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Tesla Shares a Video of FSD 12 Autonomsly Driving Around Austin, Texas

Last month Elon Musk shared a video of Tesla’s next-generation, end-to-end neural net FSD software driving smoothly in Silicon Valley. Today, Tesla shared the progress it has made by showing off FSD 12 effortlessly driving around Austin, Texas.


After successfully tackling the Model 3 and Model Y production ramps, currently, the highest priority task in all of Tesla has shifted to building the first self-driving software that is capable of fully autonomous function.

In order to achieve this lofty goal, Tesla engineers are working incredibly hard to release to customers the next version of FSD software which is expected to be the final, simple & elegant approach to level 5 autonomy.

This version, dubbed FSD v12 will be the first iteration of the FSD software to no longer be considered a “beta” software.

Musk hopes to release FSD v12 before the end of the year and be able to achieve level 5 full self-driving soon after. Although labeled version 12, FSD v12 is in reality a brand-new neural network architecture.

Related News: Tesla Introduces 2 New Model Y Variants in China, Suggests HW4 Imminent Launch

Unlike all previous iterations of FSD software, v12 relies solely on neural networks as opposed to manually written codes to make driving decisions.

This means no hard-coded explicit instructions are telling the vehicle to make driving decisions. For example, no code explicitly states what lane lines are what a traffic light is what to do on a green light, yellow or red light, or at a roundabout, and so on.

In the current iteration of FSD, FSD Beta V11, Tesla has 300,000 lines of code giving the vehicle explicit instructions on what to do across a myriad of driving circumstances.

On the other hand, in FSD v12, these instructions are replaced by a neural net that learned from massive amounts of video data and started to make sense of the world including lane lines and traffic lights on its own.

This is extremely impressive however, currently, this version of the software is not available to the wider public. Luckily for us though, last month, Musk live-streamed using his phone an FSD v12 drive in Palo Alto, California close to Tesla’s global engineering headquarters.

Although the live stream footage was grainy, we can see the smoothness and human-like characteristics of the new FSD software. Throughout the hour or so drive, Musk only needed to take over from the vehicle once.

During the live stream, Musk also gave us a lot of new insights into Tesla's work to solve level 5 autonomy. A lot of the things we learned were fascinating and included things such as the fact that Tesla is close to bringing online a new 10,000 Nvidia H100 GPU cluster to speed up neural net training.

We also learned that Tesla is already working on bringing FSD v12 to several regions and that the company already has FSD v12 testers on the ground in China, Japan, South Korea, and Europe.

This was well and good, however, Musk’s FSD v12 livestream was met with some skepticism from detractors who claimed the smooth operations of FSD v12 could only work in a small localized area in Palo Alto close to Tesla’s engineering headquarters.

Tesla’s FSD software, going back to the software’s initial release back in 2020, has worked better in Silicon Valley than it does in the rest of the US, which means the opinions of people who doubted FSD v12 capability outside Silicon Valley were not completely without merit.

However, today, Tesla has debunked those claims releasing an FSD v12 drive in Austin, Texas. In the X post accompanying the video Tesla wrote…

Tesla Full Self-Driving capability demo in Austin

FSD capability features use vision neural networks to perceive & understand the world, just like humans do.

Via our unique fleet learning approach, we are able to collect anonymized data from our vehicles—meaning the neural nets have learned from a few orders of magnitude more driving scenarios than the average human driver (including unusual & weird ones!)”

During the duration of the video, we can see Tesla’s latest FSD software effortlessly tackle complex driving situations including traffic lights, unmarked roads, highway on ramps and off ramps, intersections, and so on.

This proves Elon Musk’s demo drive in Silicon Valley was not a one-off route trained specifically for the livestream but that Tesla’s FSD v12 is working on a generalized solution to autonomous driving across all regions.

Currently, Tesla is only a few months since embarking on this radical approach to solving level 5 self-driving which means there’s still a lot of work to be done and a lot of progress to be made in the future.

And we’ll be sure to keep you posted as Tesla works towards the first fully autonomous driving software. Until then, make sure to visit our site regularly for the latest updates.

So what do you think? Excited to see Tesla FSD v12 functioning smoothly outside Silicon Valley? Also, do you think Tesla will be able to reach level 5 autonomy before the end of this year? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

Image: Courtesy of Tesla, Inc.

For more information check out: A Release Candidate Tesla Cybertruck Gets Pulled Over by a Cop in California

Tinsae Aregay has been following Tesla and The evolution of the EV space on a daily basis for several years. He covers everything about Tesla from the cars to Elon Musk, the energy business, and autonomy. Follow Tinsae on Twitter at @TinsaeAregay for daily Tesla news.