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Straight Talk Between Tesla and CA DMV about FSD's Level 2

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Tesla FSD Beta continues to expand and popularity grows. Elon Musk announced that Tesla will add an FSD “Download Beta” Button. Today Musk explained, how it will work, but also we found some straight talk with Tesla with CA DMV about the real present capability of FSD.

Elon Musk recently wrote on Twitter that Tesla would be releasing a “Download Beta” button for FSD users. The button, which is part of the company’s efforts to expand the FSD Beta’s user base, is expected to be released with the Build 8.3 update. In a recent set of tweets, Musk shared some additional details about the upcoming FSD “Download Beta” button, as well as the feature’s estimated release date.

Musk’s update came as a response to Model 3 owner @WholeMarsBlog, who asked if the upcoming button would place Tesla owners in a queue for the FSD Beta.

Here is how that tweeting exchange went between the @WholeMarsBlog and the Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

“Elon, what does the download FSD button do? Does it put you in the queue to get FSD Beta, or download it immediately for anyone who has FSD and wants to try it?” asked @WholeMarsBlog. To this Elon Musk replied tweeting, “Assuming user approves warning & agrees to drive carefully, it will download latest QA-tested FSD “Beta” build as soon as car connects to WiFi.”

In a later tweet, the Tesla CEO added that the FSD Beta’s Build 8.3 should be done QA testing by the end of the following week, which should be around the same time the “Download Beta” button should show up in users’ vehicles. When asked if the FSD Beta will be expanded into Europe, Musk noted that Tesla would be asking regulators for a potential release in the region as well.

Regarding FSD, there is also a big confusion that was revealed yesterday. I want to present it to you and see what you guys think of it and where we go from here.

Yesterday the media started reporting that Tesla admits current ‘Full Self-Driving Beta’ will always be a Level 2 System. Emails to a Tesla regulatory counsel told the California DMV that it will remain a hands-on system.

Rob Stumpf explains in The Drive that the promises of hands-free driving and robotaxis have swirled in the dreams of drivers and investors ever since Tesla first teased the possibility of a consumer-grade autonomous vehicle. Despite this promise, Tesla has yet to release a fully autonomous car for the public to purchase. It does, however, still allow customers to buy the promise of the "Full Self-Driving" (FSD) set of features for their vehicles which currently fit the SAE definition of Level 2 partial autonomy.

"City Streets continues to firmly root the vehicle in SAE Level 2 capability and does not make it autonomous under the DMV’s definition," wrote Eric Williams, Tesla associate general counsel, in a statement attached to an email with the California DMV. "City Streets’ capabilities with respect to the object and event detection and response (OEDR) sub-task are limited, as there are circumstances and events to which the system is not capable of recognizing or responding."

“If nothing else, this further proves that the world of self-driving is built on a hill of confusing semantics. The definition of "partial-autonomy" seems to be "hands-off" driving to others, and such a small designation is enough to create serious risk—this type of marketing can be dangerous,” concludes Rob Stumph in his article published in The Drive.

Armen Hareyan is the founder and the Editor in Chief of Torque News. He founded TorqueNews.com in 2010, which since then has been publishing expert news and analysis about the automotive industry. He can be reached at Torque News Twitter, Facebok, Linkedin and Youtube.