Tesla Model 3 New Frunk Design Hints That Heat-Pump, Octovalve, Upgraded A/C & More Could Come Soon

by Eva Fox August 24, 2020

Tesla Model 3 New Frunk Design Hints That Heat-Pump, Octovalve, Upgraded A/C & More Could Come Soon

Featured image: @megangale/Twitter

Tesla always strives for perfection. Along with the development of new technologies, it's not surprising that the company also constantly looks to modernize its cars. The recent change in the size of the Model 3 frunk hints that Tesla's latest developments could soon be installed in new cars.

A few days ago, Drive Tesla Canada received photos of the Model 3's frunk from one of its readers. This Model 3 was produced in August 2020 and has a different frunk appearance from those previously produced.


Source: Drive Tesla Canada

Its main difference is its size: the new frunk is smaller. The width has been reduced, and it also appears to be deeper than the original design. The bigger change though is to the top of the frunk (where the grocery hooks had been). The plastic molding now extends much further into the frunk, giving more space behind and underneath it.


Source: Drive Tesla Canada

The extra space gained behind the frunk could indicate that Tesla may soon be implementing the new components that were developed and placed in Model Y. In particular, Model Y received an updated air conditioning system, heat pump and octovalve.


Model Y's heat pump
Source: Munro Live/YouTube

The most interesting part of Tesla's heat pump design is its local heating loop. The local heating loop allows the heat pump to get hot locally before opening up a valve to heat up the cabin. The design of the Model Y’s cooling circuit is also unique. “Applying the concept of a printed circuit board to cooling circuits allows you to achieve a very complex heat exchanger that you literally could not do with tubes,” Tesla CEO Elon Musk said about this.


Model Y's octovalve
Source: Munro Live/YouTube

The octovalve essentially powers everything that needs to be cooled and heated. Musk explained that the octovalve allows the Model Y to do multiple things simultaneously, supporting the heat pump’s function. The Octovalve contains a four-position electric stepper motor whose job it is to apportion liquid glycol-based coolant to various components in the car--whether it be the motors, batteries, power electronics, or other systems needing thermal regulation.

These improvements enable the vehicle to operate more efficiently. Thus, Model Y's range increased. Despite the crossover's added weight, which also bears a larger cross-sectional area, Model Y is still able to achieve increased range, about comparable with Model 3.

We can only speculate how much these components will affect the performance of Model 3. Since Tesla has already started producing cars with the new frunk design, there is reason to believe that the corresponding announcements will be made soon, possibly during the Annual Meeting of Shareholders. However, it should be noted that, at the moment, Model 3 has only received an updated frunk and the new components have not been installed yet.

Another Drive Tesla Canada's reader reports that he noticed another change. His Model 3 came with new headlights. In the photo, we can clearly see there has been a new bulb added to the side of the headlight.


Source: Drive Tesla Canada

However, no one else interviewed confirmed having the new headlights. It seems that, for now, the new changes may not have yet entered into mass production.

 © 2020, Eva Fox. All rights reserved.

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Article edited by @SmokeyShorts, you can follow him on Twitter





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