by Fred Lambert
A judge has ordered Tesla to upgrade a customer’s self-driving computer for free so that they can subscribe to Tesla’s Full Self-Driving program without an additional cost.
It’s a victory for customers frustrated with Tesla selling a self-driving package to customers before the company has actually delivered a fully functioning feature.
Tesla has claimed that all its vehicles produced since 2016 have “all the needed hardware” to become self-driving with future software updates.
The automaker has yet to deliver on that promise, and the company actually had to upgrade the hardware in vehicles produced since 2016.
Most notably, Tesla had to upgrade the onboard computer on which it runs its self-driving software. The new computer is known as Hardware 3.0 or the FSD computer.
To make good on its 2016 promise that vehicles produced going forward would have “all the needed hardware” to become self-driving, Tesla offered a free computer retrofit to owners who ordered the Full Self-Driving package.
The fact that Tesla was doing the retrofit for free squashed people’s concerns about needing to update hardware to access self-driving.
However, things got more complicated last year when Tesla launched its Full Self-Driving subscription package for $199 per month. Instead of outright buying the Full Self-Driving package, which now costs $15,000, Tesla owners had the opportunity pay $199 a month to get the features available under the package.