Last week, we posted about self-driving cars, asking: Is “The Self-Driving Car: Coming Tomorrow Or in 2020+?”

Well, Tesla has certainly given its answer to that question. As reported by Aaron M. Kessler for the New York Times:

“The updated Tesla, an already high-tech electric car that starts at about $75,000, was equipped with what the company calls Autopilot — a semi-autonomous [self-driving] feature that allows hands-free, pedal-free driving on the highway under certain conditions. The car will even change lanes autonomously at the driver’s request (by hitting the turn signal) and uses sensors to scan the road in all directions and adjust the throttle, steering, and brakes. It is the first time that a production vehicle available to consumers will have such advanced self-driving capabilities.

“Autopilot is not free (the download costs $2,500), and it is not yet perfected (clear lane markings are needed, and bad weather can affect its abilities), but it works remarkably well under normal circumstances.”

Check out the NYT’s video below.



18 Replies to “Tesla’s New $2,500 Software Download for Self-Driving”

  1. I think this is a great invention. When Google was working on their Google car, which was totally operated by auto pilot, it was actually found that there were more reported accidents when someone was driving it, rather than when the car was driving itself. Although it’s a scary thought to let ourselves be transported completely by machine, I think it is a safer bet. Also, the price for this tesla auto-pilot feature seems reasonably priced as well. It was a very smart marketing strategy to make the auto pilot feature available as a download, rather than a car, so that people who have already spent $75k on a car only need to spend $2,500 more to get this feature. If you’re buying a tesla in general, I think the auto pilot feature will be easily attainable for you.

  2. No my opinion, this autopilot Tesla is offering is a novelty and not worth the extra $2500. The autopilot still requires the driver to be alert and engaged in operating the vehicle. If it allowed the driver to work on another task or not be engaged in operating the vehicle I think it would be worth the money. This autopilot could revolutionize the auto industry and help prevent drunk driving and texting while driving which are two very big issues.

  3. I honestly found this video truly so nerve-wracking to watch as I watched the driver take his hands on and off the wheel. Anyone can tell that the driver felt the same way as we’ve been conditioned to keep our hands on the wheels at all times. Although I can understand how reported accidents would decrease when in a self-driving car, I personally can still see how dangerous it might be if a person now uses their hands to text and takes their eyes off the road long enough to forget to maneuver their car in time to avoid an accident. For those who spend the $75,000 on this car, an additional $2,500 to get this feature seems reasonable as a marketing strategy as it doesn’t force consumers who solely want to buy this car to buy the feature unless they want it or force consumers to buy a car that is only self-driving.

  4. so that means if i want use this car with the new technology, then i will spend $77500, i don’t know how to describe this self-driving car, but i will never buy it. i have hands and i am not disabled, so why i need to buy it, i can drive by myself for saving so much money. i think that we may be like to try some new technologies, but most people just are willing to spend appropriate price to some more mature technologies. Asking customers to bear more risks is the worst idea.

  5. wowwww That is awesome, imagine you can drive your car with no hands and tell it to get you home while you take a nap. Sounds funny but the reality is that the future of technology is not that far. Tesla definitely have great people behind the company and it looks like they are making tremendous achievements with these cars. Tesla is super innovative thanks to his CEO Elon Musk, he is brilliant.

  6. I think Tesla’s semi-automated car sounds really cool, but I don’t think it should be available to the public until it is perfected. However, I think this idea of semi-autonomous is much safer than being totally operated by auto-pilot. Incase of any technological defects in the cars computer system, I think its much safer to also have the capability to control the car when needed.

  7. Personally I feel that the self-driving car is a great invention and that it could potentially lower the accident rate, but after watching that video, and seeing the driving remove their hands from the wheel, I was slightly unnerved. I find that the invention and progression of the software is amazing, but I am not so sure that I am ready for a machine to take over and take control of the road. The driver still has to be alert and pay attention to the road. They can not be texting and driving or have any other distractions, which is the same as if the driving was operating the car themselves.

  8. Although this innovation is not perfect, I still think it is a good function for a future car. I would definitely buy this Autopilot system if I have enough money. I really appreciate if the car can automatically change lanes because as a new driver, I feel so nervous when I have to change lanes. However, if this function had became prevalent, it might had cause some chaos. When people feel less nervous, they will not pay much attention when driving, the possibility of car accidents will increase. It is hard to balance the efforts and attentions when driving.

  9. I think the idea of the Autopilot is intelligent, but I definitely do not think that people should purchase this additional feature until it’s perfected, and can handle all weather conditions. Since the car costs a whopping $75,000, I don’t think the extra $2,500 is really going to make or break people purchasing it, but why purchase something you can’t trust? Personally, I think it’s extremely nerve-wracking and I would never be able to convince myself that this is okay, or let any marketing scheme convince me. What I find most interesting about this article is the amazing technology used and the innovation that has gone on over the years.

  10. I think Tesla is such a successful company. Tesla created many new things that are revolutionary and broaden my horizon. Many people blame cost of the car and the advanced system is not stable, but I think it should be doubted, because the new things are hard to be accepted, people are afraid to try new things especially self-driving system. the self-driving car is not perfect so far, but I think the way Tesla focus on is absolutely right.

  11. I only see cars can drive by themselves in spy movie. So I am so excited that self-driving cars are finally come to our life. But I doubted about the safety of self-driving car. Can it judge the situations appropriately on road? I noticed that in the customer experiment vedio, the customer don’t think self-driving is a good idea. So maybe this amazing technology need more time for people to accept. Besides, Tesla charge $2,500 for this self-driving system. It is not a cheap price. Thus, I think not much Tesla ‘s ownner will purchased this system. However, what Tesla do is awesome and self-driving will be a trend for automobile in the future.

  12. I believe this is a good move for Tesla. Besides the high-tech manufactured electric car, now Tesla is also the leading auto brand on auto-pilot software. This gives Apple Car a lot of pressure because apple is again one step late on the software. For Tesla owners, $2,500 software sounds reasonable but customer satisfaction after purchasing it may prove if the software worth it or not.

  13. I personally do not believe this is a good idea for a variety of reasons. First of all, it costs an extra $2,500, which to me is money being wasted, being that you still need to be alert for the autopilot to be working. Furthermore, I just don’t seem to grasp the idea for this to function well; I do not find the idea plausible and is not teaching the future generations useful tools for their adulthood, for example, the need to learn how to drive.

  14. I personally think that Tesla is completely changing the way we will see cars in the near future. The autopilot feature is a huge innovation for the car industry and is going to have a huge impact on everyone in the world. I was actually recently watching a video of a Tesla owner and his experience with the autopilot feature. Throughout the whole video, there were only a few cases where the car had difficultly when on autopilot. But, what was awesome was that the car signaled the driver in advance of an issues, and the driver said that the car automatically relayed the issues back to Tesla headquarters so that improvements could be made within the software. It’s very exciting to have cars that can communicate with each other and make the roads safer together.

  15. This is a great step in the right direction for auto pilot cars. Although i feel like this is a beta (demo), this is still something truly innovating. I do not disagree with the price because if you can remember when pc’s and cellphones first emerged into the technological world, then you would realize the price tag that came with the first models. Over time it will evolve and become even more innovating than it seems now.

  16. WOW! It is so cool! This is a great step for the auto-pilot system. Tesla will have another big advantage in the new energy cars market. As we all know, they have great skills in the battery to produce powerful batteries for the support of long distance driving for Electric Vehicles. With the self-driving system, I believe it will increase theirs sales revenues rapidly. Because their target market is the one who like new technologies. the autopilot is clear one of the coolest. Great job for Tesla!

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