Tesla FSD makes a believer out of former UK PM Boris Johnson

Credit: Daily Mail | YouTube

Former United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson has called driverless cars “the future,” following a long test drive of Tesla’s Full Self-Driving (FSD) with his wife and child through the busy streets of Los Angeles, California.

In a column written for the Daily Mail on Friday, Johnson recounts his experience from the FSD test drive, saying it lasted over 45 minutes and included his family members and a Tesla employee. The outlet also shared the below clip of Johnson talking about the experience, in which Johnson saying that he “believes driverless cars are the future,” although he never before believed that this would have been possible.

Although the short clip doesn’t include much more than that, Johnson goes into depth in his column.

“I am sitting at the wheel, but not touching it, and though my feet are near the pedals, I am not using them – and, oh my word, the steering wheel is twiddling itself,” Johnson writes. “It’s eerie at first, like watching a ghost depress the keys of a piano. Now, it’s indicating, giving way, floating across the traffic with all the delicacy and tact of a living chauffeur. It’s so human, I gasp, so smooth.”

He also shares other details, including concerns about if things would go wrong, especially at some of the more complex intersections. He notes a five-way intersection in the middle of Beverly Hills, at which the car easily turned left, allowing him to relax.

During the entire drive, which apparently lasted at least 45 minutes, Johnson says there was only one “moment of mild confusion,” in which the vehicle didn’t understand a pedestrian trying to wave the car forward—though the Tesla worker noted that it would be able to recognize hand gestures soon.

“This car is incredible – but it’s the worst it’s ever going to be, and it’s getting exponentially better,” the employee said in response to the incident.

The news comes ahead of Tesla’s unveiling of a robotaxi platform in August, and as the company prepares to launch the software outside the U.S. for the first time. Late last month, Tesla received tentative approval for FSD in China, and it has also gained traction in other markets over the past few years.

“Everyone will be doing it: reading a book, playing cards, or just snoozing at the wheel of vehicles moving under their own volition: faster, more quietly, with less pollution – and more safely,” Johnson says of driverless vehicles.

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Tesla FSD makes a believer out of former UK PM Boris Johnson
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