The interior of a Tesla Model S is shown in Autopilot mode in San Francisco, California, US, April 7, 2016.
Alexandria Sage | Reuters
Tesla offered a way for customers to subscribe to its premium driver assistance package for $199 per month, instead of paying $10,000 in advance.
Marketed as full self-driving capability (or FSD), the driver assistance system doesn’t make Tesla’s electric vehicles safe for use without an attentive driver behind the wheel.
A qualified owner shared a notice it received from Tesla with CNBC on Friday, saying:
“Full self-driving capability is now available as a monthly subscription. For $199 (excluding taxes) to experience features such as autopilot, auto lane change, auto park, summon and navigate traffic lights and stop sign control Upgrade your Model Y. The features currently enabled require active driver supervision and do not make the vehicle autonomous.”
While this person’s Tesla Model Y had all the components needed to start an FSD subscription, other owners lamented that they would have to pay $1,500 to upgrade their Tesla’s computer to the Hardware 3, or HW3 version , the company had showcased for the first time at its Autonomy Day event. To subscribe in April 2019.
Customers who previously purchased Tesla’s Enhanced Autopilot package, which it is no longer selling, can subscribe to FSD for a reduced price of $99 per month, but may require an HW3 upgrade.
In a subscription agreement on Tesla’s website, Elon Musk’s electric vehicle maker warned that, among other things:
- FSD features are “subject to change, limited by region” and can only be used on Tesla vehicles that have new hardware and Autopilot technology installed.
- Drivers are responsible for toll, parking or other traffic violations that occur at Teslas that are operating with FSD facilities.
- Tesla can raise the price for a subscription at any time, but will give drivers one month’s advance notice before billing them at the new rate.
- Owners can cancel the FSD at any time, but if they do, the company will not prorate their monthly payment.
- Tesla may suspend or revoke a driver’s FSD subscription if they use technology “for anything unauthorized or inappropriate” or non-payment.
The all-new Tesla includes a standard set of driver assistance features called Autopilot. The Autopilot or standard features enable Tesla to “au tomatically steer, accelerate and brake within its lane,” according to Tesla’s website.
The premium FSD package enables more elaborate features like Smart Summon, which lets a driver call their Tesla to pick them up from a parking lot or from a long driveway using the Tesla Mobile app, like a remote control.
Tesla is also promising that a feature called “Autosteer on City Streets” is coming soon for drivers with FSD. But the company lags far behind its original and even revised goals of delivering sophisticated “robotaxis.”
Musk promised a hands-free, cross country Tesla driverless demo in 2017. His company has yet to fulfill that mission. In 2019, Musk predicted that Tesla would build autonomous robotaxis in 2020, and cars without steering wheels or pedals in 2021.
On the first quarter earnings call, Tesla CFO Zachary Kirkhorn said, “If you look at the size of our fleet and you look at the number of customers who haven’t bought FSD forward or leased and maybe experimenting with FSD.” want, it’s a great option for them.” He adds, “As our portfolio of subscription customers grows, it becomes a very strong business for us over time.”
To refine unfinished driver assistance features, Tesla is giving some owners early access to a beta version of FSD — effectively turning thousands of daily drivers into software testers on public roads in the US.
Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for more information, including whether FSD customers would be eligible to participate in the FSD beta program.
In recent months, as CNBC previously reported, Tesla has also been telling regulators at the California DMV and NHTSA that its FSD, and FSD beta technology is on par with “Level 2” systems — a professional association written by vehicle automation. Reference categories. Engineers, SAE International.
In accordance with SAE standards, last updated in May 2021, drivers of Level 2 vehicles are expected to “constantly monitor”, including steering, braking or accelerating “as necessary to maintain safety”. is. Level 2 vehicles have features such as automated lane centering that works in conjunction with adaptive cruise control. In contrast, a Level 4 vehicle may not require a steering wheel or pedals and can operate as a local, driverless taxi in limited conditions such as fair weather.