Some people are using Tesla’s new autopilot technology for fun, like driving across the country in record time. Others, though, are finding that the new feature helps avoid dangerous crashes.
Jon Hall, a Seattleite and owner of a Tesla Model S P85D, posted a dash cam videoWednesday on YouTube that shows how he avoided a collision thanks to the auto-pilot.
Hall was driving on State Route 99 just north of downtown Seattle when an oncoming car attempted to make a left turn directly in front of him.
“It’s easy to say that in hindsight, I should be going slower, but traffic tends not to pull out from you in that direction,” Hall wrote. “I was actually watching cars to the right of me, which is the entire reason the car reacted and I didn’t. All the fault is in the other driver, and the video clearly shows this.”
Hall said he had his autopilot set to follow cars at the “maximum distance.”
“I wasn’t even able to honk the horn before the car came to a stop,” he wrote. “The autopilot saved my butt!”
In the YouTube video description, Hall wrote that “I did not touch the brake. Car did all the work. Sadly no audio, because I had an Uber passenger and Washington has strict privacy laws about recording conversations.”
Tesla rolled out the autopilot feature to Model S owners earlier this month. Tesla CEO Elon Musk noted that “we want people to be quite careful with the autopilot,” adding that drivers should keep their “hands on the wheel” while using the feature, Popular Mechanics noted.