Published: Tue, July 09, 2019
Markets | By Otis Pena

Self-driving chip upgrade could come to older Teslas this year

Self-driving chip upgrade could come to older Teslas this year

The Model S and Model X have separate instrument clusters in front of the steering wheel that the Model 3 lacks, and have a vertical center touch screen, both of which require engineers to program separate display outputs for every new feature the company introduces.

Tesla's chief executive Elon Musk on Monday night dispelled earlier reports that a major refresh to the company's Model S and X was being planned. The automaker claims that the chip provides 21 times the performance of the Nividia chip it replaces, but Nividia disputes that claim.

Before its announcement, the new chip has been shipping in Model S, X, and 3 vehicles, and soon will be offered as an update to half a million Tesla owners.

All vehicles made since around the end of 2016 are able to receive the self-driving chip, Musk said, and all Tesla vehicles produced in recent months already include it.

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The company estimates that there are approximately 500,000 cars that are compatible with the new chip.

For now, the Full Self-Driving package ordered by so many Tesla customers equipped their auto exclusively with a Navigate on Autopilot feature, which the automaker says lets the vehicle handle "on-ramp to off-ramp" highway driving, including self-directed lane changes and interchange navigation.

Musk yesterday confirmed the likely price increase when asked on Twitter if consumers have limited time left to buy a Tesla vehicle before prices "go up severalfold to balance supply and demand" once the company solves full self-driving.

The name of the Full-Self Driving package has been controversial.

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