Published on October 15th, 2018 | by Kyle Field0
Tesla Improves Visibility & Safety With Autopilot’s New Full 360 Degree View
October 15th, 2018 by Kyle Field
Version 9.0 of Tesla’s in-car software brought what was perhaps the largest goodie bag of new features to its vehicles that we have seen to date. Bundled into the update was a new feature that promised to give owners a “Full 360 degree view” of the car in the Autopilot display.
The new feature actively utilizes the side cameras in the car to provide a full representation of the cars around the Tesla in the autopilot display. To see what that looks like, take a look at the screenshot below. The autopilot display now includes vehicles that are to the sides and to the rear of the vehicle.
Tesla has also updated the vehicle identification icons, so it can show what type of objects are around the car. Tractor trailers now look like large trucks, the oversized soccer mom SUVs are equally as blocky on the display as they are in real life and even motorcycles are now showing up accurately on the display, which is reassuring. In the previous build, motorcycles were displayed like cars that glitched in and out of the screen, which did not inspire confidence, to say the least.
YouTuber daerik took to the highway in his Model S along with an army of cameras to give us an inside peek at how well the system performed compared to what was happening in the real world and from what we can see in the video, it does a pretty solid job. As I always tell my kids, just because cars appear on the screen (or not), that does not mean that the actual Autopilot system is not aware of them. Safety first, fun displays second 🙂
Full 360 Degree View also works to improve the safety of the car by adding active blind spot alerts. These alerts are most prominently on display when Autopilot is engaged and the driver asks the car to change lanes. In this case, the lane line turns red and the car refuses to move over into the blocked lane.
Daerik notes that this is one of the features that Tesla CEO Elon Musk promised to give drivers more control over, with the promise of a ‘Mad Max Mode’ that would drive more aggressively. Truth be told, the name of that feature alone might be holding up the official release as it seems like it would just beg for lawsuits. “Oh, you were in Mad Max Mode when you crashed? Shocker.”