  • Frunk – Trunk: refers respectively to the front trunk and the rear trunk;
  • HW3, for Hardware 3: refers to the autonomous driving computer installed in Tesla since 2019;
  • MIC – MIUS – MIG: literally Made In China, Made in USA, Made in Germany. These acronyms are used to indicate the manufacturing plant of the vehicle;
  • OTA, for Over The Air: used to talk about a vehicle update;
  • SC, for Service Center: a Tesla dealership;
  • TA, for Tesla Advisor: person in charge of monitoring your order;
  • TV, for Tesla Vision: Tesla’s driving assistance system, based solely on cameras;
  • UMC: the mobile charging connector, which allows charging on a conventional power outlet. In France, it is sometimes referred to as “CRO” for occasional charging cable;
  • USS, for Ultrasonic Sensors: ultrasonic sensors, which disappeared from vehicles in the fall of 2022.

Terms that show up over time

Of course, having an exhaustive list of the terms used by the aficionados of the Tesla brand is mission impossible as long as it appears new frequent. Using all the acronyms and other definitions that we explained above,you should be able to manage to decipher the sometimes complicated languageemployed to discuss Elon Musk’s firm.

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