Tesla Says All New Cars Now Have Full Self-Driving Tech
Despite the hurdles that Tesla has faced with its autonomous vehicle software, the company is aggressively moving toward cars that can be completely self-driving.
On Wednesday afternoon the company announced that all of the cars that it is now making have new hardware—like radar systems, cameras, and computers—that will enable them to entirely drive themselves.
The new cars, which include both current cars and the Model 3, will have eight cameras—three of which are forward-facing—that provide 360 degrees of coverage around the car. Older cars just have one camera.
The new cars will also have more computing power, and Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the computer power in the new cars increases by “a factor of 40.” The computer is “basically a super computer in a car.”
For more on the previous upgrade to Tesla’s Autopilot watch our video.
The new cars will also have the next generation of ultra sonic sonar, which will also scan 360 degrees around the car.
Currently, Tesla cars with autonomous software enabled can steer, change lanes, and park. But the cars can’t completely drive on their own. Regulations also currently don’t allow fully self-driving cars.
Musk said on a call that “it will take us some time in the future to achieve validation of the software and acquire regulatory approval, but the foundation is laid for the cars to be fully autonomous.”
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When cars can fully drive themselves without human drivers it’s called “level 5” of autonomy. Musk said that all cars that the company is now producing have level 5 capability.
Tesla is using its own software to processes the camera and radar signals to drive the cars. In recent months the company updated the latest Autopilot software to improve the processing of the radar signals.
Tesla expects that a car could drive from Los Angeles to New York on its own by the end of next year, said Musk.