Tesla’s Navigation Overhaul Could Bring Self-Driving Closer To Reality




Tesla Self-Driving

Tesla’s upcoming highly advanced navigation system may be a necessary step toward Full Self Driving capability.

Tesla’s navigation system has received plenty of negative reviews, especially as of late. With many cars today, people just use the advanced Google Maps system, which they’re likely already comfortable and familiar with. However, Tesla has its own proprietary technology. It’s not uncommon to see people posting some very strange routes compliments of the automaker’s navigation.

This is partly due to the fact that the automaker’s navigation system has received very few updates and it’s a work in progress, much like most of the Silicon Valley electric car maker’s technology. Since over-the-air updates are used to continuously rework software, Tesla has the ability to offer systems in the vehicles that aren’t fully functional or completely up to date. Over the course of the incremental update process, the systems improve.

Netherlands-based Tesla owner, Youri Hart, recently pointed out that his car has only received one minor navigation update over the course of several years. CEO Elon Musk quickly took to Twitter to announce that a significant navigation update is set to arrive in early 2018. He went on to say that it will be highly advanced in comparison to the current software.

Many people familiar with Tesla’s software systems believe that this “major navigation overhaul” is necessary for Autopilot 2.5. For autonomous features to function to the best of their ability, high-level navigation, GPS, maps, traffic updates, etc. are a given. It may be a long time before we see the official deployment of Full Self-Driving capability, though this is surely a step in the right direction.

Source: Teslarati

Categories: Tesla

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38 Comments on "Tesla’s Navigation Overhaul Could Bring Self-Driving Closer To Reality"

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Autonomous driving is about sensor technology, predicting driver, pedestrian, and cyclist behavior, and reacting to unusual situations correctly. It is less about knowing exactly where you are–that is static information. Fleet learning and great nav are red herrings.


One thing I cannot understand is how Tesla’s Autopilot can work well with only 1 camera at the center top of the windshield. I realize it is complemented with radar and sonar, but still.. I think the visual part should be binocular so images of the same scene can be combined in software to determine distance of artifacts. Actually I think there should be 4 forward facing cameras, 2 pairs at upper left and right corners of the windshield each pair consisting of 2 cameras about 5cm apart. This would give redundancy and greater accuracy.

Argg! I wish this forum had an edit function.
On second thought the camera pair should be about 10 cm apart.

I think the guy that de-orbits rockets and lands them on end on floating sea barges will do all right.

Cyclist behavior won’t ever be solved, they do wathever they want with no respect for pedestrians and cars, red lights…. yeah right no eventhat, no respect or the law, only the day they get fines like cars, EVs would safely self safe drive sharing the route with them.

Yes, some bicyclists are like some car drivers who text and talk on the phone and play with knobs instead focusing on driving.

Electro – That’s sort of like complaining that all BMW owners are jerks who have no respect for others, etc.

Just because you have observed some poor behavior doesn’t mean that all bicyclists flout the law.

Oh, just today I saved my life once more by not crossing the street when the pedestrian light turned green. A guy in a huge van came sailing through the red light at ~90 kph (speed limit is 50), when the pedestrian lights had already turned green.

More than daily I observe motorists not giving way to cyclists and simply ignoring them, knowing full well that the cyclist has no choice but to stop. You know which side that loses in case of a collision.

There is absolutely no reason AT ALL for car drivers to somehow feel ‘superior’ to cyclists.

Indeed! Having been a driver for decades and a regular bicycle rider for a far briefer period, I certainly agree that it’s the cyclist who needs to watch out for the inattentive or careless driver far more than the reverse. A bicycle banging into a car may, at worst, cause some probably minor damage to the car. A car banging into a bicycle rider… may well be the end of that cyclist’s life.

And it’s even worse these days than back in my cyclist days, with so many people looking at their cellphone while driving!

This is a true statement yet needs expansion. Autonomous drive has been broken into 5 levels with Level 1 and Level 2 tools appearing over the last few years. Looking for Level 5 when we really haven’t seen Level 4 or even full Level 3 is a bit ridiculous. That being said, we will see the massive paradigm shift occur between 2018 – 2022 which really is a blink of the eye when considering the disruption. I have little doubt that Tesla will release substantial tools in 2018. Though I am opting to pay the full autopilot price on my registered Model 3, I am quite willing to wait for certain functionality that will ultimately change the world of transportation. Part of the wait will be legislation vs technology. IMO, and that is all it is, I think a majority of vehicles on the road must be equipped with Level 2 auto braking to handle the scenarios that you have described. I think technology (erroring on the side of caution), will do a better job of braking for anomalies than we think. The problem is whether other non-Level 2 vehicles will react accordingly or do we get a lot of… Read more »

@ Six Electrics
GM’s Super Cruise relies on and incorporates LiDAR mapping data; the company says it has mapped every highway mile of U.S. and Canada—160,000 in total—to ensure the system’s primed to work.
Source: Online news media

So it’s a L3 system and relies on great nav.

Would be nice if your opinions are rooted in facts.

Thank you.

Claiming that self-driving systems are all about building a “situational awareness” simulation of the immediate environment, and not at all about navigation, is as silly as claiming that all a pilot needs to fly to his plane to its destination is good eyesight and a functional set of flight controls; that GPS and/or maps are not needed.

Both the SLAM system to provide the car with a real-time “situational awareness” simulation, and the stored data for navigation, are equally important when it comes to making a practical self-driving system.

160,000 miles? There are more miles of highway than that just in Virginia, and that’s just the highways.

US Interstate system is about 55,000 miles. Major US and state highways add another 50-100,000, depending on definitions.

Rural highways are much more numerous. GM isn’t doing those.

“It may be a long time before we see the official deployment of Full Self-Driving capability, though this is surely a step in the right direction.”

How is that? I think, the customers who opted and paid for full self driving capitability were told a different story.

You’ve all been fed a lie imo. The current vehicles don’t have the redundancy that is required for FSD. Anyone that tells you current Tesla’s have enough hw don’t understand what’s required for fsd.

Early 2018 could mean 1st half of 2018. But for Tesla, this really means October or November, possibly slipping into March 2019…

FSD will not happen in any of Tesla’s current models.

Says which expert?

You should inform yourself of the specification for level 5, that will answer your question.

If you pay for the FSD (Full Self-Drive) option, then Tesla is obligated to deliver on that promise. I think that will ultimately mean that everyone who has currently paid for FSD will have to bring his car to a Tesla service center for a hardware upgrade, because I still don’t think that anyone — not even Tesla — can achieve Level 4 or 5 autonomous driving without LiDAR sensors.

Heck, Tesla is already putting HW 2.5 into its cars in production, and according to apparently reliable reports on the Tesla Motors Club forum, HW 3.0 is in development.

I think it’s an overstatement to call the FSD promise for current Tesla cars a “lie”; rather it has been shown to be an aspirational but not realistic goal to achieve full self-driving capability with current hardware.

I don’t see how cameras will work – the rear view camera on vehicles is often covered in snow, ice, dirt, dust, moisture, etc which blocks or distorts the image.

Has Tesla found a solution to this problem?

Yeah its called a washer, like my explorer have in the front and rear cameras

May I remind that Tesla didn’t keep its promise to have a fully automatic drive from West to East of the State , that according to the Prophet Musk should have happened in Nov-Dec 2017

Nope 🙁

To be fair that was an aspiration not something that he said would actually happen right?? 😉

I am sure that better maps would help any FSD driving endeavor but it is only a part of it, frankly I think a relatively small part. It can’t be that hard to,program something to follow a route but I Imagine it is extremely difficult to program in the ability to handle other cars, bikes, road issues, etc..

“To be fair that was an aspiration not something that he said would actually happen right?? ?”

Hmmm, if you really did mean “to be fair” to Tesla, it would be the first time, DJ.

The coast-to-coast self-driving demo that Elon… let’s say predicted rather than “promised”, as that is actually more accurate… was certainly something Elon repeatedly told us was going to happen before the end of 2017.

But as has been repeatedly shown, what Tesla (or its chief spokesman, Elon Musk) predicts it will do, does generally happen… just not as soon as Elon predicted it would.

If you want to call that an “aspirational” goal I certainly wouldn’t argue, DJ. However, the smiley you put there seems to indicate you were trying to be sarcastic… and failing, because arguably that is an accurate description.

I find it – to say the least – problematic, to take real dollars for an “aspirational goal” – which actually has never been realistic.

When selling these systems, they were either technologically ignorant (in contrast to their claim to be a leader in this field), or the FSD claim it was actually a lie.

Or, third possibility: The engineers at Tesla know more than you (and I) do about the subject.

I scoffed when Tesla claimed it could detect a car on the road with an intervening vehicle in the way, by bouncing a radar beam off the pavement underneath the intervening car. Guess what? I was wrong! Tesla proved it could do just that. Now, I don’t know that they can do it reliably, and I still think that Tesla will eventually put LiDAR into their self-driving or semi-self-driving cars.

But unlike you, Gagaga, I don’t mistake my mere opinion on the subject with an actual fact. In asserting that Tesla’s claim is a “lie”, you are doing exactly the same thing you’re complaining that Tesla is doing: Acting on your assumption as if it’s established fact.

That thing they say about assumptions? You’re doing just that.

@EJ “program in the ability” is not how this works. The learning DNN (AI) does all the programming (in this case data collection and interpretation).

Unfortunately for Tesla, they aren’t using DNN tech. All cars will need at least a computer upgrade to do FSD.

And I’m not pulling this rabbit from some hat. GM engineers are saying the same thing.

Also, Tesla cars can never achieve Level 5. Level 5 is zero human controls. IOW all robo controls. They’d have to remove the steering wheel, pedals, etc. to get Level 5.

Haha, early 2018 means mid 2019.

Even with the ramp delay the Model 3 is still being delivered very early. The big battery was delivered early. Probably time for this meme to die.

Right so late means very early now… lol

When it comes to Model 3 production, yes it most certainly does! This despite all the “stages of grief” posts you serial Tesla bashers keep posting; your repeated attempts to deny that the Model 3 actually went into production months earlier than previously predicted!

Go Tesla!

Whatever. All that matters now is whether the sheer freefall drop in Model 3 at ~$44k+ happens Soon, and whether the “Means Nothing” Of a Model 3 Fully refundable Waitlist evaporates or Not, to somehow attain 2018 USA-only sales of over 100k cars (which is less than 2k/week production). Because there will be no Intl Model 3 Sales In 2018.

LOL! So now a prediction is an actual public statement? Musk told everyone what the production ramp was going to be in the summer of ’17, that wasn’t a prediction, that as a public statement made by Tesla. And it has failed miserably. Never mind the fixes that are going to have to happen to these poor soles that are receiving their 45k cars now.

“…that wasn’t a prediction, that as a public statement made by Tesla.”

Here’s a prediction: I predict that you Tesla haters will never stop making up FUD and B.S. to bash Tesla with, because Tesla’s ongoing success terrifies you and is probably causing you to lose money. That prediction is also now a public statement, since I’m posting it in a public forum.

This thing where you Tesla haters keep trying to redefine words and terms to fit your FUD… not working for you, Loser!

I have owned many expensive vehicles, including exotics but nothing compares to Tesla navigation. The huge screen makes things so easy. Especially how you can manipulate the screen around . The resolution and response rate has no comparison. Just touch on the screen where you want to go. I love everything my Model X as it is bleeding edge technology. No other old school car compares, period! Tesla has autonomous data worth billions of dollars being collected by its 200,000 vehicles driving around. Both the military and Apple have had discussions with Tesla.