Tesla has announced that it will convert all Model 3 and Model Y vehicles in Europe and the Middle East markets to its camera-based Pure Vision approach starting this month. The “Tesla Vision” approach is radar-free and only uses the vehicle’s eight external cameras to perform semi-autonomous driving functions.
“We are continuing the transition to the Tesla Vision, a camera-based autopilot system,” Tesla wrote on its website. “Beginning with deliveries in April 2022, Model 3 and Model Y vehicles designed for the EMEA market will no longer be equipped with the radar. Instead, these will be Tesla’s first vehicles to rely on camera vision and neural network processing to deliver autopilot capabilities, and fully autonomous driving. and some active safety features.”
Temporarily, Autosteer features in these areas will be limited to a top speed of 80 mph and a longer following distance. Tesla took the same precautions when launching the Pure Vision in the US, Mexico and Canada last year.
In May 2021, Tesla said it would switch all Model 3 and Model Y vehicles in North America to the camera-based approach. It eventually added Model S and Model X cars within North America to the Pure Vision approach in February 2022.
Tesla Model 3, Model Y build in May 2021 no longer have radar
“In the coming weeks, we will begin to roll back these features via a series of over-the-air software updates. The automaker said all available Autopilot and Tesla Full Self-Driving features will be active upon delivery, depending on the configuration of the order.” According to the company’s FAQ page for the Pure Vision approach, moving to a camera-only system does not affect safety compliance in the context of European regulations. “Vehicles equipped with Tesla Vision maintain legally mandated collision safety compliance as radar-equipped vehicles.”
Tesla recently opened a new production facility in Germany, which will potentially supply Model Y cars to the Middle East market. For some time, Tesla’s Gigafactory Shanghai in China had been delivering Model 3 and Model Y to these regions as Gigafactory Berlin was waiting for German government officials’ approval.
The move to Pure Vision in Europe and the Middle East is just another step in CEO Elon Musk’s quest to use only cameras to complete Tesla’s self-driving project. Musk has talked about the move for some time, noting during his first-quarter 2021 earnings call that humans only use eyes to drive, and cars shouldn’t be any different.
“When your vision works, it works better than the best human being because it’s like having eight cameras, it’s like having eyes in the back of your head, next to your head, and having three eyes with different focal distances looking ahead. That’s — and processing it with uncanny speed,” Musk said. There is no doubt that with a pure vision solution we can make a car significantly safer than the average person.”
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