Currently reading: Tesla releases early ‘Full Self-Driving’ mode with strict warning
First ‘beta’ version of advanced autonomy mode “may do the wrong thing at the worst time”

Tesla has begun to roll out the ‘beta’ version of a ‘Full Self-Driving’ (FSD) mode for its cars - but it comes with some significant caveats.

The software, which is now being trialled by a select number of ‘expert and careful’ drivers in the US, is said to enable Tesla drivers to “make lane changes off highway, select forks to follow your navigation route, navigate around other vehicles and objects, and make left and right turns”.

However, a notice that accompanied the update, shared by a Twitter user, warns that the software may have some teething problems. It says users must “not become complacent” as the beta “may do the wrong thing at the worst time”. Drivers are therefore advised to “always keep [their] hands on the wheel and pay extra attention to the road.”



They should, it continues, “use Full-Self Driving in limited Beta only if you will pay constant attention to the road, and be prepared to act immediately, especially around blind corners, crossing intersections, and in narrow driving situations.”

Tesla has yet to specify a date for the roll-out of the finished FSD programme, but judging from CEO Elon Musk’s recent tweet that the update will be “extremely slow and cautious, as it should”, drivers shouldn’t expect the software any time soon.

This is especially true in European countries, such as the UK, which have stricter regulations for self-driving cars than the US. Although proposals have been made to loosen UK laws from next year, Tesla’s self-driving software cannot legally be used in the country under current rules.

The new FSD mode will be downloaded as an update for Tesla’s current software, which allows Teslas to automatically change lanes on motorways, auto park and ‘find’ the driver in car parks. To pre-empt the update, Tesla will add $2000 (around £1525) to the cost of current software in the US, taking the Autopilot option to $10,000 (around £7625).

Tesla’s current ‘self-driving’ package recently came under fire when a German court ruled that its name - Tesla refers to the package as ‘Autopilot’ - was “misleading for consumers”.

Tesla has now been banned from using terms such as ‘Autopilot’ and ‘Full Self-Driving Capability’ to describe the current version of its autonomous software in Germany.


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The Apprentice 23 October 2020

The suggestion of removing

The suggestion of removing say 80% of vehicles and using an automated pool on demand would require a step change in working patterns which covid may have already pushed forward. Otherwise it ends up just like buses and trains where during the day there is over capacity and rush hours not enough.

405line 23 October 2020

Liability free for the owner.

Before this is done the manufacturers need to build a mock up of a full size city and test the system and also accept FULL liability for ANY accidents and injuries that happen for whatever reason. They have to undestand that driving is more than just turning wheels and pushing levers there is a personal responsibility factor involved as the practice of driving also involves other carbon based units also so either 100% in or 100% out that is to say once you implement autonomous driving in any vehicle the reponsibility for accidents rests with the manufacturer. Just to make it clear to others I have read and reviwed this seemingly crazy post, but it's a crazy proposition.

Jeremy 22 October 2020


You might well be right. But as someone who enjoys driving, I really hope you will be wrong!