Last week Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced that Tesla will introduce a self-driving software update for the Model S by this summer.
According to Musk, the technology being introduced in this update will be enough to allow the vehicle to drive itself part of the time. Tesla plans this feature will be used mostly on commuter motorways like highways, or “major roads” as Musk calls them.
Musk said consumers should expect this update to be released in about three months, or, around June we could potentially see the Model S driving itself in what he refers to as “auto pilot” mode.
While Musk may already have a timetable for the update’s release, there’s still concern regarding this announcement and how autonomous driving will be handled from a legal standpoint. Karl Brauer, an analyst at Kelly Blue Book is stated in saying that “there’s a reason other automakers haven’t gone there.”
Although many states have passed laws allowing these self driving vehicles on the roads, that legislation was constructed for testing, not for actual drivers or consumers.
Brauer also went on to say that “Maybe Musk is hoping that by the summer he can get one state like California to sign off -but even that may be a stretch.”
The debate Tesla and many other car manufacturers are trying to overcome in relation to state lawmakers is who will be liable if there’s an accident? Will it be the driver? Or the company creating the software that drives the vehicle.
These answers have yet to be determined and we shall see over the next three months if there is any headway regarding the passing of autonomous vehicle legislation.