Tesla's "Full Self Driving" update was sent out to an unknown number of beta testers a few days ago, and videos showing the system's performance are being shared around the internet. One such clip, posted by YouTuber Brandon M, shows a Tesla Model 3 equipped with the tech doing some suburban driving in FSD mode. I've got to say, though, for a system that's being tested on public roads...it ain't great.
Through the course of the short video, the vehicle often seems confused, making several errors and nearly running into a parked car had the driver not intervened. The owner also mentions several other issues the Model 3 had in earlier outings, saying it did much better in this example than it had before. That's alarming considering just how confusing this car is at points while driving through suburbia.
To be clear, it's fully understood both by the Tesla's owner and The Drive that this is an early version of FSD. However, it's being tested in the real world by non-professional drivers. Even considering that this is a new technology and it hasn't ever been evaluated in these conditions, the car should be able to recognize a stop sign, which it fails to at the video's 5:40 mark, pulling a California roll.
In fact, in eight minutes of driving, the system had to be switched over to manual control several times. It also seemed to have trouble navigating unusual intersections, stopping at them when there was no oncoming traffic and no stop sign. For instance, the car stops unnecessarily and nearly runs straight off the road at four-way intersection at the 4:25 mark. It also drives very close to parked cars and sometimes sees them as obstructions, harshly applying the brakes.
One of the most worrying moments is when the car comes to a pause at an unfamiliar turn, and the driver had to take the wheel. Needless to say, this system doesn't seem ready to handle anything more than the highway—which it still has trouble with on occasion—and it's definitely not "Full Self Driving." If this system went unsupervised, it would likely cause an accident. NHTSA says it is carefully monitoring the situation as the technology moves forward, and we have contacted the administration for comment on this video.
Got a tip? Send us a note: [email protected]