Items tagged with autopilot

Tesla is the biggest name in the electric car market. And even though the percentage of EVs sold in the United States as a whole is in the low single-digits, Tesla is by far the best-selling brand led by the Model 3 and Model Y. One of the hallmark features of Teslas -- other than their overall performance and Superchargers -- is the optional Full Self-Driving (FSD). All Teslas come standard with Autopilot, which allows the vehicle to automatically accelerate, brake, and steer within a traffic lane. However, FSD ups the stakes with the ability to navigate from highway on-ramp to off-ramp, make automatic lane changes and even park for you. The latest FSD Beta takes things further by allowing Teslas... Read more...
With a name like Autopilot, you'd expect Tesla vehicles would be able to handle routine driving maneuvers while under computer control. However, as many have witnessed -- sometimes with deadly results -- Autopilot is still years away from being "trusted" as a fully competent replacement for a human driver. Autopilot's failings have been made abundantly clear by a federal investigation that was opened this week by the National Highway and Transportation Administration (NHTSA) into accidents involving Teslas and emergency vehicles. The NHTSA says that it will probe Tesla vehicles sold between 2014 and 2021 (including the Model S, Model X, Model 3, and Model Y) after examining 11 incidents in which... Read more...
After months of empty promises, we are finally seeing some movement with Tesla's Full Self-Driving (FSD) Beta v9 software. Tesla CEO Elon Musk repeatedly talked up the software, assuring multiple times that it would be available "in two weeks." Unfortunately, the software never materialized, which brought the ire of many customers that paid $10,000 for the FSD option on their Teslas. Finally, after all the hoopla, Musk was forced to respond. "Generalized self-driving is a hard problem, as it requires solving a large part of real-world AI," said Musk at the time. "Didn't expect it to be so hard, but the difficulty is obvious in retrospect. Nothing has more degrees of freedom than reality." Over... Read more...
Tesla owners are apparently losing their patience with CEO Elon Musk and his bold promises surrounding Full Self Driving (FSD). The feature is currently in beta, despite it being a $10,000 option on current Tesla vehicles. The FSD beta first rolled out in October 2020 to a select number of owners (as part of the early access program). However, Musk's repeated claims on delivering FSD updates to take driving duties further away from the driver have come up empty. On June 6th, Musk proclaimed, "One more production release of pure vision this week, then FSD Beta 9 a week or two later. V9.0 FSD is also pure vision. Foundational improvements are immense." Two weeks later, Musk remained silent about... Read more...
Up until this point, Tesla vehicles have used a combination of front-facing radar, ultrasonic sensors, and computer vision systems to enable its Autopilot self-driving system. However, the company announced this week that it is making a significant change in how the system works on its entry-level Model 3 and Model Y electric vehicles. Model 3 and Model Y EVs rolling off the assembly line going forward will no longer rely on radar. Instead, Autopilot will solely rely on the input of the vehicle's numerous cameras positioned around the car. The new camera-based system is aptly called Tesla Vision. Tesla explains the transition, writing, "these will be the first Tesla vehicles to rely on camera... Read more...
There’s no question that the Tesla Model 3 is one of the most advanced cars on the planet, thanks in part to its advanced EV powertrain, its heavy use of powerful computers for its Autopilot self-driving system, and its heavy software integration with numerous vehicle functions. Tesla is also a leader in the industry when it comes to over-the-air updates that bring new features or fixes for existing features (and in some cases, removing features altogether). That complex integration of software and hardware is coming to light in findings posted by “Jacob A” of SafeKeep Cybersecurity. Jacob describes himself as a veteran security engineer that has disclosed previous... Read more...
Imagine for a moment that you bought a used car from a dealership, and after doing so, the original manufacturer of the automobile came to your house and began stripping away features that do not come standard with the base model of whichever car you bought. Maybe you call the cops, or perhaps you take matters into your own hands (we don't condone the latter). Either way, it would be an unfathomable situation. Nevertheless, Tesla is under fire for allegedly doing something similar, only instead of physically removing a customer's radio or anything like that, it disabled features on a used car by way of an over-the-air (OTA) software update. These are not minor features, either—Tesla is... Read more...
Is Tesla’s new Autopilot software all it is cracked up to be? The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has learned (after many social media posts) that several Teslas with the “Smart Summon” feature have been in accidents. The NHTSA is currently investigating the claims and is in communication with Tesla. Tesla’s latest software update includes the Smart Summon feature. The feature is available to customers who paid an extra $6,000 for the “Full Self Driving” package. Users can “summon” their vehicle with a phone app as long as it is within 200 feet of their location and in their line of site. The vehicles will then navigate to... Read more...
Tesla released V10 of its software recently and with that update came an enhanced Smart Summon feature. The idea behind Smart Summon is that drivers can press a button and have their car come to them rather than having to walk to their vehicle. It's not exactly a feature that we'd call "necessary", but it's definitely a cool trick to impress friends.  The feature reportedly uses the smartphone GPS location of the owner as its target location. However, video of some users testing the new feature has surfaced, and it looks as if Smart Summon is not quite ready for the public. One video from David F. Guajardo shows the man hit the button in the Tesla app to summon his car, and shortly after... Read more...
Tesla is famous for its immensely powerful electric cars and their ever-increasing range thanks to advances in battery chemistry, motor design, and software updates. The company is also famous -- for better or worse -- for its Autopilot software, which allows the vehicle to take over the task of driving, and even changing lanes in certain instances. However, new analysis out from Consumer Reports suggests that one subset of Autopilot -- Navigate on Autopilot -- is somewhat half-baked in its current iteration and needs a lot more work. As we've previously reported, Navigate on Autopilot is the latest step towards full autonomy for Tesla vehicles. The feature allows a Model 3, Model... Read more...
Tesla’s wild few months of price changes, new trim introductions/deletions, and a new Model Y crossover is coming to a head this week with another round of changes. In a blog post that went up late last night, Tesla announced that it is in effect killing the $35,000 Model 3 Standard Range that it just recently announced in February. Tesla’s end goal with the Model 3 was always to get to the mythical $35,000 price point, and everyone thought that the time had come for the vehicle when it was made available to purchase in late February. However, customers never received the vehicles which were to have a cloth interior, a lower 220-mile range, and lack features like... Read more...
Tesla is moving one step closer to fully autonomous driving with the latest update to its Autopilot software; more specifically, the optional Navigate on Autopilot feature. With Navigate On Autopilot, you can punch in a destination and while on the highway, the vehicle will autonomously take you to your destination with prompts to commit to lane changes along the way. The way it currently works, if your Tesla wants to make a lane change, the driver must confirm the action before the vehicle proceeds to take the necessary action. The new update allows the car to decide for itself if and when to change lanes automatically – all without driver intervention. Tesla writes: Once enabled,... Read more...
The release of Tesla’s Autopilot Hardware 3.0 is just around the corner and the automotive firm has made a number of significant changes with this upgrade. A series of recent patents have confirmed that Tesla will utilize a new artificial intelligence chip, or “neural net accelerator”. This will replace the NVIDIA hardware that is currently used in the Autopilot 2.0 platform and should enable full self-driving capabilities in the future.  Why is Tesla working on a new AI chip? According to the patent filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, “Processing for machine learning and artificial intelligence typically requires performing mathematical operations... Read more...
California Highway Patrol officers pulled alongside a Tesla car cruising down the highway recently and were surprised to see that the man behind the wheel of the car was fast asleep. When they tried to pull the man over, they found he was unresponsive behind the wheel and suspected he was driving while intoxicated. The officers say that the traffic stop to determine if the driver was indeed driving while intoxicated turned into a seven-minute long ordeal since the driver was unresponsive to commands. The man fast asleep behind the wheel was Alexander Samek, a 45-year-old Los Altos planning commissioner. The officers had to outsmart the Tesla autopilot system to get the vehicle to pull over. The... Read more...
We're still not quite there when it comes to full Level 5 autonomous vehicles that you can purchase from dealer lots (or with the a few mouse strokes as you can with a Tesla), but we're getting closer. Tesla just announced the launch of Navigate on Autopilot, which is a further expansion of self-driving capabilities incorporated into its electric vehicles. Navigate on Autopilot is a new active guidance feature within Software Version 9.0, and is part of the Enhanced Autopilot self-driving suite. With Navigate on Autopilot, Tesla says that drivers will be able to travel on a highway from "on-ramp to off-ramp" with the vehicle taking full control of primary vehicle functions.  For... Read more...
We haven't heard much about the Tesla Semi in recent months, but development of the revolutionary electric vehicle (EV) is still ongoing and new interest in the vehicle sparked this week in a tweet. Despite the "production hell" that Tesla is currently experiencing with the Model 3 -- along with accusations of internal sabotage -- Elon Musk has given an update via Twitter on one peculiar feature that is under development for Autopilot: a Mad Max mode. Fully autonomous vehicles tend to take a more cautious approach when it comes to lane changes, leaving a few car lengths in between vehicles to have a margin for error at highway speeds. However, we all know that humans can tend to be... Read more...
On March 23, a Tesla Model X driver died after his vehicle drifted from its intended driving path and plowed into a concrete highway barrier. A subsequent investigation by Tesla determined that Autopilot was engaged during the time of the crash, and that that driver had not touched the steering wheel for six seconds prior to the collision. As is usually the case with these kinds of incidents, Tesla is off course trying to shift blame away from itself, and in this case is placing it on the deceased driver. This became even more apparent this week as the family of the deceased driver, Walter Huang, is preparing to sue Tesla for negligence in his death. However, Tesla is pushing back strong,... Read more...
Tragedy struck last week for a man and his family in California. The man was driving in his Tesla Model X when the vehicle struck a concrete barrier on Highway 101 near Mountain View -- he died as a result of the accident. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has been investigating to determine if the Autopilot feature was engaged, and now Tesla has now confirmed that it was in fact turned on at the time of the accident. Tesla wrote, "In the moments before the collision, which occurred at 9:27 a.m. on Friday, March 23rd, Autopilot was engaged with the adaptive cruise control follow-distance set to minimum. The driver had received several visual and one audible hands-on warning earlier... Read more...
If you are the lucky owner of a Hardware 2.0 (HW2) Tesla Model X or Model S, a new software update is beaming down to your vehicle that enables some new functionality. The Tesla 8.1 software update brings with it a number of updates for the Autopilot 2.0 system and adds some UI improvement for the vehicles’ massive display screens. With respect to Autopilot 2.0, many of the features simply bring functionality to parity with the first-generation Autopilot system. Tesla has improved Autosteer, which now allows the vehicle to steer on the highway at speeds up to 80 mph (previously, the limit was 45 mph).  For safety reasons, Tesla says that your hands must remain on the wheel at all times with... Read more...
Tesla is one of the hottest companies around these days, and it is continually adding new talent to help bolster its self-driving operations. And increasingly, Tesla has been picking its top prospects from Apple’s deep bench. Early last year, Tesla secured Jim Keller, an engineer that spearheaded both AMD K8 and Apple A-Series chip efforts, in order to lead in-house development of Autopilot hardware. This week, Tesla managed to steal the head of Apple’s Swift programming language: Chris Lattner. Lattner is settling in with his new role as Vice President of Autopilot Software at Tesla. He takes over for Jinnah Hosein, who served in the role on an interim basis, and will now go back to his full-time... Read more...
Tesla recently brought some New Year’s joy to owners of recently-delivered Model S and Model X EVs. CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter to announce that brand new Autopilot software for HW2 vehicles has been pushed out to roughly 1,000 vehicles. In case you were wondering, HW2 stands for Hardware 2.0, which includes all the necessary hardware for full self-driving capabilities. All vehicles made since October are HW2-compliant. Tesla described HW2 in October, writing: Eight surround cameras provide 360-degree visibility around the car at up to 250 meters of range. Twelve updated ultrasonic sensors complement this vision, allowing for detection of both hard and soft objects at nearly twice the distance... Read more...
We often hear about everything that goes wrong when it comes to Tesla’s Autopilot system that is featured on the Model S and Model X (and soon, the Model 3). But what about when it gets everything right and helps to avoid an accident? Avoiding an accident might be a common occurrence for Autopilot, but what about when it predicts an imminent crash — two cars ahead of you? That is exactly what happened in The Netherlands. You can see a Tesla Model X cruising along in the left lane, while the vehicle directly in front of it is speeding along seemingly oblivious to what is taking place ahead. However, the Model X sees all, and predicts that the traffic ahead is coming to a stop. What happens next... Read more...
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