No sooner than last week, Tesla cars received an over-the-air update which gave them Autopilot capabilities. Not to be confused with a self-driving feature, the autopilot is an improved, high-end technology that embraces the cruise control function of former years and takes it to the next level. What it means is that the built-in car sensors are constantly analyzing data so that the car in cruising seamlessly on the road. With Autopilot on board, drivers get assisted driving, which is miles away from true autonomy. Tesla claims that the system was perfected for highway driving: for example, after you flick the turn signal, the car evaluates the safety of the maneuver and shifts into the next lane. The electric car manufacturer underlined that when the car exits the highway, drivers should be fully prepared to get back to the reins. After the North American release, Elon Musk announced that as soon as the regulatory approval is met, the technology will be available in Europe and Asia as well. On Friday, a Twitter statement from Tesla's CEO confirmed that Autopilot is good to go almost everywhere on Earth. It seems slightly ironic that the Japanese regulators are extra careful when it comes to automated vehicles, considering that the country has the largest concentration of advanced AI per capita. Musk added that the feature will get an update, Autopilot 1.01 that further refines its base function. He detailed the improvements and pointed out that controller smoothness, curve speed adaption, better lane holding on poor roads and improved fleet learning are important parts of the future update. Fleet learning is bound to improve some of the system issues, especially visible on roads with faded markers. "Soon" is the only vague indication of the expected time for the release. Another interesting addition to Tesla vehicles, the Autosteer feature, still needs further beta testing. The electric car manufacturer urged drivers to keep their hands on the steering wheel at all times, even if (especially when?) the car is in charge of navigation. Autopilot is purchasable with a one-time payment of $2,500, but Tesla S owners who bought a technology package get direct access to the features of the semi-autonomous system.
Tesla New Autopilot Feature!
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