Tesla expands its Autopilot feature following recent software update

Article by Christian A., on June 20, 2017

Tesla has been rolling out significant improvements to its 2nd generation Autopilot system since January. In connection to this, the EV company last week performed another major update in hopes to achieve fully autonomous driving by the end of the year.

Tesla’s Enhanced Autopilot 2.0 now consists of AutoSteer and Auto Lane Change, Forward + Side Collision Warning, Automatic Emergency Braking, Summon, Parallel + Perpendicular Autopark and Traffic Aware Cruise Control.

Knowing that fully autonomous driving is right around the corner, All Model S and Model X produced since October 2016 have been equipped with all the necessary hardware to self- drive completely. This includes 8 cameras with 360-degree visibility with 820 feet (250 meters) range as well as 1 radar sensor with enhanced processing feature to help see through dust, fog or heavy rain.

In addition, Tesla’s 12 ultrasonic sensors have been updated to enable the system detect objects at longer range. The Nvidia Drive PX2 or its new onboard computer system has 40x more computing power than the last time it was updated. In addition, the vehicle can maneuver itself better around objects than it was before using Tesla’s Summon feature.

In all, Tesla’s full Autopilot self-driving system will cost $8,000 when you buy a new car. The Enhanced Autopilot will let the vehicle control itself in different driving situations including self-parking. Similarly, its vehicles can change lanes automatically and merge on or off the traffic even without driver input.

Notably, Tesla began releasing new updates earlier this year starting with the inclusion of 45mph speed Autosteer function forward collision warning and active cruise control. The software update last January also came with an Easter Egg that lets the Model S P100D accelerate from zero to 60 miles per hour in 2.4 seconds when the vehicle is set in Ludicrous mode.

This was followed on by another update last March that increases the Autosteer speed cap to 55 miles per hour. With the latest update, Tesla's Autosteer function now offers “smooth as silk” control algorithm, including full speed AEB (Automatic Emergency Braking).

Tesla may be pushing for full autonomy between Los Angeles and New York by the end of 2017, but Tesla owners will not be able to take advantage of any of it unless the autonomous vehicle system gets approval from US regulators. So for the meantime, new owners can take advantage of Tesla’s strings of advanced autopilot features.

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