Tesla Autopilot on City Streets – Traffic Light and Stop Sign Control

Tesla has been touting Full Self-Driving “feature complete” for some time and promised it by the end of 2019. That deadline instead produced Full Self-Driving visualizations that showcased what the Full Self-Driving Computer (Hardware 3) can actually see.

However, for those who purchased the expensive Full Self-Driving package, two items were promised that had not yet been delivered.

  • Recognize and respond to traffic lights and stop signs.
  • Autosteer on City Streets (previously “Automatic driving on city streets).

With the 2020.12.6 software update in late April, 2020, Tesla has rolled out the “Traffic Light and Stop Sign Control (BETA)” feature which will stop the car for traffic lights and stop signs (however, the driver must initiate going again once safe to do so unless there’s a lead car). Here’s the description of the update:

Traffic Light and Stop Sign Control is designed to recognize and respond to traffic lights and stop signs, slowing your car to a stop when using Traffic-Aware Cruise Control or Autosteer. This feature will slow the car for all detected traffic lights, including green, blinking yellow, and off lights. As your car approaches an intersection, your car will indicate the intention to slow down via a notification, slow down, and stop at the red line shown on the driving visualization.

To continue through the stop line, push down the gear selector once or briefly press the accelerator pedal to confirm that it is safe to proceed. As with all Autopilot features, you must continue to pay attention and be ready to take immediate action, including braking because this feature may not stop for all traffic controls. This feature will be conservative, slow down often at first, and will not attempt to turn through intersections. Over time, as we learn from the fleet, the feature will control more naturally.

To enable, shift your car into PARK and tap Controls > Autopilot > Traffic Light and Stop Sign Control (Beta).

Here’s the official video from Tesla

Lots of YouTubers have already been trying it out (shown here with the latest version):

Of course, this is still in early beta release so users must remain extremely vigilant while using this, as with all Autopilot functions. As it states, it “may not stop for all traffic controls”, so pay close attention to this feature while using it!

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