Watch Tesla’s Autopilot Appear to Avoid a Highway Collision
Tesla’s super-sensory autopilot system might be able to predict a collision and react faster than a human driver, a new dash-cam video suggests, using radar technology that allows it to see what we cannot.
The 40-second clip, first reported by tech site Electrek, shows a highway in the Netherlands stretching before a moving Tesla (TSLA). Eight seconds in, a rapid beeping sound is followed by a car rear-ending an SUV, which then flips over on impact.
As reported by CNBC, Tesla said in a September blog post that the vehicle’s Autopilot 8.0 software uses radar signals to “bounce” around objects, detecting not only what lies directly ahead but also other movements that a driver may be blind to.
“Taking this one step further, a Tesla will also be able to bounce the radar signal under a vehicle in front —using the radar pulse signature and photon time of flight to distinguish the signal — and still brake even when trailing a car that is opaque to both vision and radar,” CNBC quoted from Tesla’s post.
The car’s driver reportedly said the warning system, sensing that a car up ahead was stopping suddenly, activated its brakes before he could react, stopping well behind the other vehicles and avoiding collision, according to Electrek.
Despite what looked like a major crash—sending an SUV rolling over along the highway—the driver reportedly said that everyone involved “turned out to be OK.”
For more on Tesla’s autopilot development, watch Fortune’s video:
Tesla’s CEO, Elon Musk, has said he aims to test fully automated vehicles by the end of 2017, according to TechCrunch, a development the company believes will improve its safety capabilities.