Elon Musk touts largely autonomous Tesla Model 2 platform EVs despite the FSD recall
Recently, Tesla changed the legalese in its Full Self-Driving Beta option terms to sound like it will remain a Level 2 autonomous driving system for the foreseeable future. This angered some owners who paid hefty sums for the service with the hope and promise that FSD may eventually become a truly independent of the driver system. For Tesla, however, the changes were necessary in order to address the recent federal recall that said FSD may run stop lights and break speed limits in certain scenarios.
Despite the apparent limitations of the FSD system, yesterday Elon Musk insisted before a Morgan Stanley investor crowd that the vehicles built on the next-gen Tesla platform for affordable EVs will be driving "almost entirely in autonomous mode." This could raise some eyebrows given that the cheaper US$25,000 Model 2 is expected some time before 2026 rolls out as it is slated to appear in Tesla's current 5-year planning period.
Needless to say, Musk could've meant the long-promised Robotaxi, but that is even further down the road, while from the wording it seemed that he addressed all vehicles that will eventually be built on Tesla's first mass market EV platform.
Still, he reiterated for the Morgan Stanley conference that the smaller and cheaper Teslas that the platform will bring to market will be made with 50% of the Model 3's production costs (currently about US$33,600), and that there is now a "clear path" for doing this. One of the reasons that Tesla's stock fell after Investor Day, however, was that Musk didn't give any details about the eventual Model 2 in terms of specs or release date.
Instead, the automaker seems to be focusing on the mass market EV platform as part of its overarching strategy for greener future and mass electrification. Some further Model 2 details could be revealed in three months when Tesla breaks ground on the Mexico Gigafactory that is expected to become one of the Model 2 assembly centers in the future.