One Tesla Model 3 from the selected few on the Autopilot FSD Beta program has achieved an impressive milestone. The car drove itself from the streets of San Francisco to Los Angeles without human intervention.
This is the longest recorded journey on Tesla FSD Beta since it was rolled out back in October to a very limited number of hand-picked Tesla drivers deemed safe and responsible.
According to Google Maps, the distance between both destinations is 382 miles (~615 km) that can be covered in about 5 hr 52 mins on a car. That’s a long long way and a hard test for the next-generation of Tesla Autopilot software.
In this journey, the Model 3 with FSD Beta went through both city streets and highways and with some difficult decisions to take, finally arrived at the destination un-intervened. However, the car had to take 2 Supercharging stops to complete the journey. These stops are Firebaugh and the Kettleman City, CA Supercharger stations.
Tesla (TSLA) retail investor, FUD buster, and Elon Musk’s friend Omar Qazi is the owner of this Tesla Model 3. The recording of this self-driving journey is played in fast forward timelapse with Elon Musk’s monologue playing in the background. This monologue is from last year’s Tesla Autonomy Day where Musk and his team showed Tesla’s progress in self-driving hardware and software development. The idea of putting Elon Musk’s talk in the background will not bore you watching the 15:21 min FSD Beta footage.
Omar also wrote about his experience cruising his Model 3 on Autopilot FSD on such a long journey in the description of his video as follows:
In a long-anticipated autonomy milestone, the latest build of Tesla’s Autopilot FSD Beta has driven from the streets of San Francisco all the way into Los Angeles with no human intervention. As far as we’re aware, this is the first known and recorded instance of Tesla’s Autopilot FSD beta driving from San Francisco all the way to Los Angeles without a single intervention.
The drive was not perfect, but it was such an impressive milestone that I had to share it anyway. Of course, the car did have to stop to charge. On this trip, the battery wasn’t fully charged, so the car had to make two stops: in Firebaugh and Kettleman City. Next time I will try to do it with just one charging stop so there’s even less human interaction. However, stopping twice over the journey is a more impressive demonstration of FSD’s ability to navigate rural areas, and is more realistic as to what a typical family’s journey would look like making this trip. It would also be great if someone with a 400 mile Model S could attempt to do an FSD drive between SF and LA with no charging stops.
After the car made it to Los Angeles, there was one tiny intervention where a giant piece of debris on the road popped up suddenly after a car moved out of the way. To be cautious I couldn’t wait to see if FSD would avoid it and had to make sure to move over myself. But besides that one second of grabbing the steering wheel, there were no interventions from start to destination. Next time, I expect I can record a run where there is truly no human involvement. I’m sure some people will say that means there was an intervention, but I will note that it occurred after the car crossed the border into Los Angeles so the achievement of zero interventions from San Francisco to LA still stands in my view. No matter how you look at it, this drive was an extremely impressive showing of FSD. I’ll just have to try it again soon for a truly perfect take.
Another imperfection was that crossing Market Street the car exhibited some strange behavior and changed into the adjacent lane. Normally most people would have disengaged at this point, but I watched closely and let it do its thing because it was doing so well that I thought there was a possibility of it making it to LA without intervention. I’m sure some people will criticize me for this and say I should have taken over, but I was watching very carefully and was ready to intervene if needed. The car was able to make it across the street without disengaging ultimately.
This is a milestone for long-distance autonomous travel using only cameras, and I expect to see many more like it. This is just the first of many such cross California and coast to coast drives without human intervention. Congratulations to the Tesla Autopilot / FSD team on this stunning accomplishment.Omar Kazi aka Tesla Truth
Just recently, a Tesla hacker has found out that the FSD software is slowly moving away from the programming logic created in C++ to Tesla Neural Net for taking decisions in traffic. This is a giant leap forward and the Tesla Full Self-Driving tests done this year will bring us far more satisfying results.