Tesla’s Autopilot is supposed to deliver full self-driving, so why does it feel stuck in the past?
A year ago, Tesla CEO Elon Musk stunned the automotive world by announcing that henceforth, all of his company’s vehicles would be shipped with the hardware necessary for “full self-driving.” By 2019, Tesla drivers would be able to sleep in their cars, he suggested. Musk one-upped that a few months later, vowing to demonstrate a completely autonomous, cross-country trip in a Tesla by the end of 2017.
But since then, the company has fallen behind in updating its flagship semi-autonomous driving system, Autopilot, irking some among its legions of obsessed fans, and raising questions about Tesla’s ability to deliver on the promise of a fully self-driving car. In an August earnings call, Musk admitted the cross-country trip may be delayed. “It is certainly possible that I will have egg on my face on that front,” he said.