(This post is part of a blog series. In case you haven’t read it, here’s the first post.)
We’re technophiles. Of course we said “yes” to the free trial of Autopilot. We figured we’d check it out, have a little fun playing with it, and then go back to driving for ourselves.
There’s a lot of misunderstanding about Autopilot. People misinterpret the name to mean “autonomous.” That’s definitely on Tesla’s agenda for the future, but as of 2017 we’re not there yet. Nikola’s hardware will never be capable of full autonomy (although the hardware on Teslas being made today will be, once the software has been fully developed).
Autopilot is best described as a suite of driver-assistance tools. The human driver is still, always, responsible for what the car is doing. Autopilot simply helps out with some of the easier driving tasks, which frees up the human driver for what s/he does best: watching the other drivers on the road.
We understood almost none of this when we accepted the free trial. Continue reading