Tesla with Autopilot has nearly 10 times lower accident rate compared to normal cars in the US – Elon Musk – paultan.org04/21/2021
Tesla’s self-driving Autopilot feature has come under heavy scrutiny over the past few years, especially following increasing reports of crashes (some fatal) while the system is engaged. The situation seems to have improved, if the latest data released by the automaker is to be believed.
In the first quarter of 2021, Tesla registered one accident for every 4.19 million miles driven (6.74 million kilometres) in which drivers had Autopilot engaged. This increases to one accident for every 2.05 miles driven (3.3 million km) when Autopilot is not engaged, but with other advanced active safety features in play.
For those driving without Autopilot and without Tesla’s active safety features, there is one accident recorded for every 978,000 miles driven (1.57 million km). By comparison, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s most recent data shows that, in the United States, there is an automobile crash every 484,000 miles (778,922 km) on average.
Taking to Twitter, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said: “Tesla with Autopilot engaged now approaching 10 times lower chance of accident than average vehicle.” While this may be good news, note that statistics such as this can be quite varied.
In Q1 2020, Tesla registered one accident for every 4.68 million miles driven (7.53 million km) with Autopilot activated, which is a far better statistic than all the ensuing quarters since.
Meanwhile, in October last year, Tesla’s Autopilot system in the Model 3 was ranked sixth out of 10 by Euro NCAP. The assessment found that the Model 3 performed poorly in the field of driver engagement, because the Tesla’s steering strategy gave a more “binary impression” that either the car is driving itself or the driver has full control of the vehicle.
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