Elon Musk: Tesla ‘very close’ to level 5 autonomy

Tesla’s basic functionality for Level 5 autonomy is complete, says CEO Elon Musk.

Musk virtually attended the World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC) in Shanghai and took part in a Q&A session.

Musk oversees many AI-related initiatives, but the most influential one is Tesla’s attempt to develop a complete Level 5 self-driving network.

Musk briefly addressed Tesla’s attempt to achieve complete self-driving at the meeting, and showed great confidence in implementing such a system soon:

I am extremely confident that level or essentially complete autonomy will happen, and I think will happen very quickly. I think at Tesla, I feel like we are very close to level 5 autonomy.

The CEO added:

I think that I remain confident that we will have basic functionality for level 5 autonomy this year.

This remark is more in line with his previous claims of a “feature complete” version of full-self-driving.

As Musk spoke of a “feature complete” version of Tesla’s full self-driving program, it means closing the gap between the highway driving of the Autopilot and features such as Smart Summon with city driving capabilities.

Tesla recently made strides towards that with its new feature “Traffic Light and Stop Sign Control.”

If Tesla reaches a “feature complete” version, or now, as he has just described, “basic features for level 5 autonomy,” it does not mean that Tesla vehicles will be completely self-driving.

The automaker would still need to improve the system.

During the conference Musk added:

I think there are no fundamental challenges remaining for level 5 autonomy. There are many small problems. And then there’s the challenge of solving all those small problems and then putting the whole system together. And then keep addressing the long tail of problems. So, you’ll find that you are able to handle the vast majority of situations.

The CEO added that Tesla is training its system to handle the very odd situation that you can encounter on the road:

You have to have the system figure out and train to deal with these odd situations. This is why you need the kind of real-world situations. Nothing is more complex and weird than the real world.

That’s where Tesla profits from having hundreds of thousands of on-road vehicles fitted with sensors and camera feeding the company details.

Here is the video interview from the World Conference on Artificial Intelligence (WAIC) in Shanghai:

Musk’s new display of confidence about Tesla’s ability to produce an autonomous Level 5 driving network comes as the automaker is undertaking a significant rewrite of its Autopilot platform to be unveiled in the coming months.

Reported by Electrek.

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