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Tesla has once again updated its Autopilot software, and it continues to impress. Now Tesla says they are working in ways for their cars to avoid potholes without any driver input.
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The latest update makes it possible for Tesla cars to drive fairly seamlessly on a variety of road conditions with very little input from the driver. Currently, Tesla’s autopilot can adjust the car's speed as deemed necessary for optimal safety and autonomous steering.
Avoiding potholes essential for safety
Drivers are required to stay in contact with the wheel and be fully attentive during driving. However, if you regularly drive in an area with lots of potholes, then Autopilot isn't much good to you. Avoiding potholes on roads is essential to save both your tires as well as avoid any instances that may cause an accident or loss of vehicle control.
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Earlier this month a happy Tesla user posted on Twitter that they were loving the latest software update but questioned the possibility of an anti-pothole addition Musk replied it was ‘definitely’ a good idea.
@[email protected] awesome job on AP.. Really love it. Have one feature request. Swerve the car where possible within a lane, to avoid small potholes to increase tire life .— Karthikeyan (@kkarthi002) April 7, 2019
Enhanced Summon lets you whistle your car from the garage
Tesla driver will be happy to hear the latest version of ‘Enhanced Summon’ is almost here too. U.S drivers will get the update this week. The latest feature will give Tesla drivers the cool ability to hail their car from a parked position in a car park and have it drive over to them.
Tesla Enhanced Summon coming out in US next week for anyone with Enhanced Autopilot or Full Self-Driving option— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 6, 2019
The feature doesn’t park the car autonomously yet, but it's pretty cool that you don't have to squeeze into the driver's seat then navigate out. Some Tesla owners got the update early while the majority will be able to summon their cars later this week.
Tesla drivers still need to be fully in control
There are still some pretty tight limitations on the feature like you need to be a certain distance from the car etc. and have it parked under particular conditions. It is critical to note, that despite the hype and language used, Tesla cars are not (yet) self-driving.
The electric car makers Autopilot feature can be described as a Level 2 system, a designation by the SEA that means partial automation. A level 2 vehicle can control Advanced Driver Assist Systems such as adaptive cruise (accelerating and deceleration along with the vehicle ahead) and lane steering in certain conditions. Drivers of level 2 cars are expected to maintain control at all times.
Tesla on the way to self-driving tech
All of these updates from Tesla show they are always moving forward towards their goal of a vision-based autonomous driving system. Avoiding potholes is a big test for such a system due to the wide range of variances in an obstacle like potholes.