Tesla is set to update its fleet in August with some “full self-driving features,” according to the company’s CEO Elon Musk.
Musk teased the next update in a tweet on June 10th. The tweet explained that Tesla has been focusing on making Autopilot safer, but that the company is now ready to start rolling out some advanced self-driving features.
Tesla promised two years ago that its cars were going to be full self-driving by 2019. This update is the latest we’ve heard from the company on when it plans to actually provide full self-driving functionality to Tesla users.
Musk didn’t go on to specify if these new self-driving features will come to all of the company’s vehicles, or just those with Autopilot 2.0 and/or Enhanced Autopilot.
That issue is better in latest Autopilot software rolling out now & fully fixed in August update as part of our long-awaited Tesla Version 9. To date, Autopilot resources have rightly focused entirely on safety. With V9, we will begin to enable full self-driving features.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 10, 2018
Autopilot 2.0 was launched in 2016 and it was supposed to be Tesla’s Trojan Horse of sorts to sell the promise of fully self-driving cars. The system relies on visual cameras and some ultrasonic sensors, but not LIDAR like many other self-driving manufactures. The functionality has been built into every Tesla vehicle since 2016.
Enhanced Autopilot is an add-on that customers can buy to bring more semi-self-driving features to the car. It adds features like automatic lane changing, self-parking and four cameras instead of one. To add this to a car it costs $6,600 CAD when the user buys the vehicle, or it can be added on for $7,900 after the initial purchase.
The full self-driving capability option adds more cameras to the car, going from four to eight. This trim is in preparation for when the company gets approved to sell fully self-driving cars. If Autopilot 2.0 is Tesla’s Trojan Horse, then this option is Achilles inside of the horse. It currently doesn’t add much functionality to the car, but the August update seems poised to change that.
It makes sense that when Musk mentions full-self driving features he means the ‘full self-driving capability’ option that users have to pay extra for, but since it’s just a tweet it’s hard to tell.
Tesla vehicles currently run ‘V8’ of the company’s software. Tesla released the software back in 2016.