Tesla introduced its Autopilot update (7.0) for the Model S in October, introducing the “Autosteer” and “Auto Lane change” features. However, the company had to roll back and disable those features in Hong Kong to comply with the formal request it received from regulators at the Transport Department. Now after five months, it appears the new features are making their way back into the country.
Tesla CEO’s involvement might have helped
Tesla Model S owners in Hong Kong are now reporting that they have received a new update that enables those features. This update follows approval by government regulators, notes a report from Electrek. Tesla CEO Elon Musk visited Hong Kong in January when he met with the Transport Department in an attempt to address their concerns.
Speaking at a Tesla owners’ event, Musk said to the crowd: “We’ll be meeting with the government tomorrow – hopefully. We are going to have some conversations and hopefully they will consider allowing us to release Autopilot in Hong Kong. I’m cautiously optimistic it’s going to be a good meeting tomorrow [Jan 26].”
Though it took over a month for Tesla executives to convince the government about the features’ safety, what’s comforting is that the government has finally given a green signal to them. Tesla delivered 2,221 Model S’s in Hong Kong last year, making it an important market for the company.
Hong Kong can now enjoy Autosteer, Auto Lane Change
The latest update allows Tesla owners in Hong Kong to use Autosteer, which automatically keeps the vehicle in the center of the lane on highways, and Auto Lane Change, which allows users to maneuver between lanes simply by activating the turn signal. Autopilot comprises of several features, but the bulk of it constitutes Autosteer and Auto Lane Change.
A new feature called Active Cruise Control was there as well, but it was already made available not only in Hong Kong but everywhere else as well. Earlier this year, Tesla unveiled the Summon feature, but it appears that that it will remain unavailable in the city. In January, the feature was launched in the U.S., and a few weeks ago, the EV firm started to roll out the feature in Canada and Europe as well.