The Tesla hype train
Eric Newcomer
14414

( IANATR) I am not a Tesla rep. Just in line for a car. Tesla has been quite upfront about the change in suppliers for autopilot and the resultant pros and cons. Any buyer gets all the hardware upgrades (which are substantial) and a base set of automatic accident avoidance safety functionality at no cost. A buyer next can choose to buy options for the temporarily lower functionality autopilot and future self driving at about a 20–25% discounted ‘at delivery’ price. Or the customer unlocks the features at no discount at a later time. From purchase the hardware runs in shadow mode recording real world road data, improving the narrow AI via neural net weighting, and comparing what safety results full functionality would bring. As the real world safety statistics of system and Tesla testing allow autopilot is improved with over the air updates. Finally with 14 months of data and testing in hand Tesla makes the case for self driving to regulators based on projected reduction in fatalities. It’s not simple to understand but clearly an engineer’s plan to change the rollout of self driving from ten years to two. Sort of the way Tesla way is pushing car makers from a fifty year green evolution which pleases big oil and entrenched interests to a 15 year electric revolution which may actually make a dent in climate change. 400,000 of us are in line. Hit pieces won’t sway us.

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