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Posts Tagged ‘tesla autonomous’

Tesla Cars Will Add Auto-Park Feature, Musk Tweets

Vehicles will be able to go hunting for a spot without a driver.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Nov.01, 2018

All Tesla Model 3 sedans and newer Models S and X will be able to download the software.

Tired of circling around a parking lot looking for an open spot, perhaps missing a meeting while you wait? Or perhaps you want to don’t want to have to traipse back in snow or rain?

Tesla plans to solve those problems with a series of update that CEO Elon Musk said will start rolling out within six weeks for owners of recently built versions of its products. Upgrading the existing version of Tesla’s “Summon” auto-park feature, it will let a driver get out of their vehicle and then send it off to find a valid parking spot all on its own.

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Noting it will simply require an over-the-air software upgrade,” Musk tweeted on Halloween eve that the new feature “will work on all cars made in past 2 years.”


Faraday Future Set to Reveal First Car at CES

LeEco’s autonomous debut short-circuited when its car wouldn’t run.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Oct.20, 2016

The LeEco LeSee concept.

Tesla Motors isn’t the only automotive upstart attempting to make news about electric and autonomous vehicles. Several potential competitors have their own, futuristic models to reveal – though, as Chinese-owned LeEco demonstrated Wednesday, there are plenty of pitfalls along the path.

With billionaire investor Jia Yueting on hand for a public unveiling in San Francisco, LeEco’s event went off the rails when the LeSee, its prototype autonomous electric vehicle, couldn’t drive down the runway, forcing Jia to run down the ramp on his own.

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Jia, who made a fortune in the Chinese electronics industry, is clearly hoping to do better with a second automotive start-up he is funding, California-based Faraday Future. That company made its debut last January at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, and will be back at the 2017 CES in less than three months to unveil its first production model.


Delphi Launching Autonomous Fleet Test in Singapore

Project will supplement nation-state’s transit system.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Aug.01, 2016

The first of the Delphi autonomous prototypes will be a modified Audi SQ5.

Automotive mega-supplier Delphi is partnering up with the nation-state of Singapore to launch an ambitious autonomous vehicle test program meant to supplement the existing mass transit system.

The goal of the on-demand system is to make six battery-electric, self-driving cars available for rides on demand along three fixed routes to ferry people between their homes, offices and conventional mass transit stations. Backup “safety drivers” will remain behind the wheel initially, but by 2019 Delphi hopes to eliminate drivers – as well as back-up vehicles controls.

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The project “allows us to demonstrate we have the complete ecosystem of knowledge and capability in the vehicle,” explained Glen DeVos, vice president of the service business unit at Delphi, the one-time General Motors partsmaking unit now based in the U.K.


Tesla Aims to Improve Autopilot

“Top Secret Master Plan” to be revealed late Monday.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Jul.18, 2016

Tesla uses a "sensor fuson" blend of cameras and radar for its Autopilot system.

Tesla plans to update the Autopilot semi-autonomous driving system that has been linked to one fatal crash and possibly two other accidents, said the automaker’s CEO Elon Musk.

The South African-born entrepreneur also responded to concerns raised by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration which has launched an investigation into the crashes. NHTSA has also faulted Tesla for a non-disclosure agreement owners are required to sign, warning that it could hinder reporting of problems with Tesla vehicles.

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“There is no car company in the world that cares more about safety than Tesla and our track record reflects that,” the carmaker said in a blog post on its website.


CEO Musk: Tesla Won’t Disable Autopilot Feature

NTSB latest to launch investigation after three crashes.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Jul.13, 2016

Tesla CEO Musk won't pull the plug on Autopilot and, if anything, insists it will enhance safety.

Despite growing concerns about the safety of its Autopilot technology, Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk is making it clear he has no intention of disabling the semi-autonomous driving system. If anything, the South African-born entrepreneur argues that Autopilot will save lives in the long-run.

Not everyone is quite so confident, at least not in its current beta mode.  The battery-carmaker itself has confirmed the technology played at least some role in a fatal crash on May 9, and two Tesla owners have since blamed Autopilot for crashes that have occurred this month.

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration launched a preliminary investigation following the Florida accident that killed former Navy SEAL Joshua Brown. The National Transportation Safety Board is now conducting its own investigation. Separately, the Securities and Exchange Commission is looking at Tesla’s decision not to publicly reveal the fatal crash for eight weeks – until after the maker’s latest, $2 billion stock offering.


Second Crash May Be Linked to Tesla Autopilot

Tesla CEO Musk under fire for slow response to 1st crash.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Jul.06, 2016

Tesla's Autopilot uses a blend of cameras, radar and ultrasonic sensors to control the vehicle.

The crash of a second Tesla vehicle reportedly operating in Autopilot mode is raising new concerns about not only the maker’s semi-autonomous technology but how the battery-carmaker is handling a potential problem that has already touched off a federal safety probe.

Albert Scaglione, an art gallery owner from Southfield, Michigan, was behind the wheel of a 2016 Tesla Model X when it crashed and rolled over on the Pennsylvania Turnpike last week. According to the police officer who responded to the crash, Scaglione said he had just activated the Autopilot system, which is designed to permit partial hands-free driving on limited-access highways.

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The crash occurred a day after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced it would investigate a fatal wreck in Florida that occurred on May 9th. Driver Joshua Brown, 40, was killed when neither he nor the Autopilot system in his Tesla Model S responded by braking when a semi-truck turned in front of the vehicle.


Tesla Driver Dies While Car Operating on AutoPilot

Crash raises new questions about capabilities of autonomous vehicles.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Jul.01, 2016

Joshua Brown, 40, said his Tesla Autopilot system had prevented an earlier crash before his death in a Florida collision on May 7.

(This story has been updated with additional comments by Tesla to a query by

Federal safety regulators are investigating the death of a 40-year-old man killed in the crash of his Tesla Model S while the battery-electric vehicle was operating in semi-autonomous Autopilot mode.

Word of the May 7 crash in Williston, Florida was just released as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Said it would begin a preliminary investigation into the crash, which occurred when the system failed to prevent a collision with a tractor-trailer that turned in front of the luxury car.

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Tesla issued a statement emphasizing that this was the first known fatal crash first involving the Autopilot system, which lets motorists operate hands-free on limited-access highways. There have been a number of more minor crashes involving other autonomous vehicle prototypes, including nearly 20 reported by Google, a leader in the field.


Automakers Struggle to Keep Hackers Out of Increasingly Automated Vehicles

Chrysler recall not likely to end the problem.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Jul.27, 2015

A Wired journalist winds up in a ditch after hackers took control of this 2014 Jeep Cherokee.

Sometime next month, if all goes well, California battery carmaker Tesla Motors plans to ask a select group of owners to begin testing its latest vehicle operating system. Dubbed version 7.0, it will include a beta version of Tesla’s new Pilot system which will offer the ability to drive on the highway hands-free.

As with previous updates for the Model S sedan, Tesla will upload the software wirelessly, rather than requiring owners to visit its showrooms. It’s an approach many other automakers are expected to adopt in the coming years. But it also raises some serious concerns among industry observers who question whether such an approach might make it easy for hackers to shift their focus from computers to cars.

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The risk was highlighted this past week when a pair of professional hackers gained access to a 2014 Jeep Cherokee driven by a reporter working for Wired magazine. They turned on the Jeep’s windshield wipers, shut the engine down while it was being driven down the highway, took control of the steering wheel and then disabled its brakes, sending it into a ditch.


Would You Buy an Apple Car?

Reports suggest tech giant working on its own autonomous vehicles.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Feb.16, 2015

It would be a big jump from making smartphones and smartwatches to a smart car for Apple.

Apple revolutionized the computer, the portable music player and the cellphone. Might it also be looking to change the way we drive? That’s the subject of intense speculation in recent days, several reports indicating the maker is looking to take on its high-tech rival Google – as well as traditional automakers like General Motors and Toyota – with its own autonomous vehicle.

The news is being taking seriously enough that investors have begun snapping up shares of several Chinese companies supposedly linked to the Apple project, including electric vehicle manufacturer BYD.

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Apple has already gotten a foot into the automotive world with its new CarPlay technology which helps sync the company’s iPhones to vehicle infotainment systems.

Supposedly known by the internal codename Titan, the new Apple project would go far beyond that. According to a report by the Wall Street Journal, several hundred employees are now at work on a battery-powered minivan.


Tesla Announces “Auto-Pilot,” AWD Updates for Model S

But news falls short of some expectations.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Oct.10, 2014

Tesla claims the high-performance AWD version of the Model S will deliver McLaren-like performance.

Tesla Motors is giving its Model S battery-electric vehicle a “D,” but some buyers – especially those in the Snowbelt – are likely to reward the company with an “A.” As for investors, well, that’s another matter.

The new Tesla Model S D edition will be the first to get all-wheel-drive, a must in many parts of the country, as competing luxury carmakers have discovered. Meanwhile, a high-performance version of the AWD Model S will now be capable of launching from 0 to 60 in barely 3 seconds, on a par with a $1 million McLaren supercar, Tesla CEO Elon Musk boasted during a preview in Hawthorne, California.

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Musk’s frequent tweets had been triggering a flurry of speculation about what Tesla might have in store. And, among other things, the start-up battery-carmaker also announced a new “auto-pilot” system that will allow nearly hands-free driving on the highway. But the technology fell short of expectations that Tesla would reveal a fully autonomous version of the Model S – or of its next-generation Model III.