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Tesla drivers are using bioweapon defense mode to escape wildfire smoke — here’s how it works


Jun 8, 2023
Tesla drivers are using bioweapon defense mode to escape wildfire smoke — here's how it works

The Statue of Liberty is covered in haze and smoke caused by wildfires in Canada.
Amr Alfiky/Reuters
  • Three Tesla Models come with “bioweapon defense mode.”
  • Using HEPA air filters and positive pressure, Tesla says you could ride out a military attack in one. 
  • Tesla owners posted videos of the mode in use amid thick wildfire smoke this week. 

Tesla added intense air filtration to three of its models years ago and drivers are once again finding them useful for unhealthy air sweeping across North America.

“Never thought I’d have to use this feature,” one Reddit user posted with a photo. In the comments, Californians chimed in that they’d found it useful during the state’s fires in recent years. 

Tesla’s bioweapon mode acts as an air pressure buffer on top of the usual HEPA filtration, similar to the positive ventilation used in surgical facilities to keep any pollutants out. 

Tesla made a demonstration video on how it works: 


“You can literally survive a military grade bio attack by sitting in your car,” Tesla said, posting a chart of its data to prove it. 

Tesla’s not the only automaker to include air-purifying HEPA filters, but they’re not common. Mercedes-Benz’ “Air Balance” system also uses them.



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