By Carl Reese
January 10th 2016
Last month, I warned our readers that changes were coming from Telsa Motors. Specifically, to the autopilot feature. Changes that would make it impossible to break the “Autonomous EV Record”. Well, don’t say I didn’t warn you. Yesterday the rumored 7.1 software update from Telsa Motors was released. Among the new features in the latest release, are some serious restrictions to the “AutoPilot” feature. This should come as no surprise of you that read my TDA article in December.
First, lets talk about the good news. Owners can now “Summon” their car with a key fob from 39′ away. Videos hitting the net today reveal it the features in action. As promised from Elon Musk last year, the car will also open your automatic garage door and pull out of the garage.
Now for the BAD NEWS! ……..Before you download 7.1 you should know it will disable your ability to break the Autonomous EV Record.
Once you have updated, you can’t go back. So let this be a warning to those assembling a “dream team”. to beat the autopilot record. You may want to skip this latest update! I will tell you how.
First lets talk about what it’s going to do to Autopilot. Version 7.1 places some heavy restrictions on autopilot. If you accept this update you will not be able to activate autopilot unless there is a center barrier. WHAT? Say good-bye to surface street autopilot for now. Even worse, you will not be able to set it above 5 mph over the posted speed limit.
I’m not sure to thank Tesla, or curse them. The offered update will make it impossible for anyone to break the “Autonomous EV Record”. On the other hand you can’t get the summoning feature without accepting the autopilot neuter. If you read my earlier post (back in Dec 2015) you already knew this was coming.
How can you preserve your chances at setting the record?
The 7.1 comes as a OTA (over the air) update. This update does not require you to a visit a Tesla service center. These updates happen over your home WIFI connection. To prevent the download simply go into the cars setting and turn off the WIFI. These updates require large bandwidth, therefore TelsaMotors doesn’t use LTE or 3G for updates.
Having the ability to summon your car with your key fob is quite cool. However, if you rather have an “Autopilot” that can have the ability to cruise at “freeway speeds”, skip this update.