By Hyunjoo Jin and Eva Mathews
(Reuters) – Tesla Inc chief Elon Musk said the firm is tweaking its autonomous driving software to “eliminate the phantom braking problem” and could launch a greatly improved version in a couple of months.
Shares of Tesla fell 2.7% to $ 600.42 in morning trading, on course for a third straight decline. Federal and state regulators in the United States have been examining the company’s semi-automatic driving system after accidents in Texas and other areas.
“I think we are a month or two away from a broad ‘beta’. However, these things are difficult to predict accurately,” Musk said in a tweet. In April he said he would be “surprised” if the broad beta service was available after June, calling the May launch “aspirational.”
In October, Tesla launched a pilot program of its long-publicized autonomous driving technology (FSD) in beta to a limited number of employees and customers, but has delayed the more widespread rollout.
“We had to focus on removing the radar and confirming security,” Musk said, referring to his plan to rely on cameras for his system.
When asked by a Twitter user whether his vision system will eliminate the problem of “phantom braking,” in which Tesla cars sometimes apply the brakes abruptly when passing under an overpass or bridge, he said “yes. “.
In March, Tesla told California regulators that it may not achieve full self-driving technology by the end of this year. It currently offers a Driver Assistant, Level 2 technology that requires driver supervision, he noted.
Software subscriptions for the system would be offered within a month, Musk said without elaborating.
(Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin in Berkeley, California, and Eva Mathews in Bengaluru; edited in Spanish by Carlos Serrano)