Tesla CEO Elon Musk said on Twitter earlier today that the company’s next software release of the Full Self-Driving Beta will be based on Tesla’s recent adoption of a “pure vision” approach. Musk also said that the new release would be available in two or three weeks after “one more production release of pure vision this week.”
Tesla’s Full Self-Driving program is one of the most intricate and robust in the autonomous driving sector. In years past, Tesla has utilized a series of cameras and radar sensors within its vehicles to help identify roadways and travel on them with limited driver interference. Teslas are not fully autonomous, but the cars have several driver assistance features and semi-autonomous drive settings, all prevalent and well-recommended by many owners who utilize them.
Recently, Tesla chose to ditch radar in favor of a camera-based approach. Musk has talked about this for several quarters, and Tesla finally adopted the vision-based approach on the Model 3 and Model Y just a few weeks ago.
Labeled “Tesla Vision,” the automaker believes that cameras are the surefire way to increase the accuracy of the FSD suite. While radar assisted Tesla in the “shortfalls of vision,” a camera-based approach is all that is needed, according to Musk.
During the Q1 2021 Earnings Call, Musk said:
“I think with the elimination of radar, we’re finally getting rid of one of the last crutches. Radar was really — it was making up for some of the shortfalls of vision, but this is not good. You actually just need vision to work.”
Now, Tesla plans to unveil one more production release of pure vision vehicles this week, and FSD Beta V.9 will be available “a week or two later.”
One more production release of pure vision this week, then FSD beta 9 a week or two later. V9.0 FSD is also pure vision. Foundational improvements are immense.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 6, 2021
Musk has said that V.9 is a week or two away from release in the past, so it’s tough to determine whether Tesla will actually be able to accomplish this. In the upcoming week, the automaker will certainly have its plate full. It is holding a dedicated delivery event at the Fremont Factory for the new Plaid Model S.
While the timeframe has been spoken about in the past by Musk and Tesla hasn’t been able to follow through, the company has always been extremely cautious regarding its FSD and Autopilot features. Musk cited previously that FSD wouldn’t be available in some countries for a while as varying road rules were a major concern. Cautious releases have left Tesla much safer, especially in a sector with so much criticism and skepticism.
Some owners have stated that their “Pure Vision” vehicles have performed better than radar-equipped vehicles in terms of FSD performance. If the improvements that Musk talks so highly of are released in the coming weeks, Tesla might be able to meet its goal of reaching Level 5 Autonomy by the end of the year.