The version 7.0 update of the Tesla Model S’s running software will use the car’s large suite of sensors to help it automatically steer, switch lanes, parallel park, and help keep you from crashing. The instrument cluster will be updated to include a real-time visualization of the road.
The autosteer function is still considered “Beta,” and for that reason will still require drivers to have hands on the wheel, but it theoretically will let the car follow lines on a highway. If you want to change lanes, you can just tap the turn signal and the car will move over when its sensors decide it’s safe to do so. The steering wheel moves on its own.
Another sensor-based software feature is an automatic emergency steering and side collision warning. This puts a “fluid-line” style proximity warning display around the car in the instrument cluster to let a driver know when solid objects are close.
Automatic parallel parking isn’t the most exciting news in automotive tech, we’ve been seeing this on nicer mass-production cars for years. But it’s a first for Tesla. At very low speed, a “P” icon will appear on the touchscreen next to the backup camera. Touch the letter and the Model S will maneuver itself into a space without any further driver input.
Elon Musk is in the middle of a full presentation right now, more details on the rest of Tesla’s 7.0 software and its future coming soon when he’s done talking.
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