Tesla's 'Full Self-Driving' mode finally lands for regular owners in a watershed moment for autonomous cars
If you are one of the Tesla owners with a perfect safety score, you're in luck, as Tesla just unlocked wider access to its "Full Self-Driving (FSD) Beta" feature at long last. Previously restricted to the curated few, the FSD Beta update rollout marks a watershed moment for Tesla's autonomous e-mobility aspirations. It ties its disparate efforts like Autopilot for highway driving or the Smart Summon parking feature together in a true door-to-door software package.
Elon Musk has been talking about this "full self-driving feature complete" for a good while now, and today it is finally a reality. At least on the dashboards of those thousand or so owners whom Tesla now trusts enough to use as beta testers for its true end-to-end autonomous driving option. They must have driven more than 100 miles since September 25 and managed to get the 100 points safety score by keeping a distance and avoiding sharp cornering or sudden braking.
One of those perfect Tesla owners who got their FSD Beta update yesterday shared the notification email that the company sent to inform them of the FSD Beta availability:
We will be pushing FSD Beta Version 10.2 (2021.32.25) to your vehicle shortly!
Full Self-Driving is in limited early access Beta and must be used with additional caution. It may do the wrong thing at the worst time, so you must always keep your hands on the wheel and pay extra attention to the road. Do not become complacent. When Full Self-Driving Beta is enabled, your vehicle will make lane changes off highway, select forks to follow your navigation route, navigate around other vehicles and objects, and make left and right turns. Use Full Self-Driving Beta only if you will pay constant attention to the road, and be prepared to act immediately, especially around blind corners, crossing intersections, and in narrow driving situations. Every driver is responsible for remaining alert and active when using Autopilot and must be prepared to take action at any time.
As part of receiving FSD Beta, your vehicle has automatically opted into VIN associated telemetry sharing with Tesla, including Autopilot usage data, images and/or video...
Granted, this sounds like the same information Tesla sent to drivers in its early access program for the FSD feature but now we mere mortals get to see how it performs in real life with "regular" Tesla owners. Spoiler alert, it's mesmerizing, as you can see in the video below.
Tesla's FSD Beta still requires driver supervision at all times making it the so-called Level 2 vehicular assistance system with partial automation. Considering that Levels 4/5 are still a pipe dream and some analysts are of the opinion that full driving automation may never happen, Tesla's FSD mode is as good as it gets for the foreseeable future, at least when everyday driving is concerned.