With New Update, Tesla Autopilot Seems Vastly Improved On Curvy Roads


Tesla Model 3 Autopilot appears to fare remarkably well on this winding road.

*Disclaimer: Keep in mind that Autosteer is currently a beta product and is a “hands-on” system. We post these videos to give people an idea of changes that may occur due to over-the-air updates. It’s critical that you follow Tesla’s rules for Autopilot and Autosteer use, despite the fact that many of the drivers in the “testing” videos do not keep their hands on the wheel.

YouTuber i1Tesla uses the same curvy road to keep track of how much Tesla Autopilot has improved after each update. He explains that the road is not fast, but it’s winding, has blind curves, and it’s just not something that the technology excels at. However, as you can see from the video above, the Tesla Model 3 seems to have a solid handle on it with the latest Autopilot update.

It’s pointed out that during a previous Autopilot test on this road, he was only able to travel 21 to 22 MPH before the system wasn’t equipped to handle the situation. This time, he starts by setting the Model 3 at 25 MPH. The car performs well, stays inside the lines, takes the blind curves confidently, and doesn’t leave the road where it did prior to the latest update. It even successfully slows down where it needs to.

During a second test, at 30 MPH, the car goes over the line a touch initially upon acceleration. However, after that, it holds the line well and stays on the road just fine. Based on this owner’s opinion and testing, the Model 3 Autopilot is vastly improved.

Video Description via i1Tesla on YouTube:

Tested Autopilot on the curvy road I would test the older software updates on. It is a difficult road for the car in the past. It did amazing and I can’t wait to see what this car can do in the future.

Below is one of i1Tesla’s previous videos of Tesla Model 3 Autopilot on the same curvy road. You can tell immediately that it takes the curves with less consistency and even leaves the road at some points. Yes, there is some dirt on one part of the road due to construction, but even on the clean stretches of road, the technology is clearly struggling:


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36 Comments on "With New Update, Tesla Autopilot Seems Vastly Improved On Curvy Roads"

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The improvements since switching to AP2 two years ago are very dramatic. It’s impressive what they are able to do with just a couple cameras (pretty sure they aren’t using all 8 yet). Still, this is just lane-keeping. They said something about integrating NAV, which is another good step. These are a couple of important building blocks for Full Self Driving, but these blocks still need a lot of work and there are other basic building blocks they aren’t working on yet.

You can’t just extrapolate progress with something like this, but if I were to try I’d say they’re 20 years from FSD.

20…? More like 6 or 7, tops.

They claim the major challenge is reliable vision. Once that works really well, other things should start falling into place…

That’s what they say. No idea how true it is.

I was given Autopilot on my Model 3 free for two weeks. I have used it for a week so far and here are my impressions. 1. Auto steering is only good for freeway driving with well defined lanes. Any thing else is just dangerous 2. The cruise control is great until someone cuts you off then the car creates a dangerous situation where it slows down to 20 in a 50 zone. All in all it’s great for stop and go on the freeway and that is it. It is not anywhere worthy $5000

Simple request: can the article explicitly list the software version, instead of saying “the latest”? My car always seems to be a long while behind other folks and I would like to know if the “significant improvement” is what I have or if it’s something I can look forward to.

Splash image of original video says 2018.32.3

Clearly it’s the best autopilot currently available, and probably will be for years to come.

They really shouldn’t allow it to be turned on where it isn’t formally supported by Tesla.

“Auto steer is a beta product.

Autosteer is intended for use only on highways and limited-access roads with a fully attentive driver. When using Autosteer, hold the steering wheel and be mindful of road conditions and surrounding traffic. Do not use Autosteer on city streets, in construction zones, or in areas where bicyclists or pedestrians may be present.”

Please do not do user tests like this against the Tesla user manual. It’s dangerous and irresponsible.

And @loveday, if you are going to insist on continuing to give these fools credence by posting articles like this, would you consider making sure you post the caveat of the Tesla warning from the manual?

There is more clarification in the user warning:

“Autosteer works well on highways when there are clear lane markings or a car is directly ahead to follow. It does not function reliably when a road has very sharp turns or when lane markings are absent, faded or ambiguous. Autosteer functionality will also deteriorate in rainy, showy, or foggy conditions.”

The articles are posted to show what people have found based on the updates. The article doesn’t have a title or content that says “Please go do this because InsideEVs said so.” The warnings are out there for owners and all over the news. We’ve reported them many times, along with the accidents, fatalities, videos of the cars crossing the line, leaving the road, etc etc etc. We are, as usual, simply sharing what we find (the good and the bad) to give people perspective.

It is interesting that you posted a video of driving in a manner Tesla strongly warns against. There is only 1 hands off driving system in the market currently, and that is Cadillac Supercruise, and it’s not Beta.

Again, we don’t post it to show driving style or rule following. We post the videos when Autopilot is updated … for comparison to previous videos.

He’s clearly watching the road and the wheel and in control of the situation at all times and ready to take the wheel as needed in all the videos. In fact, in all of his previous videos, he is taking the wheel repeatedly when the system can’t handle it. He’s also driving 20 mph under the speed limit. It’s not as if we’re posting videos of a guy driving with his eyes closed or sleeping or allowing the car to run into trees and walls. The video of Elon Musk driving the Model 3 in Autopilot for the CBS morning video is much the same. He’s not holding the wheel, but he is engaged and prepared.

I added a disclaimer.

Jean-Baptiste Labelle

Does not exist in Europe, so useless but for small minority of people in very limited places.

I might try it out again when it stops killing people. The risk is that with every update behavior silently changes: sometimes for the better, other times for the worse. Tesla doesn’t make the changes publicly available, so I have no idea what to be on guard against.

Tesla themselves probably couldn’t tell me even if they wanted to. Neural networks can’t be reverse engineered, even by the trainers. As Siegfried and Roy could tell you, eventually you might be bitten.

And, finally, human brains are not made to babysit a robot. It doesn’t work, and that’s dangerous.

AP does not kill anybody. I use it all the time. It works great. If you really had a Model 3 you would know this.

I’ve been having fun playing with my 2 week free trial of Autopilot. I actually had to take a long trip (200 miles) and used Autopilot for 90% of it. I got into some curvy roads at 60mph and it handled it no problem. I did have my hands hovering over the wheel and foot over the pedal though, LOL. I’ve noticed the more I use it, the more confidence i get.

Same here, I’ve been testing the Autopilot the last few days. It works fine on curvy roads, the car stays solidly within the road lane markings.
Even though the system works, I’m not planning to buy Autopilot after the free trial period expires. I enjoy driving the car a lot more than having the car drive me.

Just too pricey for me. If I had to drive 100 miles/day, I’d consider it at $5k/$6k, but with my daily commute, it doesn’t make financial sense.

Steering assist is a gimmick at best, other then Cadillac Supercruise, which is truly hands free, and not beta.

On the other hand adaptive cruise control is fairly cheap, and gives you most of the functions..

It’s kind of relaxing. You just double-tap the stalk and let the car steer itself. You still pay attention, but it’s just one less thing to be constantly processing in the background.

It is hilarious how real users of the product keep contradicting those who are only here to attempt to denigrate Tesla and promote rival (using that term loosely) brands.

a “gimmick” doesn’t actually work, or is, at best, an unreliable toy. Tesla’s EAP is for real.

All I want is the adaptive cruise but I will not pay $5000. I would pay $1000 today if it were an option

Jean-Baptiste Labelle

No, it does not give you most of the functions. Who is using Supercruise, where, on how many cars?

@Kdawg said: “I’ve been having fun playing with my 2 week free trial of Autopilot. I actually had to take a long trip (200 miles) and used Autopilot for 90% of it…”

Out of curiosity… what are your thoughts pro/con of if after your trial expires Tesla offered AutoPilot on a subscription per-day use (i.e. $20/day)… meaning if you were taking a long road trip and wanted to use AutoPilot you could purchase it for the day for $20?

My fear would be that after not using it for some time, I may lose confidence in it again, but that’s an interesting idea. $20/day is still probably more than I would spend though, LOL.

Squirrels are not “wild life”, they are pests. And should be treated as such. You don’t brake for squirrels, you swerve to line them up with the tires.

This dude is too much of a salesman, and not a very good one. The lane holding was good, but even 15 miles below the speed limit it crossed the center line, and nearly went off on the right side. Why did he not show a video at the posted speed limit for the road? Are we to a point where a small baby step like this gets us excited? This salesman mentions full self driving, which as I see if for Tesla FSD stands for firetruck serious damage….

I refuse to believe that you are this stupid. Stop being obtuse. It crushes your credibility.

Just a comment on the speed on curves. I think AP uses GPS & the cameras to know a curve is coming, because on some curves it would slow down automatically before the curve. So even though you set the speed to say 60mph, it may reduce it to 45.

The road in the video looked simple to drive at 45 mph, I do not think Tesla is using GPS yet as for speed settings, I think it slows as it loses orientation to the lines at a distance ahead.

Regarding curves, this is based on what I experienced. For example when a curve was approaching, but not yet showing on the line display, my car would suddenly start slowing down.

AP does use GPS speed limits. For example, It will only allow 60mph in a 55mph zone, and 50mph in a 45mph zone. So if you cross into a 45mph zone, your AP will automatically slow the car down to 50mph.

Jean-Baptiste Labelle

Well, it must not be that easy when you see Jaguar cannot make it worked even on almost straight road with subtle curvature…