Just last week Elon Musk tweeted that the Tesla software team is working very hard to deliver the next Autopilot update that enables the Tesla vehicles to automatically stope for Traffic Lights (red) and Stop signs on the side of the roads.
Today, Tesla has started rolling out the 2020.12.6 software update version that contains this feature in Beta, Tesla has also posted detailed release notes of this feature that (read below in text format).
The thing to remember is that this feature is part of the Full Self-Driving (FSD) package, the owners that did not purchase FSD yet will not have this part of the update available to them. Elon Musk has warned several times in the past that FSD will be worth more than what Tesla customers are paying for today, especially when the Robotaxi dream is realized in the future.
But let’s first see how the feature works as a Tesla owner has already recorded his Tesla Model 3 stopping for a Stop sign at an intersection, interestingly the car preemptively displays that it’s going to stop using the driving visualizations on the center touchscreen.
When I asked the owner of the Model 3 in above video, if he tested the car on a traffic light, he replied to my comment on his video:
Yes, it did…but didn’t take the video. It starts slowing down (as intended) irrespective of the light being red or green, I just pressed on the accelerator and it kept going. Next time around it was red so it stopped. I think once the software learns from the fleet, it might be ready in 6 months to start proceeding by itself… fun times.
DragTimes owner Brooks Weisblat also tested the 2020.12.6 firmware update that enables your Tesla vehicle (Model 3, Y, S, X with the FSD package) to drive autonomously on city streets for the first time (driver still needs to pay attention) — let’s watch what he found out in his test.
Third Row Tesla Podcast host Sofiaan Fraval also recorded a short video of this latest FSD feature and showed how the car reacted to the traffic lights.
Release Notes: Traffic Light and Stop Sign Control (Beta) — 2020.12.6
Traffic Light and Stop Sign Control is designed to recognize and respond to traffic lights and stop signs, slowing your car to a stop when using Traffic-Aware Cruise Control or Autosteer. This feature will slow the car for all detected traffic lights, including green, blinking yellow, and off lights. As your car approaches an intersection, your car will indicate the intention to slow down via a notification, slow down, and stop at the red line shown on the driving visualization. To continue through the stop line, push down the gear selector once or briefly press the accelerator pedal to confirm that it is safe to proceed. As with all Autopilot features, you must continue to pay attention and be ready to take immediate action, including braking because this feature may not stop for all traffic controls. This feature will be conservative, slowdown often at first, and will not attempt to turn through intersections. Over time, as we learn from the fleet, the feature will control more naturally.
To enable, shift your car into PARK and tap Controls > Autopilot > Traffic Light and Stop Sign Control (Beta).
Note: Before this feature can be enabled, camera calibration may be required, and the latest version of Navigation maps must be downloaded via Wi-Fi. Please refer to the Owner’s Manual for additional details about this feature.Courtesy: TeslaScope.com
Tesla’s Gigafactories in the United States are closed for production due to the COVID-19 situation, but the automaker’s software development team can work while being remote from each other and Tesla owners are reaping the benefits.