Skip to main content

Navigate on Autopilot feature makes Tesla vehicles more autonomous than ever

Tesla recently announced the US rollout of Navigate on Autopilot: a feature providing vehicles with the ability to autonomously merge, change lanes, take exits, and even navigate highway interchanges with driver approval.


Last week, Tesla released the first version of Navigate on Autopilot, "an active guidance feature for Enhanced Autopilot that, with driver supervision, guides a car from a highway's on-ramp to off-ramp, including suggesting and making land changes, navigating highway interchanges, and taking exits."

Though capable of driving cars autonomously, the feature requires action approval by the driver using the turn stalk. Once driverless vehicles have been approved by regulators, future versions of the feature will have the option of deactivating this precaution.

This AI decision confirmation ensures that the driver is still alert while the car navigates through traffic. If working responsively with Navigate, drivers will arrive at their destination via the most efficient route, thanks to vehicle-mandated suggestions that are designed to take into account and analyze information from eight external cameras, combined with ultrasonic and radar sensors. It's like having a dozen sets of eyes on the road rather than just one.

To give your Tesla this supervised control, Navigate on Autopilot and Autosteer must be turned on from the Autopilot settings.

Once this is enabled, the vehicle will suggest lane changes to either keep you in the best lane to reach your destination, or to pass other cars to keep the vehicle at your set speed. The latter option comes with four settings -- disabled, mild, average, or 'Mad Max' -- which the feature will switch between based on the pace of surrounding traffic.

As vehicles face more and more road situations, the information from all experiences will be fed to Tesla's neural net that consists of "advanced machine learning algorithms [that] allow our cars to collect and process data in milliseconds." In short, Tesla's algorithms are always learning, always analyzing, and always getting closer to being fully autonomous.

The rollout of Navigate on Autopilot begins this week in the US to those who have Enhanced Autopilot or Full Self-Driving Capability. As various markets' regulatory bodies approve the technology, the rollout will expand internationally.