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Published: Mon, October 24, 2016
Tech | By Dwayne Harmon

Tesla equipping cars to drive completely on their own


DETROIT/SAN FRANCISCO Tesla Motors Inc's (TSLA.O) decision to equip all of its vehicles with self-driving hardware has intensified competition among rival camps of technology and auto companies over what equipment will be on board cars of the future.

However, Tesla has begun equipping all its new vehicles as standard with the hardware, which includes a substantially increased and improved number of radars, sensors, and chips to make use of the massive amounts of data they will provide about the driving conditions and environment.

The brains behind Hardware 2 is a new onboard computer with more than 40 times the computing power of the unit found in the current Autopilot system. NVDA retailed the Titan GPU at ~$1200, but adding 2-4 GPUs per Tesla from a Model 3 ($35K MSRP) could be price exorbitant versus the more affordable Drive PX/PX2.

Musk's own calculations of Musk's own product are the kind of objective data that journalists prefer to sue without any comparison or contextual framing, but is there maybe an epic stunt he could pull off to show us beyond a shadow of a doubt how safe self-driving cars really are? The talk is bold but experts say it's premature until self-driving cars prove they're better drivers than humans under any circumstances. In fact, NVIDIA has been building up a leadership position in the sector of embedded high-performance components for autonomous self-driving cars for quite some time.

Or, as Jessica Caldwell, an analyst for Edmunds.com, told the Detroit News, "The question now is how and when will this technology be implemented in the real world". The new Tesla vehicle will also have a state-of-the-art computer that runs the "neural net for vision, sonar and radar processing software".

From here on out, all Tesla models will have the hardware they need for full autonomy.

Tesla motors announced that all of their vehicles, including the Model 3, would have the safety features needed to be road-worthy, and to achieve driving capabilities that could be greater than that of a human driver. They insist that customers who purchase some of their most expensive cars - like Enzo or LaFerrari - are forbidden to resell them before a certain period of time.

While this is occurring, Teslas with new hardware will temporarily lack certain features now available on Teslas with first-generation Autopilot hardware, including some standard safety features such as automatic emergency braking, collision warning, lane holding and active cruise control. These features are still being robustly validated and Tesla said it will "enable them over the air, together with a rapidly expanding set of entirely new features". Activating the self-driving option will cost drivers $8,000.

For more on Tesla, watch our video. "He noted that a negative story dissuading people from using autonomous vehicles was effectively 'killing people" since the technology made driving safer.

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