Posts Tagged ‘autopilot’

Autopilot Tesla S Fatal Accident


Headlines are reading that speed was a factor in the recent fatal accident involving a Tesla S where the driver was using the autopilot feature. But let’s be honest with the facts. Data pulled from the vehicle shows that the Tesla was travelling at 74mph in a 65mph zone. Although that is still considered speeding, that’s a far cry to make headlines. So lets focus on other facts of the accident for a moment. The NTSB has not finalized a cause for the crash as of yet.

The NTSB report further confirms that the vehicle was in the Autopilot mode when the accident took place. With the feature enabled, the system will also activate traffic-aware cruise control and Autosteer lane keeping assist modes. The system also has an emergency front impact braking system in place. Currently, the NTSB has only released those details involving the accident. As the investigation continues, the NTSB will continue to learn more details surround the accident and potentially a cause. What we do know is that the Tesla with its Autopilot feature engaged failed to notice and avoid a white tractor trailer which cross perpendicular to the Tesla at an intersection resulting in the fatal accident.

Tesla Autopilot Blamed for Crash


So when a car with autopilot crashes, it is the car’s fault or the driver’s fault? An accident involving a Tesla Model S in California challenges just that question. The owner of the vehicle is blaming a faulty autopilot system in the Model S for not engaging the braking feature which resulted in the accident. Specifically, the auto braking function which should be engaged in the case of a front end collision did no work and the owner applied her brakes too late to avoid an accident.

According to Tesla spokesperson, “Autopilot is by far the most advanced such system on the road, but it does not turn a Tesla into an autonomous vehicle and does not allow the driver to abdicate responsibility. Since the release of Autopilot, we’ve continuously educated customers on the use of the feature, reminding them that they’re responsible for remaining alert and present when using Autopilot and must be prepared to take control at all times.”

Big Updates For 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class


I’ve been looking forward to this reveal for a while. Even though my car has only reached its second birthday, I have been wondering what Mercedes had in store for the next generation E-Class. The W213 is the next generation of Mercedes’s most profitable car.

For the 10th generation, Mercedes is coming out with a technological tour-de-force. Many new systems and features bring it up to date with the competition, most especially Tesla in the auto pilot department. Drive Pilot is the new system that I hope will address all the issues I had with Distrionic Plus when I did the comparison of the Model S and the E63. Autopilot showdown. I’m looking forward to my first test drive with the new E-Class this summer.

The new E-class has taken a page out of the 4-door coupe design book. If you have read any of my articles in the past, you will know how much of a fan I am of that. Well, I am not. It isn’t the new CLS, but head room feels a bit tighter in the back. I guess sedan styling is a little to old man for everyone? The car is a few inches longer, wider and they have lengthened the wheelbase. This makes rear legroom better and also leaves more room for the C-Class to breath (it got bigger with the W205 generation).

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Autopilot Showdown: Tesla P85D vs Mercedes E63S Wagon


Tesla’s Autopilot function dropped over the air last week to all who have a car built in October 2014 and later. Cars built September 2014 and earlier don’t seem to have all the equipment necessary for Autopilot to function. At least, that is what I am gathering from some quick research I did. Tesla isn’t a company that has my attention at the moment as I feel you are paying a premium for an unfinished car. Updates come out sporadically and they have been slow to bring their new products, like the Model X, to market. In my head, electric cars are for the future, when we humans have figured out how to get electricity into batteries faster, or when we have battery change stations, or have batteries that last longer. Tesla is building the infrastructure to compete with the fossil fuel burning internal combustion engines, but you still really can’t match the convenience of gas stations or the range (1000 km from a dirty VW diesel) of oil burning vehicles. But enough about how I feel about the Model S, this is about the new Autopilot update.

Over the last few months, we have heard more and more about the Autopilot capabilities that Tesla was to release. It really sounded a lot like what Mercedes has had on the E-class for a couple of years now in feature they call (Distronic Plus with Steer Assist). I ordered that option on my car after seeing reviews where the car basically drove itself. It uses short, medium, and long range radar as well as stereoscopic cameras (fancy way of saying 2 cameras) to keep you in your lane and keep you from hitting the car in front of you. Early reports made the Tesla system sound very similar. The difference being that Tesla uses a single camera, 12 ultrasonic sensors as well as the GPS to guide the car.

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