There’s a lot of questions about Autopilot and how it pertains to your configuration. In this article we’re take a look at the differences.
The originally autopilot hardware suite consisted of 12 ultra-sonic sensors, 1 radar unit, and 1 forward facing camera. This is adequate to do most highway driving on it’s own but falls short of full autonomy.
If you do not order your car with Enhanced Autopilot, you will receive all the hardware necessary for it on your vehicle, but only Autopilot 1 capabilities. These will be activated along with the new hardware via a software update by Q1 2017.
The new hardware consists of 12 upgraded ultra-sonic sensors with twice the resolution as the original, 1 radar unit, and 8 cameras surrounding the vehicle. These senors will allow full autonomy when the regulations have been passed.
Price: $8,000 (if purchased before delivery)
Enhanced Autopilot vs. Fully Self Driving
Enhanced Autopilot is being billed as true on-ramp to off-ramp functionality. However it is still a drivers assistance system and the driver needs to be controlled at all times. This uses 4 of the available 8 cameras on the vehicle along with the other sensors.
Fully Self Driving allows fully automated urban driving. Eventually it will be able to drive the vehicle across the US without anyone in the car. To achieve this, the car must use all 8 cameras on the vehicle along with the other sensors.
Both of the above are not available today. Future software updates are necessary to unlock EAP functionality. The time frame on that is TBD but Tesla estimates full functionality by Q4 2017.
When ordering, it may not make sense to purchase FSD functionality before it’s made available as there are still significant regulatory issues that could arise. By activating later, the price goes up by $1,000 so the buyer will need to decide the best course of action.