Tesla Firmware 7.1 Will Park Car For You After You Get Out

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Originally published on EV Obsession.

A new software update for Tesla vehicles will reportedly be released in just a few days, on Thursday October 15th to be exact, according to CEO Elon Musk. The update will include an autopilot feature (for those with the hardware — autopilot sensors) that includes an autopilot parking function, amongst other things.

The rollout (which is a worldwide rollout, not just relating to the US) will occur over a 5-day timespan, though, so some owners may have to wait a bit. Presumably, everyone will have received an update by the middle of next week, though.

Autopilot, huh? This should be interesting — potentially a big milestone if the software performs to expectations. It should be noted, though, that fully automatic parking is not going to arrive until version 7.1 — which is apparently still in Beta testing. The parking function accompanying version 7.0 will simply involve allowing the autopilot function to do the job for you while you sit there and relax, going on what’s been publicly revealed so far. You’ll have to wait a little longer for your Model S or Model X to roll out of the garage and pick you up at the curb.

In addition to the autopilot functions, the user interface of version 7.0 has been completely revamped — with a change in the way current speed is displayed; a rearrangement of key information; and a new display element showing a number of speed limit warning, blind spot warning, collision warning, etc, indicators.

As far as dates go, Elon Musk does have a bit of a tendency to quote dates that don’t end up holding solid, so there’s still the possibility that Thursday won’t be the actual day that the update is released. He does seem to sound pretty sure in this case, though, and it’s just a few days away, so perhaps this is more of a solid statement than some in the past have been. I suppose that we’ll know soon enough.

Worth noting for some people as well, autopilot will be the same on the Model S and the Model X.

And Tesla cars without autopilot will still get a new user interface.

Got more autopilot news? Pass it along!

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James Ayre

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.

James Ayre has 4830 posts and counting. See all posts by James Ayre

35 thoughts on “Tesla Firmware 7.1 Will Park Car For You After You Get Out

  • So exciting. Blows my mind (and makes me feel old) that he’s announcing these major updates via Twitter of all places. Love this stuff…and wish I could afford a Tesla.

    • I know 😀 Love it, and always wonder what other CEOs think of this (who know about it) and when others might do so. I can’t think of another such CEO who does this.

  • Over the air updates – Soooo much easier than having every owner bring their car into a garage for a software update.

    • “Soooo much easier…” And sooo much less profitable for the dealerships doing the old style updates. Do you suppose that would affect their attitude?

      • As I see it, main dealerships have two main reasons for existing. The first is to sell new cars to customers, the second is to get those customers to come back to them so that they can sell them more cars.
        The way they get people to come back is by “locking in” those customers for warranty repairs/annual maintenance for the first few years.
        With ICE/PHEV cars, the cars are so complicated that no one who didn’t have the dealership’s specialised knowledge/tools could fix them. However, the maintenance of EVs is a lot less – most of the car is empty space in comparison to ICEs – so that area of work is going to drop by, say, 60%. If they also lose the software updates then that’s another 10% gone. That means that people will only bring the cars back to them 30% of the time and hence there will be a lot less opportunities for the dealerships to sell new cars – especially if car manufacturers are also allowed to sell cars online direct to customers.

        As I see it, one brand dealerships are going to shrink in number and you’ll probably see a rise in the “multi-dealership” in that they handle more than one brand.

        The maintenance of EVs will probably be well within the realm of the smaller workshops, so they’ll pick up more of the work further reducing the need for dealership maintenance.

        Not a good time ahead for dealerships.

  • If enough Teslas are sold this will happen eventually:

    When your car is self parking and someone crashes into it. That will be some real fun to play out for the insurance companies, Tesla and the courts.

    • Maybe once or twice. As long as the judge is smart enough to understand data. The Tesla should report its direction of movement and speed at the time of impact.

      I assume with collision avoidance operating the Tesla will have been fully stopped well before the collision.

      • Yeah probably just once or twice. It might be a real headache for those to though. haha. I guess current model S and X owners probably have lawyers so they’ll do just fine. Im sure the legal kinks will be worked out by the time there is an affordable self driving car.

        • O wonder how realistic it would be to have the car store the last x minutes of video right before a thumping is detected?

          There’s probably some low number of low resolution frames that would be adequate to demonstrate which car was moving and how fast at the time of impact.

          If drivers don’t have insurance then they’ve screwed themselves. With insurance it’s going to be two insurance company lawyers fighting it out in court.

      • You may find this interesting. There are many Google self driving car collisions. So far, I have found none attributable to the self driving feature. All Google self driving cars have drivers. The feature can be shut off.

        The most recent interesting collision is with a Tesla, which was not self driving..

        A couple of interesting items.

        ” a Berkeley study several years ago did find that the humans who drive luxury cars are four times more likely to cut off other vehicles at a busy four-way intersection, and three times more likely to cut off a pedestrian waiting to enter a crosswalk:”

        “The DMV late on Thursday began publishing on its website the reports on all collisions involving autonomous vehicles in the state since new road test rules took effect a year ago. There have been nine crashes — eight involving Google, which has far more vehicles on the road than any other company, and one with auto parts maker Delphi. All have been blamed on human drivers. All of Google’s fender-benders happened in its hometown of Mountain View, and Delphi’s happened just across the border in Palo Alto.”


        Another reference to self driving, the first Google self driving collision,


        A pdf describing all the self driving collisions Google had in May.

        Apparently, getting out of self driving mode is hazardous. (tongue in cheek partly)


        Another interesting thought. What would a self driving car do if confronted with aggressive pedestrians, drivers, and cyclists? If they knew it was programmed to stop, would they take advantage by seizing right of way and seriously impede the progress of such vehicles.

      • Wishful thinking. I sincerely HOPE this is the case, but after just having read the story of a Tesla rear ending a Google car, I’m not hatcheting my chickens before they count 😉

        • You have a link to a story from a reliable source about a Tesla being driven by the auto driving system hitting anything?

          Actually, I’ll save us all some time.

          “The human-driven Tesla was moving 10 miles per hour and had just crossed a lane when it rear-ended Google’s vehicle….”


          Please save your FUD for Fox News.

          • You have misinterpreted what I’m saying, which is… WHY did the Tesla rear end the google car ? I don’t care if it was in autonomous mode or human mode – either way, it should not have happened. BTW, I *LOVE* Tesla’s, don’t hate them, and I’m waiting for the Model 3 crossover.

          • Jack, when you drop ” after just having read the story of a Tesla rear ending a Google car” into a discussion about Tesla autopilot without pointing out that the autopilot was turned off and a human was driving is talking smack.

            That’s FUD, Bud.

          • I don’t know who Jack is, or why he is referenced ? (confused). My original question still stands… Irrespective if auto pilot is on or off, or a human is driving, why didn’t the Tesla’s Auto Emergency Braking stop the rear ender from happening? At such low speeds (5 / 10 mph) it should be a no brainer for the Tesla? Please offer a civilized (and informed) response instead of your FUD BS.

          • Jack….smack.



            How could the auto braking system stop the car if it was turned off?

          • And what idiot would (or could) turn off AEB ?
            It’s supposed to take over from morons who can’t look ahead to see what’s happening isn’t it ?

          • The kind of idiot whose job it is to take the test car out and drive it around with the auto system on part of the time but not all of the time.

            There have been multiple accidents caused by humans who were driving the cars with the systems off. Why were the systems off? Ask the person who set up the testing protocol.

          • OK, fair enough, I can understand that. I was under the impression that switching AutoPilot off would not disable AEB. Maybe this ‘tester’ has switched both off, & crossed his fingers he was not going to hit the Google car he was aiming at 😉

          • Because such systems are disabled at such low speeds so drivers can park, cross solid lines between parking spaces, etc. Had the Tesla been parking itself, it would have stopped before hitting anything.

        • The Tesla wasn’t on Autopilot and it could have been any car.

    • You wouldn’t be self parking on public property. So it is your teenager crashing into it. We know who will pay.

      About 80 people or so are killed each day in the U.S. by motor vehicles. Autonomous cars can do a fair amount of killing and maiming without raising insurance rates.

      • Oh I’m not worried about rates rising. It will with out a doubt plummet once self driving cars are here. Same with 30,000 deaths per year; it will plummet too.

        Im just interested in the first few crashes they are in. That will certainly make headlines in the news. Eventually regulations and laws and the whole system will catch up.

        The article didn’t make it clear that when 7.1 rolls out that it will be restricted to private property. I assumed that this is something that would be used in parking lots (which I guess is technically private property by its not your personal property) to come get you at the curb or something.

      • I’ll be surprised if autonomous cars cause any deaths outside of very weird situations. I can’t even think of an example.

        Autonomous driving is being rolled out one feature at a time. We’ve been using the first two for a long time – automatic transmissions and cruise control. Cars have been parallel parking themselves for a while

        Adaptive cruise control and collision avoidance are the next two that are likely to be in wide use.

        If collision avoidance proves itself out then the rest of the auto-features can roll out without danger. Worst case, the car can’t figure out a route forward without hitting something so it parks itself.

        Build in redundant monitoring systems that have the ability to override the main system, turn on the hazard lights and stop the car. Perhaps those system should be isolated from the rest of the car’s intelligence so that they can’t be hacked.

  • The old interface is not too bad (much better than the other car companies have come up with so far) so there is a risk this replacement will be worse, sure hope not.
    What I want is for the present 7 traffic aware cruise (time based) gaps to be changed so that 1 is simple non traffic aware cruise control and 2 to 7 are as 1 to 7 were but with 17% bigger steps to compensate for the lost step. That would require no hardware changes and make it much more usable for me.
    I’d also like the speed limit signs that are posted on the navigation map and appear briefly on the drivers display to stay on the drivers display (not disappear after a few seconds as they do now).
    I’m still trying to learn where the corners of the this car are, so my reverse parking is slow and laughable at the moment. If the car can do a better job, great.

  • Pretty awesome! Just fix the title please :-). Should be: “Tesla Firmware 7.1 Will Park Car For You After You Get Out”

    • Haha, thanks. “O can haz cheeseburger” grammar was indeed a typo. 😀

  • Why would I get out before I’m parked?

    • Same reason you get out of a taxi cab or a bus before it’s parked…why do you need to park it?

    • If you had a detached garage behind the house, for one reason.

      • Doesn’t everyone need their car to drive itself to the car elevator below their seaside vacation house?

        • I need the car to drive itself to a charging station, while I get in line to grab a burger!

          • I suspect we’ll get at least a version of that.

            You’ll drive to a Supercharger and if there is no bay open you’ll just park nearby. When a bay opens your car will drive into the open slot and the “snake” will plug you in.

            A few minutes (you set the time) before charging is finished you’ll get an alert on your phone. If you aren’t in fob range by the time charging is complete your car will drive itself to an open parking lot and show you where on your phone screen.

            That’s my current fantasy….

          • not bad for a fantasy, but I miss some nudity in there 😉

          • Well, I worked in the Tesla snake and plugging in (“heheheheheheh”).

Comments are closed.