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A CNN reporter tried Tesla’s Full Self-Driving in New York City. It kept trying to turn into oncoming traffic

"Asking 'full self-driving' to navigate Brooklyn felt like asking a student driver to take on a road test they weren't ready for," the reporter said. ...
The interior of a Tesla driving down the highway
  • CNN Reporter Matt McFarland tested out Tesla's Full Self-Driving software in Brooklyn.
  • He said in an article for CNN that the Model 3 turned into oncoming traffic multiple times.
  • "I suspect that article was written before the drive even took place," Tesla CEO Elon Musk said.

CNN reporter Matt McFarland tried out Tesla's Full Self-Driving software in New York City — the experience was less than pleasant.

"I'd watched the software nearly crash into a construction site, try to turn into a stopped truck and attempt to drive down the wrong side of the road," McFarland wrote. "Angry drivers blared their horns as the system hesitated, sometimes right in the middle of an intersection."

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has long claimed that the electric carmaker's autonomous driving software will soon become the industry standard. But, two years after its initial launch, the software still requires a licensed driver behind the wheel and is far from fully autonomous.

In his article, McFarland said the beta software, which operates as a $10,000 add-on or $199 monthly subscription, is more of a "party trick."

McFarland posted a video of the drive he took from the backseat of the car, while another driver sat in the front seat, ready to take full control when needed. The reporter decided to take the vehicle out for a spin on Brooklyn's Flatbush Avenue —  a congested urban road that can be challenging even for the most experienced drivers. 

The video showed snippets of the drive, focusing mostly on moments when the Model 3 hesitated or attempted to turn into traffic. The driver said that he had to take-over control from the autonomous software about every three blocks. Though, he noted he might have taken over control more than someone who was accustomed to the software.

McFarland said the vehicle often made jerky turns and braked or accelerated at unexpected points in the journey. Three things that can be risky in an urban setting, but issues that have been heavily reported by beta users on YouTube. 

"Getting honked at was common," McFarland said. "Asking 'full self-driving' to navigate Brooklyn felt like asking a student driver to take on a road test they weren't ready for yet," he added.

Tesla did not respond to a request for comment from Insider, but Musk commented on the article on Twitter.

"I suspect that article was written before the drive even took place," he said.

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While Tesla's FSD and Autopilot functions have come under fire over the past year. The functions have also been promoted for helping avoid collisions. In September, the Autopilot function potentially saved a drunk driver's life on a California freeway.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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