According to Brinkwire, the Tesla Model Y is switching CPU models from an Intel-branded chip to an AMD Ryzen processor for the car’s infotainment system. For now, the new AMD-equipped Model Y’s are only available for buyers in China.
Over the past several years, Tesla has worked with all three major semiconductor manufacturers, including Nvidia, Intel, and AMD. Tesla originally used Nvidia SoC’s in its older vehicles, but switched three years ago to Intel Atom CPUs for the infotainment centers in Model 3 and newer versions of the Model X and Model S.
Tesla has already switched the Model S and X to AMD’s chips, and now appears to be completing the transition with the Model Y. Unfortunately, we don’t know why Tesla decided to switch teams to AMD, which at first glance appears to be a strange move given AMD’s reliance on TSMC for semiconductor supply.
This is especially true given TSMC’s supply constraints on its current 7nm products that AMD heavily relies on for nearly all its current products. Simply put, there’s so much demand for TSMC’s 7nm silicon from its clients that it’s contributing to the ongoing shortages.
Despite this, Tesla’s move to AMD could potentially be based on performance. We’ve already seen a Tesla Model S and Model X equipped with a seriously powerful AMD Ryzen APU powered by RDNA2 graphics during the Computex 2021 event.
In fact, Elon Musk claimed you’d be able to play The Witcher 3 and Cyberpunk 2077 inside the AMD-powered infotainment systems of these new cars — they’re that powerful.
For now at least, the AMD-powered Tesla Model Y’s are exclusive to China, with no word on if the processor changes will make it to the United States or other regions. We do know that the AMD-powered infotainment systems are only included in the performance versions of the Model Y, with all other versions still using the Intel chips.
So even if these fancy AMD-powered Model Y’s make it to other regions, don’t expect every car to come with the new hardware, especially with the current shortages.
Tesla has reportedly switched the chip manufacturer for its Model Y infotainment system from Intel to AMD, bringing it in line with the Model S and X. It appears that the Ryzen chip-sporting Model Y is only being made available to buyers in China right now, though it’s unclear if it will expand to other regions.
Electrek reports that the Shanghai-made 2022 Tesla Model Y Performance has seen several upgrades, including changing the chip in its infotainment system from the current Intel one to an AMD Ryzen alternative.
We don’t know if the Model Y’s new chip will be the same Ryzen APU found in the Tesla Model S and Model X, but it seems likely. At this year’s Computex event, Tesla revealed the APU with its Navi 23-based graphics allowed games such as Cyberpunk 2077 and The Witcher 3 to be played on the infotainment system. Tesla also said it offers the same “10 teraflops” of performance as the PlayStation 5.
Vehicle manufacturers have been heavily impacted by the global chip shortage, with several automakers forced to close down production at plants temporarily. Intel, which has its own fabs, hasn’t been as badly affected by the shortage as AMD, but it could be that Tesla wants to use more than one supplier to try and lessen the impact of the crisis. The Ryzen option is probably cheaper than Intel’s, too.
In addition to the new chip, those who’ve taken delivery of a Tesla Model Y Performance in China have noted the 16V lithium-ion auxiliary battery and laminated glass at the front and rear of the crossover EV.
In other Tesla news, fans of CEO Elon Musk can now buy a bust and iPhone 13 Pro from Caviar that immortalize the billionaire, priced at $3,220 and $6,760, respectively.