Teslarati reported that an increasing number of Tesla owners who purchased the Full Self-Driving suite for their vehicles have reported receiving access to FSD Beta. This was despite some of the owners claiming that their cars have garnered less than 100 Autopilot miles and that their Safety Score was less than 80.
According to Teslarati, some Tesla owners remarked that even vehicles that are not used much, or cars that have a safety score below 80, have received FSD Beta 10.69.3.1. This included a driver who regularly drives his race-spec Model 3 Performance on the track, and whose safety score is at a modest 62. A number of Tesla owners who bought FSD several years ago also reported receiving the update recently.
The Verge reported. Tesla’s “Full Self-Driving” Beta, which as been gradually rolling out over the past couple of years, is now available to anyone who’s paid for the feature in North America, CEO Elon Musk has announced.
Elon Musk tweeted: “Tesla Full Self-Driving Beta is now available to anyone in North America who requests it from the car screen, assuming you have bought this option. Congrats to Tesla Autopilot/AI team on achieving a major milestone!”
According to The Verge, the rollout of the beta software kicked off in 2020 with a small number of customers and has since gradually expanded to be available to around 160,000 drivers as of October this year. Getting access to the beta has typically required that drivers hit a minimum safety threshold with Tesla’s built-in Safety Score feature as well as logging 100 miles using the company’s advanced driver-assist feature Autopilot.
The Verge also reported that Tesla’s driver-assist technology, not to mention the company’s marketing of it, are facing heavy scrutiny from regulators. The US’s National Highway Traffic Administration is investigating incidents of Tesla vehicles crashing into stationary emergency vehicles while using Autopilot.
CNBC previously reported that the Department of Justice has launched an undisclosed probe of Tesla last year following more than a dozen crashes, some of them fatal, involving Tesla’s driver assistance system Autopilot, which was activated during the accidents.
The Los Angeles Times previously reported that the California Department of Motor Vehicles has accused Tesla of false advertising in its promotion of the company’s Autopilot and Full Self-Driving technologies. The agency alleges the electric-car maker misled customers with advertising language on its website describing Autopilot and Full Self-Driving technologies as more capable than they actually are.
Engadget reported that Tesla first promised to launch full self-driving features in 2018, but they only finally appeared in July 2021 to a small number of “expert and careful drivers.” It was released more widely in the version 9.0 beta, but testers were limited to an early access program. On the last FSD release, Tesla dropped the requirement for at least 100 Autopilot miles and an 80 safety score, and now anyone who wants it can have it.
In my opinion, any company facing that many probes by governmental regulators should be extremely wary about what it chooses to do. It appears that Elon Musk is more interested in starting the beta test than he is concerned about consumer safety. That’s unfortunate, and could potentially result in legal problems.