Tesla’s Autopilot system is always being improved but it is far from perfect, as the video below shows. And the same, to some extent, could be said about its driver.
In recent months, we’ve seen a number of potential accidents being avoided by the car manufacturer’s advanced driving aid, but an unexpected change in the road threw off this Model S’ system.
As the electric sedan was cruising down a motorway in the United States, the lane it was traveling along briefly curved to the right as some construction was going on. Look closely at the lane and you’ll notice that the yellow lane marking to the left abruptly angles off to the right and a few dozen feet in front of it, there is a concrete median barrier.
However, the Autopilot system failed to notice that the lane marking had moved and appears to think that the edge of the road is still the lane marking. As a result, it slams into the median.
The car sustained a fairly hefty bump, damaging the paintwork and wrecking the passenger-side front wheel. Admittedly, if the driver was paying attention instead of relying solely on the semi-autonomous function, the collision could have been easily avoided.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen a Tesla careen into a concrete barrier on a motorway. A month ago, a video surfaced of a Model 3 doing to the same, but it remains to be seen if the Autopilot system of that car was engaged at the time of the accident.
In any case, despite its name, Autopilot is not a fully autonomous, Level 4-capable, system and needs a driver that pays attention to the road at all times and takes control when necessary. This is something that has been stressed many times, but somehow the message doesn’t seem to get through.