Why I just locked in full self-driving purchase. Anyone else buy FSD?

Why I just locked in full self-driving purchase. Anyone else buy FSD?

1.) We all had faith when most of us put a down payment for a car that did not even exist yet and then a nonrefundable $2,500 order placement. Elon had faith too when he sunk his PayPal windfall into Tesla when it was going under at one point.

2.) I believe $5k will be the absolute lowest price FSD will be.It would not surprise me it one day drives up to 7 or $8k. FSD was a true bargain when they had it for $3k on car delivery.

3.) I will buy it anyway when it comes out so might as well get it over with. Also made a good end of year purchase to add onto tax deductible purchases. Excited to be aboard the first wave that will have it!

4.) No vaporware scare with recent news looking as Hardware 3 is soon to be deployed with employees for beta testing. They will swap pre-ordered FSD customers computers over to HW3 when it’s ready. Fingers crossed its out before 2020 is over!  Would be a treat if its this year!

And finally, nothing ever gets doing without being perceived by some as a bit crazy!

RES IPSA | 1 gennaio 2019

I am glad that you are excited and satisfied with your choice to pay the 5k now for FSD. I have looked at this from a different perspective...

1. FSD is not transferable to a future purchase of a Tesla Vehicle. If it were transferable at least one time to a future Tesla purchase, i would have spent the money.

2. I do not believe Tesla will have Level 5 autonomous cars on the roadway for the general public by 1/1/24.

3.By the time Level 5 is available for me to purchase, I will want a new car anyways with a better and larger battery pack along with improved safety features (better brakes, airbags, etc.). I will just buy a level 5 car when they are available to purchase.

4. And maybe I won't even want a Level 5 vehicle when they first become available. I believe that Level 5 autonomous vehicles, when there are few on the road at the beginning, could add significant time to your commute as I can assume that the vehicle will always exercise caution (more caution that may be necessary. Once a vast majority of vehicles are level 5, they should be able to merge, change lanes, etc. at high speeds... much faster than I can do. However, it would be nice to get into the car at midnight, tell it to drive me to Denver, and wake up at St. George, UT while the car is still driving.

walnotr | 1 gennaio 2019

I opted for the FSD shortly before picking up the car. My motivation was the promise to upgrade to HW3 when available. If that doesn’t happen I will be sorely disappointed. Even if Level 5 doesn’t happen, the enhanced hardware should be capable of vastly improving EAP and get us on the road to L5. Even L4 would make long distance travel even easier than it is now.

M3phan | 1 gennaio 2019

@RES IPSA: 100% agree. The HW3 upgrade is initially only going to improve processing speed, not unlock higher level autonomy. By the time that level is available - and it has passed all the state and federal levels of approval - I’ll be in the market for my next Tesla, at which time I will gladly pay for FSD.

TAC | 1 gennaio 2019

Cool thanks for the insight. I expect my car to last 10+ years and as its my first new car and plan on running with it until it does not make sense to keep it going anymore. I am optimistic that I will have it before 2020. If its later than that then my judgement was apparently way off. Not a crazy high mile driver either I am actually below average since I work at home mostly. If i can keep the car running and looking good for 15 / 20 years awesome. My truck that I retired is from 2000 and is still fully functional today.

M3phan | 1 gennaio 2019

@TAC: it makes sense why you purchased FSD. Good on you for keeping cars going strong that long!

M3phan | 1 gennaio 2019

PS: make sure you keep your battery conditioned well if you’re keeping it that long.

TAC | 1 gennaio 2019

@M3phan . Thanks .. Also with the price increasing form 3k to 5k to me it signals Tesla may have leaped closer to FSD online day!

Also what do you mean by conditioned well? Charging habits? Keeping it in a controlled temp garage?

M3phan | 1 gennaio 2019

Yes, charging habits, a plugged in Tesla is a happy Tesla. So plug in every night, generally keep charge between 20% and 80%, couple times a year - to help recalibrate the state of charge - charging to 100% then discharging down to 10%, making sure in those special times to not leave the car sitting at 100% without immediately driving it.
These charging habits will keep your battery healthy and happy, from my research in the matter.

M3phan | 1 gennaio 2019

PS: by keeping between 20-80%, I mean charging nightly to 80% and not letting it discharge below 20%...with the exception of the annual recalibration (100% down to 10%).

gballant4570 | 1 gennaio 2019

The Tesla should last a lot longer than 10 years. Almost all ICE cars do, and a Tesla should have the life of two ICE cars. And the battery will last as well - just plug it in every day, charge to 90%. Simple.

843TM3 | 1 gennaio 2019

I bought FSD as well although I bought it at the 3k price. I wouldn’t have done it any other way as the minute that AP features are released that only FSD purchasers will have access too I will have to have it and knew that I would regret not doing it. I feel like the decision is already going to pay off with a swap out to AP hardware 3 in the coming months.

creativeguy | 1 gennaio 2019

Elon makes a lot of mistakes, but at the end of the day he seems to be an honest guy who (eventually) delivers on his promises. I believe he'll deliver on the FSD promise sooner than later. If you've used EAP over the past 6 months you can tell that the tech is progressing quickly. I can't wait!

thedrisin | 2 gennaio 2019

I did not purchase the FSD option at time of delivery. For one thing, the definition of what that is was nebulous. What does "FSD" mean in terms of actual SAE levels of autonomous driving? The more I use EAP, I actually realize how far we have to go just to get to level 3 ("eyes off"). At this point we are at early beta testing with Autopilot features, and which is approved use in only limited circumstances. The car cannot even differentiate an entrance ramp from a lane and recenters in Autosteer. The driver must be in control and take over at any instant. The car cannot self park without hitting a pillar! I can't even imagine poorly marked roads, obstacles, construction zones, etc. Things we deal with everyday and take for granted. Actual non-geofenced level 5 is far off. I don't think we will get to mainstream level 4 before 2025.

howard | 2 gennaio 2019

No, I feel the same as RES IPSA & thedrisin. Long ways off and a new car.

thedrisin | 2 gennaio 2019

@TAC. It is unlikely that the car you buy today will have adequate technology in 20 years from now. Changes will be much more than just a computer chip. Newer, more advanced cameras, sensors, and other new, yet to come technology, will probably be required for high level autonomy. Look at the changes since 1998, 20 years from now will be light years ahead.

EVRider | 2 gennaio 2019

If anyone is thinking about purchasing FSD for a recently-delivered Tesla (any model), ask Tesla if they’ll do it for $3,000. I asked, and they agreed to do it (for a Model S).

gballant4570 | 2 gennaio 2019

I want FSD at some point, but did not include it in my M3 configuration. My reasoning was the Maryland tax rebate price cap of $60k - over that, you lose the $3k rebate. FSD was part of my rationale for buying the car to start with.

But 3 months in, and I haven't yet really tried EAP. I no longer have a commute, so the kind of motivation I read about of this forum for EAP isn't present for me. I will need to get EAP going before taking some longer road trips this year however.

I still want FSD however, but I may wait a bit longer. Current market volatility isn't making me feel like I have a lot of spare $ at the moment.....

TeslaMarque | 2 gennaio 2019

Anyone who owns a Model 3 can sign on and go to manage vehicle, and click on Model 3 Shopping or something and you can add the FSD package as a stand alone purchase/upgrade to your car for $5,000. I don’t understand why anyone would buy this, as I don’t believe you’ll get anything whatsoever for your money right now. It would be like a $5,000 Kickstarter campaign or something, as I don’t think adding this will add a single thing to your vehicle right now. Correct me if I’m wrong.

The only reason I could see anyone purchasing this after delivery, right now, would be to hedge against a further price increase. Don’t get me wrong, if they eventually add some kind of FSD features, and they add value for me, I will prob buy it, but I need to see what it does, and when it will do it first. For me, it was worth the extra $2,000 ($3,000 cost prior to ordering when I ordered in July 18) to wait and see.

gballant4570 | 2 gennaio 2019

TeslaMarque, one thing you would get for adding FSD right now is a free processor upgrade that is scheduled for 2019. You would also get any other hardware upgrades that emerge as FSD develops - and it looks like there may be a few more.

gballant4570 | 2 gennaio 2019

Sorry, shouldn't have called the processor upgrade "free"...... you got to pay for the FSD upgrade of course

EVRider | 2 gennaio 2019

If Tesla hadn't agreed to sell me FSD for $3,000, I would have waited until FSD had something to offer (besides the computer upgrade) before buying it for $5,000. The only risk of waiting, if you can't get the pre-delivery price, is that the cost of FSD could increase again, especially once the new computer is in production, but nobody knows if that's going to happen (the cost could decrease too).

rdavis | 2 gennaio 2019

FSD = Kick-starter campaign....

I'll leave my $5k working for me growing in the market... I don't see FSD being approved by all the different state regulations any time soon. I'll be in the market for a new car by then.

That $5k in the market over 10 years will historically double, so I'll have $ 10k to put forward toward FSD by the time it starts rolling out in mass...

terminator9 | 2 gennaio 2019

No, got to see it to believe it.

thedrisin | 2 gennaio 2019


"You would also get any other hardware upgrades that emerge as FSD develops.."

Do you have a link where this is actually stated in writing? I thought only commitment was to chip update.

bruryan | 2 gennaio 2019

Could you post the individual you spoke with to get the reduced price? Or the particular office?

Frank99 | 2 gennaio 2019

What's the value of FSD?

In my opinion, a true SAE Level 4 option is worth at least $10K, and level 5 at least $20K. Think of what you get out of that - the equivalent of a private driver available to you anytime. Level 4 is less valuable because you still need to be licensed and capable of driving to utilize it - where Level 5 would be a godsend to everyone with a revoked license - including the elderly who are no longer safe to drive themselves. It's not just a nice driver assist like EAP - it's a complete and total reshaping of transportation.

I fully expect Tesla to price FSD based on its value. Frankly, EAP is way overpriced for what it currently consists of - but $5K for EAP plus $5K for FSD gives a Level 4 cost of $10K.

weluvm3 | 2 gennaio 2019

As long as I don't have any body damage and my car is mechanically sound, I don't see why I would need to trade it in. The performance is plenty good and everything is as comfy as it needs to be. Tesla is planning to upgrade the CPU and maybe they will offer display upgrades eventually, too.

As for the battery pack: yes, it will eventually wear out. But...replacing it will certainly be cheaper in 10 years than it cost Tesla today. I wouldn't expect that replacing the entire car would be more cost effective than or sensible than replacing just the battery pack, so long as the rest of the car was in good enough shape.

Therefore, I think the $3,000 that I spent on FSD was a good bet, as long as Tesla upholds their end of the deal and actually delivers on FSD. If they don't...well, either they eventually will, or there won't be a Tesla around to sue for non-performance anyway.

TeslaMarque | 2 gennaio 2019


I agree that you will be entitled to the upgraded chip, but I was referring to any current benefits or features, of which, and again please correct me if I’m wrong, but there are none currently. IF the upgraded chip adds real benefits to the car, it may or may not be worth it to upgrade now, but that’s a risk I’m not willing to take.


Completely agree with you, if this actually works well and is safe, it will be well worth the price!

thedrisin | 2 gennaio 2019

@Frank99. Level 4 is a long way off, and by that time most cars on the road will be level 4 compatible also. It won't be $10k, but standard equipment. That will be necessary for high level autonomous driving to work.

RES IPSA | 2 gennaio 2019

I guess some people plan on keeping their current Model 3 for 10 plus years. In the next 7 -10 years, Level 4 autonomous driving should be available. By then, EV's will have have 600 plus miles of range standard.

In 2024, I plan on buying my new Model 3 with a 150 kw battery pack for 40k. I might consider FSD then...

4barkie | 2 gennaio 2019

When I ordered my 3 the price was 3k, 4k if you added it later. I assumed that they would honor that 4k price as it did not stipulate a timeframe when the 4k would expire. Did I just shoot myself in the foot? I thought I would buy it as a retirement present to myself in 16 months for putting up with the job from hell!

RES IPSA | 2 gennaio 2019

4barkie... Take a nice vacation with your 4k... buy an autonomous vehicle when they are available for purchase. Just my unsolicited advice

TAC | 3 gennaio 2019

None of us have the crystal ball to predict when it will be fully live. I do believe though early adoptors will get half of the FSD pie before its 100% and or a beta participation program. Sounds like employee beta will begin this year.

jimglas | 3 gennaio 2019

I purchased FSD so that I would get the hardware upgrade EM said would be out this year

TAC | 3 gennaio 2019


thedrisin | 3 gennaio 2019

@TAC. As with any of the beta features, the manual will be loaded with warnings, that you need to be ready to take control immediately and if something goes wrong everyone will say "RTFM." FSD will be FSD when you no longer have to have control.

I wish Tesla would stop using the term "FSD" and use accepted SAE level definitions so everyone can be on the same page in this discussion.

rdavis | 3 gennaio 2019

jimglas | January 3, 2019
I purchased FSD so that I would get the hardware upgrade EM said would be out this year


Hardware upgrade is a new pop in CPU. BTW, that chip won't do a damn thing for you unless they start to offer some FSD features... which I really don't see happening soon (Which is why FSD was moved to "off menu").

TAC | 3 gennaio 2019

Cool cant wait! Beta, RTFM’ing and ready to take over control if / when needed.

Tesla-David | 3 gennaio 2019

I. purchased FSD when we configured our M3. I have full confidence and patience in EM and Tesla to get it done.

EVRider | 3 gennaio 2019

@bruryan: I submitted my question about buying FSD for $3,000 using the support form on my Model S page on My Tesla. I selected the option to escalate for executive review. I don’t know who actually processed the request, but I eventually heard from a sales person at my local service center (someone I’ve worked with before) who told me my request had been approved and she made the arrangements.

I’m told that the update was pushed to my car (It wasn’t part of a regular firmware update), but I have no way to actually verify that, other than the option to buy FSD for $5,000 is no longer showing on My Tesla.

nwondka | 3 gennaio 2019

I bought FSD for 3K at initial purchase. My rationale (beyond boys with toys) was I didn't think they could make it happen with the existing hardware, and if I waited it would cost more. Sounds like I was at least partially correct, with the news of the new computer. I figured it would take a while, but I am hoping to keep the car a long time, and within 5 years or so batteries will come down in price, with new battery it's basically a new car. Benefit of getting the FSD that I didn't expect are the periodic enhancements as they come out, like the recent navigate by autopilot and summon features.

thedrisin | 3 gennaio 2019

@nwondka. The enhancements you mentioned are for anyone with EAP. There are no unique FSD features.

EVRider | 3 gennaio 2019

FWIW, I didn’t buy FSD because I think I’ll be getting true FSD anytime soon, but I do expect to see EAP improvements that are only available with FSD in the next 6 months or so.

2015P90DI | 3 gennaio 2019

I gave serious consideration to FSD, but ultimately decided against it.

Originally, when it was first offered, Elon made is sound as though we were only a couple of years away (Late 2016).

The fact that nothing has been released towards FSD in over two years justifies my decision alone. I only keep cars for 2-3 years anyway.

Next, after experiencing Nav on Auto Pilot, I now see how far away we are from FSD being practical. They might get a car do be able to do it, but, based on Nav on AP, it's a long way from being an actual driver replacement. That's just the technology and capability of the car.

Next, it's going to be a long time before they get regulatory approval.

Many think that Tesla removed the FSD option because something is coming very soon and Tesla wants to charge more for it. I think it's the opposite. They realized how far away they are and it will be bad press to continue to sell something that doesn't exist and won't be able to deliver it for many years to come.

If I'm wrong, then I guess it costs me $2,000 for waiting. But, we're on our 7th car with AP2. We paid for it on one of the company cars, saved $18,000 by not getting it on the rest of them. 3 of those are already sold and gone. So I'm at least $9,000 ahead. If I decide to add it to the other two cars, it only costs me $6,000 extra and I'm still ahead.

But, feeling pretty confident it won't be out before we sell off the cars we have and replace them with new ones.

Plus, I think the price will actually decrease once it comes out. Right now, to add it after the fact, if you didn't get EAP, it's a whopping $12,000. Most people buying a $35,000 car are not going to fork out $12,000 for a software update. They can't afford it. If Tesla wants to sell the feature, which we all know they do, the price WILL come down to make it accessible to more people. Car prices just dropped by $2,000. They'll drop even more in the next year or two.

thedrisin | 3 gennaio 2019

@EVRider. FSD then is enhanced EAP? Where does EAP end and FSD start? I think we deserve that Tesla define FSD in terms of accepted levels so that we actually know what we are purchasing for $5k. Right now it seems FSD means something different to everyone.

EVRider | 4 gennaio 2019

@thedrisin: I expect to see incremental FSD features that let FSD cars do more than cars without FSD. I don’t think anyone outside of Tesla knows which of those incremental improvements will be part of FSD vs EAP, since they don’t exist yet, but once we start seeing those features it will become more apparent.

howard | 4 gennaio 2019

If FSD hardware upgrades improved EAP then I might see a small benefit. I don't use EAP now because to me it is just not stable/safe enough. As a number have stated FSD is a long way off and I think what I am expecting as FSD (at least level 4) is going to not be available on current existing cars. Hence I trade it in, in 3 to 4 years when it is has been approved by the government(s) regulators to actually be used.

EVRider | 4 gennaio 2019

@howard: AP has been available for 3 years now and plenty of us use it without issues. It's not perfect, so you have to be ready to intervene, but it works extremely well on the highway (which is the only place I use it). I don't know how much better it would need to be before you'll use it, but I'm guessing you won't ever feel comfortable using it if you won't use it now. AP has been wonderful on longer trips -- you don't know what you're missing. :-) | 18 marzo 2019

Got Autopilot first and having used it for a couple of days, I was convinced that even the presently available features of FSD for 3k more are well worth it. Got it today, waiting for the update.

jjt2122 | 18 marzo 2019

Yea I got FSD for $2K, totally worth it!! I can’t wait for what the future holds for FSD