Tesla Autopilot-01

Electric automaker, Tesla is in the midst of working on a host of mechanical upgrades to complement the upcoming Autopilot 2.0 update, which will include additional radars as well as a triple front-facing camera. The second version of Autopilot requires more than software updates, which brings about the introduction of the aforementioned radars and cameras, in order to pave the way towards fully autonomous Teslas.

Tesla introduced Autopilot in September 2014, which was made up of a front-facing camera, a front-facing radar and a 360-degree ultrasonic sensor for the vehicle’s awareness of its surroundings. Since then, the company has introduced over-the-air (software) updates to offer functions such as Autosteer and Autopark, which, as the names imply, aid the vehicle in manoeuvring to steer and park itself.

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The new suite of sensors and cameras will enable Level 3 autonomous driving, which allows the driver to turn their attention away from driving tasks within known, limited environments such as freeways, and will enable Level 4, fully autonomous driving in the not-too-distant future. Electrek reported that Tesla has started installing the new camera housing in the latest production units of the Model S, though there was no specific mention of the cameras themselves.

Sources tell Electrek that Tesla has already written the software for the triple camera setup, which comprises a main 50° field of view (FOV) camera for general inputs, a narrow camera with a 25° FOV for redundancy in object detection, lanes and traffic lights, and a fisheye 150° FOV wide camera for parallel lanes, lane cutting, cyclist and pedestrian detection. Even when hardware installation has commenced, the over-the-air adoption of the new software appear to be a few months away.