At its surreal Battery Day event in September, Tesla said it planned to release a private beta of its long-awaited Full Self-Driving (FSD) software in “a month or so.” Now we have an exact release date (via Roadshow). Responding to a tweet from CleanTechnica, CEO Elon Musk said the limited beta will start rolling out on Tuesday, October 20th. “This will, at first, be limited to a small number of people who are expert and careful drivers.” Musk didn’t elaborate on how the company will go about deciding who to invite to the beta.
Limited FSD beta releasing on Tuesday next week, as promised. This will, at first, be limited to a small number of people who are expert & careful drivers.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 12, 2020
Despite what the name might suggest, the Full Self-Driving update won’t make Tesla cars into autonomous vehicles. As with Autopilot, you’ll still need to keep your hands on the wheel when using the feature. What the software does, for those who paid extra to add it to their car, is grant access to features like Auto Lane Change and Autopark. In the latter case, Tesla’s Autopilot software can help you when you need to parallel or perpendicular park your car.
Tesla drivers have been waiting to get their hands on FSD for a while. At the company’s Battery Day event, Musk said Tesla had to complete a “fundamental rewrite” of its Autopilot software to make FSD a reality. “The sophistication of the neural net of the car and the overall logic of the car is improved dramatically," he said.