Manufacturing Minute: New Limits For Tesla's Autopilot

In this episode, Tesla plans to rein in its new autopilot function.

Tesla Motors made serious waves in the auto industry last month when it sent its latest software upgrade to owners of its Model S sedan. Although its much-touted autopilot system can't act as your own valet — yet — Teslas equipped with the software can help steer on the highway and assist in parallel parking.

Almost immediately, however, online forums and videos began detailing problems with the system, from taking surprising turns to drifting out of its lane — even into oncoming traffic. Tesla had stressed that the upgrade was never meant to be fully autonomous and that drivers should always keep their hands on the wheel.

Nevertheless, CEO Elon Musk said this week that the company would add constraints to prevent quote "people doing crazy things with it." Musk didn't go into details, leaving people to speculate just how limited autopilot will be — particularly with drivers paying thousands to access the feature.

SO WHAT DO YOU THINK?

Is Tesla right to limit technology that may not have been ready for prime time in the first place? As autonomous driving becomes more sophisticated, what safeguards should automakers consider?

Email us or leave your comments below.

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