Tesla has already removed radar capabilities from the latest versions of the Model 3 and Model Y vehicles in an attempt to progress toward using cameras for everything. The idea is called “Tesla Vision” and it is part of the company’s bet against radar. It is trying to prove that it can deliver a more complete full self-driving experience by combining cameras and AI together and calling it good.
Most know about Elon Musk’s brave statement where he claimed that anyone relying on lidar is doomed to fail. A statement that many other companies disagree with as they continue to push forward with the radar technology over cameras.
There is no telling who will or will not be right just yet as “tomorrow” could always yield a eureka moment that nobody saw coming. In the meantime, Tesla is continuing its push away from radar-reliance, which now includes all Tesla models.
With the latest software update (2022.24.6) that is rolling out to a vast number of users, the company is disabling radar within the Model S and X vehicles as well and replacing it with Tesla Vision (camera-driven). This is one of the biggest moves Tesla has made to transition users away from radar.
This has resulted in a lot of naysayers among customers that don’t agree with Tesla’s theory. Some still feel that radar can provide a more accurate feel of the road and others conditions surrounding the vehicles. Needless to say, they aren’t so happy about the upgrade. Especially, since it comes with a “temporary’ downgrade of a few small specs (max autopilot speed is dropped 5 MPH down to 85 MPH, and the minimum follow distance is now 2 instead of 1).
Meanwhile, there are many customers who are keeping their faith in the company that are willing to give it a chance. The minor speed limitation will likely be sorted out over time as the company keeps an eye on how things go in the near future. As for the minimum follow distance, most will likely appreciate the added safety (unless they live/drive in New York).
If you find yourself as someone looking to hold out on the transition, it may be smart to disable updates for now just to feel things out. Everything is still very much in beta, especially as the company makes this fresh transition (although it has been slowly happening for months now).
Hopefully, Tesla is able to prove itself correct so that customers aren’t losing access to their hardware for no good reason. If it all pans out, the naysayers will be comforted and the world may be one step closer to autonomous driving (given, there are still so many more steps that lie ahead).