The wait is finally over for Tesla owners who paid $10,000, or as of recently $15,000, for the controversial driver-assistance system, also known as “Full Self-Driving.”
Twitter, SpaceX, and Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted Thursday morning, “FSD Beta is now available to anyone in North America who requests it from the car screen, assuming you have bought this option.”
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!
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 24, 2022
FSD is Tesla’s upgraded “Autopilot” driver-assist feature that allows vehicles to navigate highways and city streets autonomously. Until now, some customers who paid the fee were blocked from using it “because they didn’t score high enough on metrics Tesla uses to set insurance rates,” explained Bloomberg.
Over the last six months, about 100,000 drivers were granted access to FSB Beta. Musk has promised a broader roll-out of FSD several times, though his timelines were off. In the latest 3Q22 earnings call, he indicated FSD would be available to all North American users who paid the fee:
“This quarter, we expect to go to a wide release of Full Self-Driving Beta in North America. So, anyone who has ordered Full Self-Driving will have access to the FSD Beta program this year, probably about a month from now. So – and then obviously, anyone who buys a car and purchases the Full Self-Driving option will immediately have to that available to them,” Musk said.
The world’s richest man first promised FSD in 2018. Only a small number of “expert and careful drivers” received FSD in July 2021. On the last FSD release, Tesla lowered the requirement for at least 100 Autopilot miles and an 80 safety score, and now anyone who wants it can click a few buttons, sign a waiver, and presto…
Just got FSD on a car with 54 score and less than 100 miles on autopilot ! 114 kms 🇨🇦 Wide release here we goo!! pic.twitter.com/57dtzJalQp
— 🤖FSD & Chill⚡️ (@MateenOmair) November 24, 2022
Just got #FSD Beta 10.69.3.1 here in Toronto. Took it out for a drive in North York and this is the most confident FSD drive I’ve ever had. Zero takeovers within the ~30min drive.The turns are confident and navigation around parked cars on the roads are human-like.🤯10/10! #Tesla pic.twitter.com/JZzpvFqGDm
— Ruiwen (@RuiwenHe) November 24, 2022
— Kevin Chunilal (@KevinChunilal) November 24, 2022
— Alicia Cryst (@alicia_cryst) November 24, 2022
However, over the years, we have not just pointed out delay after delay for FSD but also safety concerns around Autopilot.
In June, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration published the first report highlighting that Tesla vehicles running on Autopilot were involved in 273 reported crashes over the past year.
“These technologies hold great promise to improve safety, but we need to understand how these vehicles are performing in real-world situations,” NHTSA’s administrator, Steven Cliff, told reporters over the summer.
Perhaps Musk’s wide release of FSD should make every non-Telsa driver a little bit more cautious when they see a Model S, Model 3, Model X, and or Model Y coasting down the highway or city street while the driver is distracted playing video games on an iPad while the car drives itself.