Tesla has pushed its “Full Self-Driving Beta” to an investor who had a terrible “safety driving score” based on the automaker’s own scoring system.
It comes as Tesla says that it is only pushing the software to owners who scored 100 out of 100.
Tesla Full Self-Driving Beta
Tesla’s Full Self-Driving Beta (FSD) enables Tesla vehicles to virtually drive themselves both on highways and city streets by simply entering a location in the navigation system, but it is still considered a level 2 driver assist system since it requires driver supervision at all times. The driver remains responsible for the vehicle, and needs to keep their hands on the steering wheel, ready to take control.
It’s what Elon Musk has been referring to as “full self-driving feature complete” for the last few years.
Over the years, Tesla has been releasing some features like Autopilot for highway driving and Smart Summon for parking that are pieces of the autonomous driving solutions, but the FSD Beta ties them together into an end-to-end solution.
However, under its current form, the end-to-end solution is still not considered safe enough to be used without driver supervision, and therefore, it’s not truly self-driving.
Tesla hopes to improve it over time with software updates and eventually prove that it’s safe enough not to require driver attention.
Tesla has been testing the software through its early access program for the last 12 months.
The program consists of about 2,000 people – mostly employees and some owners chosen by Tesla.
Tesla FSD Beta wide release
Tesla is now moving to a “wider release” of its Full Self-Driving Beta, which is something that was delayed several times over the last six months, and it has also changed its form.
It went from a simple “download button” that would have allowed people who bought the Full Self-Driving package to download the latest software to a “request button” that starts a period of judging your driving based on some parameters and adds you to a queue to maybe get the new software.
This “safety score” to judge your driving has been active for the last two weeks, and on Monday, Tesla started to push the FSD Beta to those with the best score: 100 out of 100.
We previously noted that the safety score system has some issues where events, like false collision warning events, negatively affect your score.
Musk admitted that the system is “not perfect” and couldn’t even produce his own safety score when asked.
The CEO said that Tesla would release the Full Self-Driving Beta to owners who paid for the package and have a perfect score first then move to 99/100 with the next update and go down from there.
According to Musk, the goal is to get the update to the safest drivers first.
Tesla pushing FSD Beta to investor with 37/100 safety score
However, we learned today that Tesla doesn’t always stick to that system.
Ross Gerber, a wealth and investment manager who is also a Tesla investor vocal on Twitter, complained earlier this week about his Tesla driving safety score:
He confirmed to Electrek that his score was 37 out of 100.
Yet, the next day he posted that he was testing Tesla’s Full Self-Driving Beta in his own Model S:
As far as we know, this is the first time that someone outside of Tesla’s early access program and without a 100/100 driving safety score has received the FSD Beta update.
In a comment to Electrek, Gerber claimed that he is “one of the best drivers in the world” and therefore, the safety score is not representative of his driving.
He said that he believes Tesla sent him the update because “everyone in the media” follows him and he can spread information about the Full Self-Driving Beta update.
I don’t think it’s a problem that Tesla pushed the update to Gerber specifically with his poor safety score.
As we previously noted, there are problems with the system, and it doesn’t mean that he is a bad driver and shouldn’t get the update.
He could be a perfectly safe driver despite his score. However, I would note that the first thing he did after getting the update is drive and film with a handheld device while using FSD beta.
I am sure he was excited to try the software so it’s understandable, but it goes against Tesla’s recommended use of Autopilot and FSD features. It’s also a driving violation in California.
But regardless of his actual driving capabilities, it shows that the safety score system is not really about Tesla pushing the update to the safest drivers first.
Tesla has always chosen who gets FSD Beta, and it doesn’t have much to do with being a safe driver or not.
To be fair, the automaker said that it did remove some people from the early access program for being unsafe, but that’s after they were already in the program.
It looks like the system is about slowing down the release until the software can improve and be safer.
I am also fine with that, but I just wish Tesla was clear about it instead of telling us a story, especially when they make an exception for a Tesla investor who happens to be influential on social media.
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