Tesla Fixes Full Self-Driving Beta Software Issue

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky

Following claims that Tesla’s “Full Self Driving” beta caused some vehicles to experience erroneous forward collision warnings and the automatic emergency braking system stopping cars for no discernable reason, the manufacturer has filed a probable fix with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

The recall encompasses 11,700 equipped with FSD beta software version 10.3 that was released on October 23rd. While Tesla says that the vast majority of the vehicles selected to test the new code were already fixed via over-the-air updates, 0.2 percent of the whole still had not been issued a fix as of October 29th. Affected cars include every Tesla model ever made, provided it’s from the 2017 model year or later.

The automaker has stated that the update introduced a software disconnect between two on-board chips related to its advanced driving suite and impacted several features and how a vehicle’s systems communicate with each other. Tesla claimed that the issue caused the chips to inconsistently detect certain objects, resulting in a scenario where a perceived emergency could force the car to apply the brakes in anticipation of a crash. However the company said it wasn’t aware of any crashes or injuries stemming from the problem.

From the NHTSA report:

On October 23, 2021, Tesla released firmware 2021.36.5.2 over-the-air (OTA), which introduced a software communication disconnect between the two onboard chips; specifically, when the vehicle is waking up from “Sentry Mode” or “Summon Standby Mode,” a mode where one of the chips is in a low-power ‘sleep’ state. This communication disconnect can result in the video neural networks that operate on that chip to run less consistently than expected. The inconsistency can produce negative object velocity detections when other vehicles are present, which in turn can lead to false FCW and AEB events.

Tesla has asserted that practically all of the impacted units have been fixed through subsequent wireless updates. But it’s still planning (and technically obligated) to notify owners of the recall, which commenced yesterday. Owners can also check the software tab of the Tesla or open the mobile app for relevant updates.

Don’t expect any apologies, however. Not even a full day after the FSD beta was launched, Elon Musk indicated that the reported glitches were par for the course when you’re publicly testing safety tech on your own customers.

“Seeing some issues with 10.3, so rolling back to 10.2 temporarily,” Musk tweeted on October 24th, “Please note, this is to be expected with beta software. It is impossible to test all hardware configs in all conditions with internal QA, hence public beta.”

[Image: Virrage Images/Shutterstock]

Matt Posky
Matt Posky

A staunch consumer advocate tracking industry trends and regulation. Before joining TTAC, Matt spent a decade working for marketing and research firms based in NYC. Clients included several of the world’s largest automakers, global tire brands, and aftermarket part suppliers. Dissatisfied with the corporate world and resentful of having to wear suits everyday, he pivoted to writing about cars. Since then, that man has become an ardent supporter of the right-to-repair movement, been interviewed on the auto industry by national radio broadcasts, driven more rental cars than anyone ever should, participated in amateur rallying events, and received the requisite minimum training as sanctioned by the SCCA. Handy with a wrench, Matt grew up surrounded by Detroit auto workers and managed to get a pizza delivery job before he was legally eligible. He later found himself driving box trucks through Manhattan, guaranteeing future sympathy for actual truckers. He continues to conduct research pertaining to the automotive sector as an independent contractor and has since moved back to his native Michigan, closer to where the cars are born. A contrarian, Matt claims to prefer understeer — stating that front and all-wheel drive vehicles cater best to his driving style.

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  • Dukeisduke Dukeisduke on Nov 03, 2021

    "Tesla Fixes Full Self-Driving Beta Software Issue" The jokes, they write themselves.

    • FreedMike FreedMike on Nov 03, 2021

      Yeah, maybe they fixed it the way I fixed that app on my phone that never worked right: DELETE.

  • Verbal Verbal on Nov 03, 2021

    Have they fixed the bug that causes Teslas to drive into the backs of stationary emergency vehicles?

  • Kwi65728132 I'll grant that it's nicely kept but I'm not a fan of the bangle butt designs, and I know better than to buy a used BMW while living anywhere in the world other than in the fatherland where these are as common as any Honda or Toyota is anywhere else.
  • ChristianWimmer When these came out I thought they were hideous: now they’ve grown on me. This one looks pretty nice. Well-maintained, low mileage and some good-looking wheels that aren’t super fancy but not cheap-looking or boring either, they are just right.
  • Aja8888 Someday in the far away future, all cars will look the same, people will be the same color, dogs will be all mixed beyond recognition, and governments will own everything. That car looks like my son's Hyundai Tucson without badges.
  • Tassos Of course, what the hell did you expect? A SERIOUS, BEAUTIFUL car you can ACTUALLY USE AS YOUR DAILY DRIVER???............. NOOOOO, THIS IS TIM WE ARE TALKING ABOUT. SO HE FINDS SOME OBSOLETE POS WHICH IS 22 years old, .............AND HE PURPOSELY MISSES THE BEAUTIFUL MODEL, THE Classical Beauty E39 that ended in 2003. ...........So he uses his column as a WASTEBASKET once again, to throw the first year of BMWs BANGLED 5 series (as in the INFAMOUS CHRIS BANGLE WHO SCREWED UP THE DESIGN ROYALLY). ................................................ As Dr. Evil, Fake Doctor Jill Biden would scream at the top of her voice, so her senile idiot husband could hear her, "Good Job, (Tim)! You answered all the questions and ticked all the boxes!" ..... KEEP UP THE S---Y work, Tim!
  • MaintenanceCosts This is a pretty appealing stealth commuter. It's been well kept, the differences from a 525i are subtle (and the first thing to go should be the 545i badge), and the cosmetic imperfections just make it more invisible. Just be prepared for the coming cooling system overhaul and other V8 BMW maintenance bills.
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