For the moment, the beta of the Fully Autonomous Driving software remains only available to a small group of testers. Purchasing the expensive Fully Self-Driving option when buying a Tesla does not assure customers of being able to use the advanced driver assistance system beta.
Despite its name, in fact, the Fully Autonomous Driving beta is only a level 3 assisted driving system on a scale of 5. The driver’s attention is therefore still required, and the latter cannot leave the car driving alone only on certain stretches of road. The path to a more advanced and autonomous system has proven to be more tortuous than Elon Musk had hoped.
Fully Autonomous Driving beta would be available to everyone “this year”
But the entrepreneur now seems to think that Fully Autonomous Driving has made enough progress to hope to deploy the technology more widely. Elon Musk explains that the latest versions of the beta involve almost no driver intervention, which makes him say “We are almost there”.
And allows the entrepreneur to announce that the beta of the software should be made available to everyone who has purchased the option on their car “starting this year”. Available upon purchase, the Full Self Driving (FSD) or Conduite Entièrement Autonome in France option is meant to give customers a taste of the future – making their car a car with self-driving potential.
The option costs, in France, €7,500. Tesla has offered the Fully Self-Driving option since April 2019, but until then interested customers had to actually pay for an option that delivers largely inactive features. Some American customers with the option could nevertheless benefit from the beta of the software allowing them to take advantage of an incomplete version of the advanced driving assistance system.
Lately, customers have been waiting for announcements and especially a calendar on the sidelines of Tesla AI Day. However, the entrepreneur did not take advantage of the event to make announcements on the subject – preferring to highlight several prototypes of autonomous robots. Tesla keeps a certain lead on the question of Fully Autonomous Driving.
But the competition is also fast approaching. We can notably cite the BMW iX and its advanced driver assistance system which aims for level 3 autonomous driving in the short to medium term. The Volkswagen Group has also partnered with Microsoft to deliver an even more advanced autonomous driving system.
But these systems also have their detractors. One of the fathers of autonomous driving believes that for the time being, despite billions of dollars invested, manufacturers have shown extremely little progress.