Friday, 17 August, 2018

New Tesla Software to Offer 'full' Autonomy, Musk Says

Rocket-powered Tesla Roadster may fly, Elon Musk says Musk tells fans 'full self driving' Teslas are near, as investigators dig into Autopilot accidents
Ginger Lawrence | 12 June, 2018, 08:31

Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the SpaceX upgrade package the company will offer for the new Roadster will include around 10 small rocket thrusters that will improve the vehicle's acceleration, maximum speed, braking, and handling.

Musk's promotion to his millions of followers - that the fantastic future of self-driving cars might only be a few months away - appeared to give the company a leg-up in the auto industry's most competitive technological race.

While the company has repeatedly pointed to human error in these cases, the "Autopilot" branding has left some drivers confused about the capabilities of the software, which is still now more of an "assist" feature than a a fully autonomous driver/navigator.

Musk tweeted early Sunday morning about Tesla Version 9.0 including major updates for Autopilot 2.0. "With V9, we will begin to enable full self-driving features".

Rocket-powered Tesla Roadster may fly, Elon Musk says
The Tesla Roadster's SpaceX package will replace the back seats with rockets (TSLA)

Federal safety investigators have been looking into a series of accidents, including at least two datal ones, involving self-driving cars.

Musk has complained about the focus on accidents, arguing that self-driving systems are likely to be far safer than human drivers.

"It's super messed up that a Tesla crash resulting in a broken ankle is front page news and the (approximately) 40,000 people who died in United States auto accidents alone in past year get nearly no coverage", Musk said last month.

A consumer advocacy group on Friday urged Tesla to fix what it termed as "flaws" in Autopilot after a preliminary government report said a Model X driver did not have his hands on the vehicle's steering wheel in the final six seconds before a fatal crash on March 23. The company said the base version of the vehicle will be able to accelerate from 0-60 mph in 1.9 seconds, reach a top speed of 250 mph, and drive 620 miles per charge. Tesla's stock price jumped Monday by more than 4.5 percent.

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