Tesla Motors plans on rolling out its latest software upgrade – version 7 – this Thursday. It will be available worldwide to Model S owners and includes autopilot features. Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced the release via tweet over the weekend.
Tesla slowly making headway
“Some exciting news this week: Tesla Version 7 software with Autopilot goes to wide release on Thursday!” Musk tweeted. Musk also answered questions from fans about the new software. With the update, the cars won’t turn into a completely driverless experience, but the update will come with features that help steer the car on the highway and help in parallel parking. The software update will offer several autopilot upgrades, but Musk did not share details.
For weeks, Tesla has made the new software available to a select group of Model S testers, and now it is expected to be widely available on the new Model X sport-utility vehicle. A few weeks back, the company begandelivery of Model X in very limited volumes.
Tesla demonstrated many autopilot features, but the upgrade won’t include all of those, said Musk. One feature that will not be available allowed the the car to completely park itself. Last year, when Tesla launched the Model S P85D, it showed off a combination of current and future autopilot features. The Tesla Model S P85D is a high-performance, dual-motor version of the Model S.
Sensors vital for autopilot
The Tesla Model X and Model S have 12 sensors at the bottom, a front-facing camera and a rear-view mirror and a radar system. The keys to the driverless experience are the sensors, helping the vehicle to scan speed limit signs, and notify the driver when the vehicle exceeds the speed limit. Sensors also have a vital role in the operation of the vehicle such as automatically following lane lines and taking turns without the driver controlling the wheel.
Tesla will likely debut features that are more self-driving than assisting some time in the future. ‘Valet park mode’ is one such feature that can summon the car to arrive without a driver. The autopilot features are available on all of Tesla cars, but to enable the features, customers are required to spend an additional $2,500.