Tesla has announced that, from this point forward, all Tesla vehicles will be manufactured with the hardware required for fully autonomous driving.
Tesla released a statement on its website stating: “Self-driving vehicles will play a crucial role in improving transportation safety and accelerating the world’s transition to a sustainable future. Full autonomy will enable a Tesla to be substantially safer than a human driver, lower the financial cost of transportation for those who own a car and provide low-cost on-demand mobility for those who do not.”
The required hardware includes eight surround cameras with 360-degree visibility, 12 updated ultrasonic sensors, a forward-facing radar with enhanced processing, as well as the capabilities of seeing through heavy rain, fog, dust and even the car ahead.
A new onboard computer with more than 40 times the computing power of the previous generation is also included in the hardware update.
Together, this system is designed to provide a surrounding view that a driver alone cannot access.
Model S and Model X vehicles with the updated hardware are currently in production and presently available for purchase.
As for when these new features will be ready for consumers, Tesla says: “Before activating the features enabled by the new hardware, we will further calibrate the system using millions of miles of real-world driving to ensure significant improvements to safety and convenience. While this is occurring, Teslas with new hardware will temporarily lack certain features currently available on Teslas with first-generation Autopilot hardware, including some standard safety features such as automatic emergency braking, collision warning, lane holding and active cruise control. As these features are robustly validated we will enable them over the air, together with a rapidly expanding set of entirely new features. As always, our over-the-air software updates will keep customers at the forefront of technology and continue to make every Tesla, including those equipped with first-generation Autopilot and earlier cars, more capable over time.”