Tesla CEO Elon Musk personally accepted the 2020 Axel Springer Award today in Germany, and sat down to chat with Axel Springer CEO CEO Mathias Döpfner.
One of the questions posed for Musk was regarding when Tesla would be able to release full-self driving vehicles. Musk answered to say he was “extremely confident of achieving full autonomy and releasing it to the Tesla customer base next year.”
One year from now would be December 2021, and if there’s a delay, that FSD release would easily slip into early 2022. Clever Elon.
Before answering Döpfner’s question, Musk said he’s not against people driving, but said it would be “increasing unusual to drive your own car” in the future.” He said while it’s fun to drive a well handling and beautiful car on good terrain, “it’s no fun in gridlock traffic.” The Tesla CEO said people are unlikely to want to commute with their cars, detailing how some people spend anywhere from 1-3 hours per day driving to and from work, especially in California, saying “it’s pretty crazy”.
Musk said if we fast forward to ten years from now, almost all new cars will have full autonomy capabilities. He said the vast majority of these new cars will be electric vehicles at 70-80% and “almost all autonomous.” Musk said it takes longer for cars to get replaced so 20 years from the point of all new cars being electric, will only from that point on will these non-autonomous cars be replaced.
The Tesla CEO added there’s an uncertain period of time as to how long regulatory approval will take, but the company will have accumulated “billions of kilometres in autonomous driving,” which would be hard to argue against it. Musk noted if people look at the accident rate of autonomous versus non-autonomous, the numbers show there’s a difference. This is also the case with today’s current version of basic Autopilot said Musk.
Döpfner pressed Musk and asked if this would be Level 5 full autonomy, which requires no human intervention. Musk confidently said “yes” a couple of times.
As for when Tesla’s autonomous driving will debut in Europe? Musk clarified it is “hard to say exactly when it will be approved,” noting European Union regulators are the “most conservative” and they should “maybe meet more often instead of just six months.” Musk added at least some jurisdictions will allow for Full Self-Driving next year.
Currently, Tesla is testing its Full Self-Driving in beta, currently only available in the United States, but “hopefully” it will launch in Canada this month, said Musk last month.
You can watch the chat down below which starts at the 15-minute mark:
Also, Musk admitted during the chat he will be sleeping at Giga Berlin tonight, inside a conference room. Savage.