Is a Tesla Head-Up Display Worth It?

You can install a head-up display in the Tesla Model Y and Model 3, but you’ll need to use aftermarket parts to get this feature.
Written by Liz Jenson
Reviewed by Brenna Swanston
Specific Tesla models, like the
Model 3
Model Y
, have the option for a head-up display (HUD), which helps drivers get the information they need without taking their eyes off the road.
Teslas are known for their extensive technology options, including some very cool opportunities to improve your driving experience. In some models, an HUD is one of these options. But just what is this tech feature, and is it worth the cost?
Here to help you decide is
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Tesla head-up display: What is it, and do you need it?

Whether you see it advertised as a head-up display, heads-up display, or even an HUD, this feature projects important information onto your vehicle’s windshield so you can see it while driving. The display is projected onto a transparent screen so you can see through to the road beyond if necessary.
Depending on where you purchase this technology from, Tesla’s head-up display uses a projector to display the information you choose on the windshield in front of you. Options for the exact information on your display may differ among models.
Items you can project onto your windshield screen might include:
  • Your current speed
  • Vehicle battery life
  • The local speed limit
  • Navigation instructions
  • Phone and call information
  • Engine RPM
  • Your cruise control status
  • Vehicle status and warning messages
  • An entertainment menu, including Apple CarPlay
Additionally, your HUD often warns you if there is an unexpectedly reduced speed limit in your path or if your vehicle is experiencing issues that need immediate attention. This gives you the ability to remain safe and knowledgeable about your vehicle and surroundings without taking your eyes off the road and risking
distracted driving

Which Tesla models have a head-up display?

Unfortunately, Tesla doesn’t offer a head-up display in every model. There are only two Tesla vehicles that are compatible with this feature: the Model Y and the Model 3. And you’ll need to purchase your head-up display as an aftermarket part if you want it for either of these vehicles.
Presumably, Tesla has chosen not to include a HUD in any of its models because its CEO Elon Musk has stated he isn’t a big fan of this feature.

How do you add a head-up display to a Tesla?

Whether your vehicle is older or brand-new, you can add a head-up display to a Model Y or Model 3 Tesla. However, the installation process is pretty complicated, so you’ll probably want to consult a professional to get your head-up display properly set up.
Depending on the exact model you choose, you’ll likely need to remove the dashboard cover and a portion of your vehicle’s carpet to connect all of the proper wires to the proper outlets without leaving them hanging intrusively in your driving space. Performing this installation incorrectly can mess up your car, so having someone help you out is a good choice.
The head-up display system alone typically runs between $175 and $700, but the installation could cost you an additional $200 to $300, making the final cost between $375 and $1,000.

Which luxury brands offer a head-up display option?

While Tesla does not offer a head-up display, other luxury brands do. These brands include:
If you’re dead set on a vehicle with a built-in HUD, you might consider buying from one of these manufacturers instead. Just make sure the model you choose includes an HUD since some vehicles from these manufacturers may not offer it as a standard feature.
MORE: How to find vehicle safety ratings

How to use a Tesla head-up display

Using a Tesla head-up display differs depending on the HUD model you choose. Some might offer many different display options, while others may only include a few pieces of information.
Regardless, you’ll first need to choose what you’d like to see on your display. This might include information like your vehicle’s battery life, your speed, the speed limit, or maintenance indicators.

Is a Tesla head-up display worth it?

Head-up displays can be helpful tools to keep drivers safe while they're on the road. In many cases, drivers find that this feature is worth it for maintaining their focus on the driving task and keeping their reaction time as sharp as possible when the need arises.
With that being said, you’ll have to do some extra work to get this feature, including purchasing an aftermarket head-up system and paying for installation or working hard to install the system yourself. This means an increase in the price of your Tesla, which is already a pricey investment.
In short, this tech feature is best for drivers who want to invest in safety. It’s also best for people who are willing to invest their time in researching and purchasing the perfect HUD for their vehicle. Otherwise, you’ll be paying a lot of extra cash and spending a lot of extra time at the shop for an underwhelming payoff.
MORE: Holiday gifts for the Tesla owner in your life
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