With the facelifted Tesla Model 3 (Highland) and Model Y now open for order in Malaysia, one key decision for potential buyers is choosing among Tesla's advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) - Autopilot, Enhanced Autopilot, and Full Self-Driving (FSD).
Autopilot comes as a standard feature on both Tesla models, while Enhanced Autopilot and Full Self-Driving (FSD) are available as optional add-ons, priced at RM 16,000 and RM 32,000, respectively.
In this article, we'll delve into these choices and help you in determining whether these tech upgrades are worth opting.
Also read: Ahead of USA, Tesla Model 3 Highland bookings open in Malaysia; from RM 189k, up to 629 km range, deliveries starting late 2023
The base Autopilot package is included for both Tesla models. It offers features such as adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assistance, much like the systems from other manufacturers.
Autopilot can autonomously steer within a lane and maintain a preset speed. It requires ongoing driver supervision, with hands on the wheel and ready to take control if necessary.
Enhanced Autopilot includes all Autopilot features but introduced enhancements like Navigate on Autopilot and Auto Lane Change, allowing the car to handle highway interchanges and perform automatic lane changes.
It also has features like Summon and Smart Summon, enabling the car to park remotely and navigate parking lots autonomously. Like Autopilot, Enhanced Autopilot emphasises the importance of the driver's responsibility and attention.
Full Self-Driving (FSD)
FSD includes all Autopilot and Enhanced Autopilot features but adds capabilities Autosteer on City Streets and Traffic and Stop Sign Control, allowing it to recognize traffic lights and stop signs, and navigate city streets.
It can steer, speed up, slow down, change lanes, and navigate junctions without the driver’s input. However, Tesla says the driver is still required to pay attention and be ready to take over if something unexpected happens, like a sudden problem on the road.
SAE levels of automation
It's important to understand that even though there are three tiers, they all fall under Level 2 on the SAE's scale of autonomous driving capabilities as driver supervision is required while using these systems.
This classification is based on how little the system relies on driver supervision rather than the number of driving tasks it can perform.
Unless a system is legally certified as completely reliable without the need for driver intervention (which even Tesla's FSD has not yet achieved), it will continue to be classified as Level 2.
Which system should I go for?
Now, it’s worth noting that you don't have to decide about Enhanced Autopilot or FSD when you order your Tesla. You have the flexibility to buy these options at any time using the Tesla app.
The key distinction here is that if you're financing the car with a hire purchase loan, the cost of these options will be included in your monthly payment, instead of having to pay a large sum later.
Also, at time of publishing, FSD is yet to be available in Malaysia. So, if you choose this option when ordering, you're essentially paying RM 32,000 in anticipation of its availability in the future and to unlock the feature once it is.
In our opinion, we'd recommend sticking with the standard Autopilot and allocating the funds for other options, such as the long-range AWD. The lane change feature can be useful for extended highway trips, while the remaining features seem to be more for show. We've tested the basic Autopilot and found that it performed admirably on the highway.
Also read: Review: Officially imported Tesla Model Y RWD in Malaysia, shaking up the RM 200k segment
However, if budget constraints aren't a concern for you, and you prefer to go all-in with your Tesla, then certainly go ahead. Ultimately, it's your money, and the choice is yours.
Also read: Tesla Model 3's FSD drives into flood, driver blames the car and wants to sue