Autonomous Tesla Taxis

Autonomous Tesla Taxis

Given the press of late, the 4/22 announcement will reveal substantial progress on Tesla's autonomous car project. There is even talk that the price for the complete autonomous driving package will increase in price because the value of the cars will increase instead of depreciate -- Tesla intends to rake off some of the added value with higher pricing. Elon is of the opinion that Tesla owners will turn their car loose to serve as a taxi picking people up and dropping them off without a driver behind the wheel. That way, the cost goes down as the car earns money for you while you're at work or asleep.

Uh no, not at my house. There is no way I would ever let my car loose to pick up drunks who puke on my seats, engage in wild sex in the back as the car tools down a coastal road with a romantic sunset happening out at sea, or picks up vandals who take a knife to my car's seats because they don't like snooty, rich Tesla owners and their cars.

Nope, not interested. There is zero chance I'd ever subject my Model X to the indignities taxicabs suffer every day.

To pick up and transport family and friends? Yeah, sure, but you ain't earning money on that.

I also think Tesla's rosy projection that the federal, state and local governments will turn driverless cars loose on public roads any time soon a pipe dream. Just don't see it happening. That is not how it is going to work any time soon, IMO.

One more thing, I bought a MX because I love to drive it. Safer with AI in charge be damned, I like to drive my car because it's fun -- excepting bumper to bumper traffic where I think autopilot is a terrific idea.

What do you guys think?

Tesla2018 | 18. April 2019

When I use navigate on autopilot, the car slows down and turns into the other lane annoying people that might be going faster. This is with it set to automatically change lanes. I don't do this anymore due to the danger. Also the car does not recognize if it is in a construction zone and speed limit is lower, or if it is in a school zone which has a lower speed limit at certain times of the day. A national system has to be set up in order to determine speed limits work zones, Lane markers Etc. In addition there may be problems if there is snow on the road or fog prevents the car from seeing the traffic light is red. I don't think I've ever been able to drive more than 50 miles straight on a highway without having to make an adjustment for autopilot due to not being able to merge into or out of traffic, or large trucks which get extremely close to me.

I think it will probably be at least 10 to 15 years before cars can automatically drive themselves on roads especially back roads
,, and shopping centers with cars moving in and out all the time..

EVRider | 19. April 2019

I wouldn’t put my cars in the Tesla Network either, for the same reasons stated by the OP.

carlk | 20. April 2019

One possibility is when trade in time comes I can just put it in the TeslaNet using the income to supplement new car payments.

El Mirio | 20. April 2019

@Clark, or companies which buy fleet cars, they could use TeslaNetwork on the weekend or after hours to earn extra cash.

Also I would imagine car rental companies to buy as many FSD cars as they can get their hands on, they would have it best of both worlds, earning money on TeslaNetwork and be able to rent to folks which still want to drive.

jordanrichard | 20. April 2019

Can people exaggerate just a touch more about picking up strangers.....One, if you are quaking in your boots about your car picking up “drunks” from the bar, then don’t have your car utilized late at night. When Elon first mentioned the Tesla network, he gave the example of what they were thinking of and that was your car being a “taxi” while you were at work.

Also, don’t forget that Tesla put that rearward facing camera below the rear view mirror to keep an eye on things.

BTW, I from time to time do Uber with my MS so I am speaking from experience. When I do it, it is typically from 7 - 11 pm and 99.9999976% of the time it is just people going to and from work, going to and from another house, going to or from a restaurant, to or from the airport, to and from concerts. Etc. So people need to apply some critical thinking and stop having a media projected, one sided view of people who use Uber/Lyft. To say that people using ride sharing platforms are a bunch of sex craved drunks is to say that all Tesla owners are a bunch of tree hugging, wealthy, liberal snobs........

EVRider | 20. April 2019

@jordanrichard: On the other hand, no one really knows what some people will do if there’s no driver in the car.

dmm1240 | 20. April 2019


I don't recall reading any one sided media stories, practically no stories at all. You can make your car available if you wish. Me? I'm not interested and not having it.

Dramsey | 20. April 2019

Given the lots of people rent out their fancy cars on services like Turo, I'm sure there's a fair number of Tesla owners who would be happy to have their expensive cars generating some cash for them.

I'm not one of them, mind you.

But even if you are one of them, you probably shouldn't hold your breath. The history of autopilot and FSD is a years-long trail of missed deadlines and broken promises; and while NoA is certainly cool and more functional than anything else out there, I'm sure we can all agree it's a LONG LONG WAY from the true autonomy you'd need to make a Tesla Taxi service possible.

But maybe Elon will surprise us with something dramatic. You know, like he did with that FSD video back in 2016.

(Actually even if Tesla introduced rock-solid full Level 5 autonomy on Monday, it will be years before the yahoos at NHTSA approve it. Those goobers still can't make up their minds about the matrix headlights Europe's been using for close to a decade now.)

NKYTA | 20. April 2019

@Dramsey, ditto on not farming out one of our Teslae. Ditto on the fact that laws and regulations will be way behind.

I disagree here
“But maybe Elon will surprise us with something dramatic. You know, like he did with that FSD video back in 2016.”

We got lucky to participate, on a planned route. My wife was “not driving” and I was in the back seat of the S. I don’t think the video ever got us our other 12s of fame, but it was real.

If all Tesla wanted to do was eat Wayno’s lunch in Phoenix with a preplanned route, I’m pretty sure they can do that today.

I support the larger vision of actual auto-driving, but even Elon is a ways away, but I think is the leader still.

Dramsey | 20. April 2019

"We got lucky to participate, on a planned route. My wife was “not driving” and I was in the back seat of the S. I don’t think the video ever got us our other 12s of fame, but it was real."

So, you've actually been in a Tesla running some form of REAL FSD? Cool! When was this?

NKYTA | 20. April 2019

Late 2016.