To be clear, the technology actually does stop at traffic lights and stop signs. However, it's in beta form to keep drivers safe. So, it's supposed to stop at all lights – yes even green lights – until you verify and tell it otherwise. It also has some conservative settings at this point, including Autopilot speed limit restrictions.
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YouTuber Black Tesla takes us out with him on his first drive with the new feature. It gives us a pretty solid idea of how it works. We've watched several videos to keep track of the positive and negative experiences with the software update, and there are plenty of both, as is expected with a beta system.
The feature seems to work as specified most of the time, but it has some quirks. Fortunately, Tesla will take all of this data and work to incrementally update the technology. One common issue is bridge overpasses and deactivated lights tricking the system. Since the driver is still in control and must interact with the system, a certain level of safety is assumed. However, having your car stop suddenly in the middle of a busy highway isn't safe. As always, remain aware and in control of the vehicle at all times.
Black Tesla has spent more time with the car now. He released a second full review video of the Tesla update. We've included it below, along with several other videos for more perspectives.
If you have the update and have had time to test it out, scroll down and leave us your observations in the comment section.
Video Description via Black Tesla on YouTube:
Tesla (2020.12.6) Traffic Light Awareness First Drive!
This is our first drive of Tesla's new software update 2020.12.6 which brings Traffic Light & Stop Sign Awareness! Our car can now drive on Autopilot w/ Full Self-Driving Computer Enabled and Recognize and Stop at traffic lights, and stop signs.