Autonomous driving is more difficult than expected

The Tesla boss announced several times that the company’s products could soon drive independently. Now he admits that he underestimated the task.

Elon Musk likes to fill his mouth. So he announced last summer, still In 2020 a driving system with level 5 would come on the market. He hardly sees any hurdles worth mentioning anymore. The public has been waiting for the corresponding version since 2018. Now Musk is rowing back: “I didn’t expect it to be so difficult, but in retrospect the difficulty is obvious.” Teslas „Autopilot“, which the manufacturer also calls “Full Self Driving” software (FSD), has so far not been able to meet the requirements anchored in the name. Officially, there is talk of “partially automated driving”, which corresponds to level 2. In ours Overview for autonomous driving you can see how big the difference to level 5 is.

Keen to experiment, but not fully autonomous

Observers state that Tesla is more willing than any other manufacturer to offer its customers beta versions of the Try driving assistants allow. The electric car pioneer collects a lot of data and corrects errors. In fact, there is a run on the so-called white list, on which the “test drivers” are recorded. This has led to Tesla being considered a pioneer when it comes to autonomous driving. The real classification of the self-driving capabilities of the system gets out of view. Tesla itself warns that the driver must keep an eye on the driving program at all times and that it constantly needs his inputs in order to function.

Different approaches, further development time needed

In contrast to other pioneers in autonomous driving, Tesla relies exclusively on it visual technology that a supercomputer uses is fed. The “learned” situations should then form the basis for the FSD system. Waymo, for example, which also lets several semi-autonomous cars turn around in the USA, also uses lidar sensors. The company has been talking about the immense challenges of autonomous driving. Meanwhile, observers are not bothered by the repeatedly postponed introduction of the next beta version of Tesla’s FSD software, but the full-bodied promises. The company has also been selling the “full self-driving version” for years at a steep surcharge. Slowly buyers were demanding results.

Others say Tesla should take its time, but stop making promises that are then not kept. Most recently, videos appeared that showed a Failure of the “autopilot” on sharp turns demonstrate. The car ends up in the ditch. In other cases the car got into the opposite lane at increased speed. Also the state US traffic watch NHTS is investigating a number of accidentswhere the FSD system is said to have been involved.

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