With the new firmware release version 9.0, Tesla especially put a focus on its ‚Navigate on Autopilot‘ feature which brings more automation on the Tesla Autopilot while driving on highways. For using ‚Navigate on Autopilot‘ the path has to be planned and a destination has to be set in the navigation system. The drive can then choose different modes which determines how aggressive and fast Autopilot changes lanes. Beside ‚mild‘ and ’standard‘ mode there is also the so called ‘Mad Max‘ mode available, which Tesla CEO Elon Musk already announced earlier. With Mad Max mode set (in Tesla’s settings menu), lane changes take place much faster. While navigating on Autopilot driver see as usual the blue steering wheel (autosteer logo) and the path of the vehicle as a blue line on the instrument cluster.
Navigate on Autopilot feature is still a level 2 autonomous system which suggests lane changes to get to your destination, which Tesla describes as follows:
“By default, Navigate on Autopilot requires the driver to confirm automatically-initiated lane changes by pushing the turn signal in the intended direction of the lane change.
You may choose to disable the turn signal confirmation for automatically-initiated lane changes, but you must be aware that lane changes may happen quickly and at any time. Disabling the turn signal confirmation does NOT alleviate the driver of responsibility to keep their hands on wheel and carefully monitor the vehicle’s surroundings.”
When Tesla originally talked about autonomous On Ramp to Off Ramp for its Enhanced Autopilot many drivers thought the automaker will achieve already a level 3 autonomous driving system with the release of software version 9. So keeping this in mind and knowing that ‚Navigate on Autopilot‘ is still a feature in beta state, drivers always have to be pay attention, be extremely carefully when using the autonomous system and stay ready to take control at all times.