Watch a Tesla Model 3 Fail an Automatic Braking Test and Vaporize a Robot Pedestrian
That's a bit unsettling.
Tesla has some of the most advanced and controversial assisted driving systems in the business. The technology allows the car to automatically change lanes, maintain its speed with radar, and it will automatically stop for pedestrians if you don't. Well, in theory, at least. Apparently it doesn't always stop, as you can see in this Chinese test of a Tesla Model 3's automatic braking capabilities that Jalopnik found on Twitter.
The dummy starts rolling towards the car—legs swinging away giddily—and when it gets in front of the Tesla the car just keeps on going and strikes the robot. Its legs fly off, the driver brings the car to a halt, and the dummy declares the field goal is good as it lays on the ground in faceless agony. And no, I don't know what's up with the music.
Other videos recorded by the same organization also tell much of the same story. A different Model 3, this time driving on a much wider road course, plows straight through a stationary pedestrian. It's not a glancing blow or a tap after the car had started braking, either.
In fact, the Chinese media organization claimed that Tesla's vehicles performed the worst in its evaluation of automating braking systems. This seems like a big blind spot in the system's capabilities, as Teslas striking stationary objects while Autopilot is engaged seems like something of a common occurrence. As we've covered before, Teslas have struck stationary police cars on multiple occasions, and even drove straight into an overturned box truck on the highway.
Autopilot has previously shown its adept ability to react to accidents as they happen, however, the driver is typically alert and paying attention in these instances. This is not the case in the situations previously mentioned. It's also obviously not the case when automatic braking systems are being tested.
So before you cough up $8,000 for "full self-driving" technology that isn't actually here yet, consider the fact that bugs like these still haven't been worked out. For all of Tesla's other innovations, the California company should be able to get to the bottom of this issue.
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