The prospect of autonomous vehicles is coming closer to reality, and Tesla is at the forefront of the technology. One of the company’s vehicles has now driven itself from San Francisco to Los Angeles.
Tesla has already experienced huge success through its electric vehicles, and as a forerunner in the autonomous market, it could become an industry leader. The company is close to developing self-driving cars, but at the moment its vehicles still require the supervision of a driver.
Nonetheless, one Tesla Model 3 owner and YouTuber, Whole Mars Catalog, was keen to try out the beta release of the company’s self-driving software. The results are pretty impressive, but still suggest that there is work to be done before Tesla can provide a fully autonomous vehicle.
Check out the video of the self-driven journey below:
While there was little need for intervention in the duration of the trip between San Francisco and Los Angeles, although the driver did need to take over when there was debris on the road when they crossed into LA. Despite Whole Mars Catalog taking the reins briefly to be safe, they claimed that the video was the first recorded instance of Full Self-Driving completing this trip without input.
The achievement is undoubtedly significant for the future of autonomous vehicles, and this recording shows how confident Tesla drivers are in the technology. However, the fact that drivers have to keep their hands on the wheel at all times, despite the autonomous software, still shows that there is work to be done before the vehicles no longer need drivers.
The car struggled with lanes in San Francisco’s Market Street, and it is also worth noting that the weather conditions favoured the technology as it was a clear and warm day. It is unclear how the car would work in more dangerous and difficult to navigate terrain that has heavy rain or snow. On top of this, the fact that Whole Mars Catalog took control when encountering debris does suggest that there isn’t complete trust in the autonomous technology.
While there is still work to do, it seems that Tesla is drawing closer to delivering self-driving cars. With this in mind, many will be excited to see how the company tackles its issues in autonomy and creates a car that can get passengers to their destination with no intervention whatsoever.
After graduating from university, Dan went on to work with a variety of tech startups and media outlets. Through working with the likes of Game Rant, The Hook and What Culture, Dan pursued his interests in technology. The skills he picked up along the way are now being utilised with UNILAD.