Tesla Is Offering Free Autopilot Acces for One Month to Model S and X Owners

Tesla Autopilot 1 photo
Photo: Screenshot from YouTube
So you've made the mistake of ordering your Tesla Model S or X without the Autopilot option. You got cheap and thought you won't really need that, since you enjoy driving your own car. But now the long, tedious drives down the highway are starting to get to you, so you wouldn't say no to somebody else doing the driving under those conditions.
No problem, thanks to Tesla's way of building its cars - installing all the hardware and blocking it via software for those who don't fork out the money - you are now given a second chance. For one month, you can experience the joys of Autopilot, and if you come to the conclusion that it's precisely what you needed, you can even unlock it for good.

If all this sounds like the sort of things you would do with a computer game, then you're not very far off. It's the same tactic used by game developers to convince players to invest in something they might otherwise ignore. It's true that you can live without something, but once you've tried it, once you've had access to that certain something for one month, you won't be able to go back to how things used to be.

It's not as if Tesla discovered a new method of selling stuff, it's just that something like this wasn't possible in the automotive world before. You couldn't just call in people to have a new engine installed, for example, and then remove it after one month unless they agreed to pay for it.

With Tesla, upgrades are a lot simpler. Since all cars manufactured after October 2014 have the necessary hardware built-in, the only thing keeping them from using the Autopilot feature is a piece of software. In exchange for $3,000 ($500 more than it would have cost initially), features like the automatic steering and speed, lane changing and parking with Summon become available via a wireless update. Your car can literally become semi-autonomous overnight.

Knowing that your car's abilities are only kept in check by some program’s limitations, however, must be pretty infuriating. And we wouldn't be surprised if somebody with experience in tinkering with software programs - affectionately known as "hackers" - were able to turn a base Model S or X into a fully specced one, as far as its features are concerned. Now here's a very good reason to become a hacker, if there ever was one.
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About the author: Vlad Mitrache
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"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
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