Many people nowadays take Elon Musk's future predictions of with some caution, given the fact that in recent years he announced things that later took way longer than expected to become a reality, and in other cases products (Cybertruck, Roadster, Semi...) that even today most people are actually still waiting for. One of these features is the FSD (Full Self Driving) in Tesla vehicles, something that was promised several years ago. Elon Musk took to social media once again in a new statement in which he predicts that said autonomy will be reached this very year, 2022.
At the beginning of the development of the famous FSD (Full Self-Driving) system, it was taken for granted that the hardware, in those vehicles that agreed to mount the FSD system, would be fully functional for years to come and that they would have to carry out periodic updates in order to reach the level of autonomy that the car would finally achieve. We have seen in recent months how the first generation of vehicles that installed the FSD hardware has become somewhat outdated, while Tesla itself recently proposed a renewal of this hardware feature.
After reading on social media the premise that “next year we will achieve full autonomous driving”, many followers are already a little bit wary about such statements. But Elon Musk went a step further and no longer said "next year" in order to promise the arrival of his technology, but rather stated that we would have it ready this year: 2022. This statement was made by the CEO himself during Q4 shareholders' call 2021; Musk's full statement was as follows: "I'd be surprised if we don't achieve safer-than-human fully autonomous driving this year. It would surprise me". He did not add any more details to his statement during the conference, but he said the same thing on his Twitter account, as he is used to doing occasionally.
The lack of details about this concise prediction caused many followers and specialists to ask for more details about it, to which Musk answered by going to his official Twitter account to reassure his full confidence in this technology and, later on, added that he plans to grant licenses for the use of FSD software to other automakers; by the way considering them about five years behind Tesla in autonomous technology development.
The possibility of Tesla starting to sell its own FSD software to those other manufacturers would be a remarkable milestone for the company, since it would not only strengthen its position in the market as a vehicle manufacturer, but – maybe more importantly - also as a high-tech company, something that Elon Musk has been emphasizing for several years now; in addition to the humanoid robot project - the Tesla Bot - presented last year during the celebration of the so-called 'AI Day'.
In any case, if the official deployment of fully autonomous driving (FSD) in Tesla vehicles is finally confirmed, it would be a heavy blow on the table as per the rest of the OEM brands in the automotive industry worldwide.
All images courtesy of Tesla Inc.
Nico Caballero is the VP of Finance of Cogency Power, specializing in solar energy. He also holds a Diploma in Electric Cars from Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands, and enjoys doing research about Tesla and EV batteries. He can be reached at @NicoTorqueNews on Twitter. Nico covers Tesla and electric vehicle latest happenings at Torque News.