tesla autopilot model 3

To see how much the Tesla Autopilot has improved, Chris from DirtyTesla tested the new update on his Model 3.

The latest Tesla Autopilot update 2020.12.1 brings with it various bug fixes, the ability to read map data and visualize road signs, even if they’re not there to make better driving decisions.

Chris tested the Tesla Autopilot off-road, which rarely has proper road signs, to put the system through its paces. Here’s what he discovered.

Tesla Autopilot Can Read Signs And Remember Them

The first thing to note is that the Tesla Autopilot can now change its driving habit according to the type of road ahead. If the system senses there’s an intersection ahead, then it will slowly bring the speed down.

Additionally, if there isn’t a stop sign at the above-mentioned intersection, then the Autopilot will simply display one. We know that Tesla Autopilot learns this way. The system might have seen a stop sign in this place before or it guessed that there would be a stop sign, considering it was an intersection.

Either way, I am sure, from next time, the Autopilot won’t display the stop sign at that intersection.

The visualization of Tesla Autopilot is now even better than before. It can sense turns, oncoming vehicles, signs, intersections, etc.

It can also detent unmarked sticks placed alongside the cones. In Chris’ Model 3, the Autopilot displayed them as traffic cones.

He also went by two other road signs that were not displayed on the map and as soon as he passed them, the Autopilot learned their location and started displaying them on screen.

In the coming months, a new Tesla Autopilot update will allow the system to drive through the intersection on its own.

Tesla Autopilot Real Driving Behavior

In Chris’ Model 3, the Tesla Autopilot is beginning to drive like a real human being. It is no longer simply identifying road signs, but changing its behavior accordingly.

I feel the Tesla Autopilot is also beginning to make use of common sense. If there is an intersection, then there would be a stop sign, the system knows the traffic laws — which is why it displayed a stop sign even when there was none.

The system is still far away from a real human driver. The issue of phantom braking still exists and we even saw it in the video. But the system is definitely improving to complement our driving instead of simply replacing it.

Yetnesh Dubey
Technology has a profound impact on our society. I cover news related to electric vehicles, environmental solutions, fake news, and video-games.