Tesla Picks an Awkward Time to Announce Updates to Its Autopilot System

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
tesla picks an awkward time to announce updates to its autopilot system

Less than a week after it was revealed that Tesla’s semi-autonomous driving mode played a role in a deadly May crash, the automaker is planning a host of changes to its Autopilot system.

The changes, billed as the 8.0 upgrade, include a feature that allows the vehicle to exit a highway and navigate an off-ramp while in Autopilot mode, according to Autoguide. The function will be activated by the vehicle’s turn signal.

Other changes to Autopilot include a more responsive Traffic-Aware cruise control system, a smoother Autosteer system, and a new interface that relays more information to the driver about the vehicle’s surroundings. An easier-to-use voice command system and upgraded navigation system (which allows drivers to select the best route for range and recharging options) is included in the software.

The 8.0 upgrade doesn’t have a release date, but is currently undergoing beta testing in a few vehicles.

Tesla’s method of finessing its Autopilot system through real-world consumer use preliminary investigation into 25,000 Model S vehicles equipped with Autopilot.

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  • Mcs Mcs on Jul 05, 2016

    My thinking is that the "blindness" from the conditions is detectable and the autopilot should have disengaged. If I was betting on the outcome of this, that's the way I'd go.

  • NeilM NeilM on Jul 06, 2016

    The real question is, why isn't anybody talking about the truck driver who illegally turned left in front of an oncoming car, thereby killing its driver?

    • See 11 previous
    • Vulpine Vulpine on Jul 06, 2016

      @Old Man Pants "Baressi said he saw it. In fact, he said he saw it approaching in the left lane but it veered into the right lane before impact." Kind of strange that he said he saw it, then later says he never saw it until after it passed under his trailer. However... Anyone happen to wonder how the car so-accurately positioned itself between the rear wheels of the tractor and the wheels of the trailer? Could that lane-change have been the autopilot aiming to find a safe passage because it knew it couldn't stop in time? If it assumed the side of the trailer was an overhead sign, then it may have 'thought' it was passing between two cars instead.

  • Inside Looking Out You should care. With GM will die America. All signs are there. How about the Arsenal of Democracy? Toyota?
  • DenverMike What else did anyone think, when GM was losing tens of billions a year, year after year?
  • Bill Wade GM says they're killing Android Auto and Apple Carplay. Any company that makes decisions like that is doomed to die.
  • Jeff S I don't believe gm will die but that it will continue to shrink in product and market share and it will probably be acquired by a foreign manufacturer. I doubt gm lacks funds as it did in 2008 and that they have more than enough cash at hand but gm will not expand as it did in the past and the emphasis is more on profitability and cutting costs to the bone. Making gm a more attractive takeover target and cut costs at the expense of more desirable and reliable products. At the time of Farago's article I was in favor of the Government bailout more to save jobs and suppliers but today I would not be in favor of the bailout. My opinions on gm have changed since 2008 and 2009 and now I really don't care if gm survives or not.
  • Kwik_Shift I was a GM fan boy until it ended in 2013 when I traded in my Avalanche to go over to Nissan.