Tesla says autopilot requires “constant monitoring”

For many, the technology in Tesla’s Autopilot driver assistance solution is a major step towards driverless vehicles, but the carmaker is reminding people that’s not the case.

Reuters reports that while the company is defending the safety benefits of its advanced driver assistance system Autopilot and its Full Self-Driving capability, it does say they require “constant monitoring and attention of the driver.”

The news agency says Democratic Senators Richard Blumenthal and Ed Markey wrote Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk last month raising what it says were “significant concerns” about the electric-car maker’s Autopilot and FSD systems which have prompted scrutiny from safety regulators.

In a previously unreported letter to the senators, Tesla’s senior director, public policy and business development Rohan Patel, said the features enhance the ability of its customers “to drive safer than the average driver in the U.S”, but that both systems “require the constant monitoring and attention of the driver.” Tesla vehicles are capable of performing “some but not all of the Dynamic Driving Tasks” that can be performed by human drivers, he added.

Reuters also notes that Tesla stresses this on its website, saying that Autopilot enables vehicles to steer, accelerate and brake automatically and “require active driver supervision and do not make the vehicle autonomous.”

(Picture – Tesla)


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