Tesla’s self-driving car feature “Autopilot” has recently been in the spotlight – not because of how good it is, but mostly due to the dangers it could pose to its owners.
You may think that the autopilot features in Musk’s autonomous cars could actually let you sit back and relax as the car takes you where you want to go.
But no, it is just a semi-autonomous feature that can auto-accelerate, brake, steer and keep your vehicle in your lane – you still have to keep your hands on the wheel and your full attention on the road.
The good news is that Tesla is updating these features, and by August all the Tesla vehicles with autonomous functionality will be able to self-drive with your hands off the wheel.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted on Sunday confirming that version 9 of the autopilot software will be rolling out this August. In reply to another user, Musk confirmed that the current autopilot features focus entirely on the safety of the driver, and promised that the software update would add self-driving capabilities on the cars.
That issue is better in latest Autopilot software rolling out now & fully fixed in August update as part of our long-awaited Tesla Version 9. To date, Autopilot resources have rightly focused entirely on safety. With V9, we will begin to enable full self-driving features.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 10, 2018
We still do not have all the details on what precisely the company intends to change during the update, but we know that the update will fix the issue of two lanes merging during rush hour.
Being “full self-driving,” as Elon Musk calls it, doesn’t mean that the car will drive itself, though it could. But there still some limitations and rules and regulations on self-driving vehicles while on public roads.
According to a new section on the autopilot page on Tesla’s official website, the company notes there still will be limitations in the Autopilot feature.
It also highlights the capabilities of the new package, saying that “all you need to do is get into the car and tell it where to go.”
Tesla produces several warnings reminding the driver to keep their hands on the wheel at all times while Autopilot is engaged. If these warnings are ignored, the car could go to the extent of disabling the Autopilot feature, and even stopping the vehicle.
With the August update, we are hopeful and expectant of better self-driving experience.
The Autopilot software update will call for an extra $5,000 dollars to the car owners.