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Tesla Bioweapon Defense Mode now standard on Model Y

The system has been around since 2016 in the Model S and Model X.

If you're planning on ordering a Model Y, now you get a big ol' HEPA filter as standard.
Tesla

If you've been eyeing a new Tesla Model Y and you live in an area with above-average air pollution, there's some good news for you, and it comes in the form of a great big air filter. Specifically, Tesla is making its HEPA air filter and "Bioweapon Defense Mode" standard on the Model Y, according to a report Monday by Electrek.

Sure, something called Bioweapon Defense Mode sounds cool, but what exactly is it, and why would you want it in your car? The whole system is based around the same high-efficiency particle air filter that hospitals use. These filters are significantly more effective at removing airborne contaminants than your average cabin air filter.

Now, while Tesla certainly didn't invent HEPA technology and the name for its tech certainly follows Tesla's history of giving things grandiose names (Full Self-Driving, anyone?), given that its tests seem to have involved pollution but not actual biological agents. Still, it is definitely something that makes the Model Y worth considering for your next car, particularly if you suffer from extreme allergies. It's a nice concession, too, given the number of price increases the Model Y has seen since launch.

Oh, and if you're wondering why the Model Y gets this tech and the Model 3 doesn't, it's an issue of size. The HEPA filter cartridge is pretty big, so while the Model 3 and Model Y are similar in many ways, there just wasn't enough room in the Model 3 to make it work.

Tesla has allegedly switched all Model Y's produced at Fremont to the new system, so it should come with the HEPA filter if you order a new Model Y now.

Video: Elon Musk unveils the Tesla Model Y