Tesla shares jump as Elon Musk says Autopilot will get ‘full self-driving feature’ in August

Musk, Tesla’s CEO, said that the self-driving features would come in August as part of a software upgrade for the car

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 12 June, 2018, 1:20am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 03 July, 2018, 8:22pm

Shares of Tesla Inc rose as much as 5 per cent on Monday after Elon Musk, the company’s founder and CEO, tweeted that its Autopilot driver assistance system would get full self-driving features following a software upgrade in August.

Autopilot, a form of advanced cruise control, handles some driving tasks though it warns those behind the wheel that they remain responsible for the vehicle’s safe operation. A spate of recent crashes has brought the system under regulatory scrutiny.

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“To date, Autopilot resources have rightly focused entirely on safety. With V9, we will begin to enable full self-driving features,” Musk tweeted on Sunday, referring to the latest version of the Autpilot programme, in response to a Twitter user.

Musk said that the autopilot issue during lane-merging is better in the current software and would be fully fixed in the August update.

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A consumer advocacy group on Friday urged Tesla to fix what it termed as “flaws” in Autopilot after a preliminary government report found that a Model X driver did not have his hands on the vehicle’s steering wheel in the final six seconds before a fatal crash on March 23.

“The software update is good news,” said Chaim Siegel, an analyst with Elazar Advisors, adding that Tesla shares were still benefiting from Musk’s prediction last week that the company would finally hit its production target for its Model 3 sedan.

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Tesla’s future profitability hinges on ramping up its Model 3 output, and the company has suffered from a series of failures to hit its weekly targets.