You may remember Carl Reese and Deena Mastracci, two members of the team who drove from Los Angeles to New York in a record 58 hours and 54 minutes in April. You may also have heard of Alex Roy, no stranger to records himself and someone who’s been very interested in autonomous driving lately. Those worlds just collided with a new coast-to-coast record using Tesla’s new Autopilot function.
The trio announced today they made the 2,995-mile journey in 57 hours, 48 minutes after departing from Redondo Beach, California on Sunday, Oct. 18 at 9:15 p.m. PST and arriving at Red Ball Garage in New York today at 10:03 a.m. EST.
It’s not quite as insane as Roy’s old (and super illegal) run in a BMW M5 that happened in 31 hours and 4 minutes, but they still busted Reese and Mastracci’s old record by nearly an hour—and they did it with the Tesla driving itself at least part of the way.
Theirs is the first transcontinental attempt in a Tesla Model S P85D using Autopilot, which came out just last week. In a news release, Reese said he’s been plotting this run for nearly a year now, as they wanted to be the first to do it.
It’s not immediately clear how much autonomous driving the Tesla itself did, but expect a dispatch from Roy soon on how exactly this went down—I spoke to him a little while ago, and he’s catching up on some much-needed sleep. Meanwhile, their GPS data and other evidence has been sent to the TransContinental Drivers Association for verification.
Well done, team. Well done.
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