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FSD/ Robotaxis and UNECE Regulations

Mm2021

Member
Feb 7, 2021
51
15
London
Forgive me for my ignorance in this area but I was curious if anyone knew- does Brexit mean we will no longer be held to the archaic car regulatory policies of the EU that substantially delay the timeline to receiving FSD here? (I mean the FSD that is being beta tested in the USA at the moment by members of the public- autonomous driving on city streets etc)

Just so frustrating that the regulations we are bound to seem so strict that we may be amongst the last in the world to receive a truly gaming changing technological advancement in the months or years to come.
 

VanillaAir_UK

Supporting Member
Jun 17, 2019
7,147
4,669
Surrey, UK
The Economic Commission for Europe of the United Nations regulations, known as UN/ECE are largely a worldwide set of regulations which any country can sign up to or reject - nothing really specific to the EU. The USA fall under the UN/ECE umbrella, but do not sign up to the regulation 79 (UN/ECE r79) that affects assisted and autonomous driving.

On leaving the European Union, we adopted all European Laws as ours - effectively a cut and paste. But we do now have the option of removing/adjusting them as we see fit which includes the ability to opt out of r79.
 
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Envchem

Member
Nov 13, 2019
129
129
Liverpool, UK
Vanilla is spot on with his assessment. From my point of view regulations is the least of my worries regarding the implementation of FSD as it is on the beta version right now. From what I have seen so far there is no way this system can cope with UK traffic as it is now.
I believe we will see a more gradual approach over this side of the pond. Some features will get slowly released over the next couple of months maybe.
Don't get me wrong; I love the idea behind it and I have already bought FSD. But I cant see it getting fully implemented in the UK. Maybe on motorways, A roads and simple roundabouts/traffic lights. But city driving will be a massacre.
 

JupiterMan

Member
Aug 7, 2019
421
364
Hertfordshire, UK
Countries are free to adopt their own rules, which manufacturers can adopt instead of or in addition to UNECE rules. This allows multinationals to just adopt UNECE for all major (non US) markets, or tailor there offering based on local legislation.

This is not dependent upon EU membership. As I understand it Norway (single market member) have already done this (no coincidence Norway flagged as first European country to get FSD Beta by Elon), Germany and UK are currently going through process of this as well.

There could be new rules in UK at end of this year which allow much of FSD to operate here - there are consultations ongoing at the moment
 
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JupiterMan

Member
Aug 7, 2019
421
364
Hertfordshire, UK
From what I have seen so far there is no way this system can cope with UK traffic as it is now.
I believe we will see a more gradual approach over this side of the pond. Some features will get slowly released over the next couple of months maybe.

The main complication I can see in the UK compared to the USA is mini roundabouts, and yielding rules for those.... that will be interesting to see..... but once that is mastered, then it should be able to do multiple roundabouts too - such as "the magic roundabout", as it will see each roundabout in series simply as a sequence of independent tasks.

Other than that , having seen lots of FSD beta clips on youtube, I'm not sure other that UK roads are any more problematic than anywhere else to be honest.
 
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Billbrown1982

TM3 LR 2021 | Red | FSD
Dec 21, 2020
239
95
Basildon

Durzel

Active Member
Jul 17, 2019
2,799
1,821
Bath, UK
The wheels of Government move so slowly though.

I would've thought there would already be noise about the UK exempting itself from r79, like the US and Norway, if it was going to happen in any meaningful timeframe.
 

phil4

Member
Sep 8, 2020
285
158
UK
There's clearly two parts to FSD happening in the UK. The first is obviously regulation, I can't see us rushing to fully autonomous cars everywhere for a decade or more. Sure, low speed, motorway only, maybe this year, maybe next. But get in your car and have it take you anywhere... that'll be a lot lot longer coming.

But then there's the tech too. It's in beta because it's buggy, and doesn't work all the time. That'll change over time, but equally I fully expect cars to need changing too. In the UK for example the door pillar cameras get blinded by low sun most mornings and evenings for 4-6 months of the year. That isn't something software can fix.

So given that it's very likely govt/legal changes needed for FSD will put some of the responsibility on the manufacturer, I can see if very likely Tesla will block FSD when sensors aren't working, and so in the UK for a good chunk of the year, current hardware won't be allowed to use FSD.

Much as Elon makes a big thing of all current cars having the required hardware... I'm not sure that'll be true, or even matter much by the time the Government and Software have caught up.
 
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Billbrown1982

TM3 LR 2021 | Red | FSD
Dec 21, 2020
239
95
Basildon
There's clearly two parts to FSD happening in the UK. The first is obviously regulation, I can't see us rushing to fully autonomous cars everywhere for a decade or more. Sure, low speed, motorway only, maybe this year, maybe next. But get in your car and have it take you anywhere... that'll be a lot lot longer coming.

But then there's the tech too. It's in beta because it's buggy, and doesn't work all the time. That'll change over time, but equally I fully expect cars to need changing too. In the UK for example the door pillar cameras get blinded by low sun most mornings and evenings for 4-6 months of the year. That isn't something software can fix.

So given that it's very likely govt/legal changes needed for FSD will put some of the responsibility on the manufacturer, I can see if very likely Tesla will block FSD when sensors aren't working, and so in the UK for a good chunk of the year, current hardware won't be allowed to use FSD.

Much as Elon makes a big thing of all current cars having the required hardware... I'm not sure that'll be true, or even matter much by the time the Government and Software have caught up.

I've been wondering for a while though, could that not just be fixed by a polarised lens over the cameras or something to that degree?

Equally, some of the trucks at work don't have mirrors at all now and its all done by cameras, with screens inside the cab. These don't seem to be affected by the sun dazzling them...so whats the difference I wonder.
 

nightowl

Member
Sep 2, 2019
329
227
Berkshire
The main complication I can see in the UK compared to the USA is mini roundabouts, and yielding rules for those.... that will be interesting to see..... but once that is mastered, then it should be able to do multiple roundabouts too - such as "the magic roundabout", as it will see each roundabout in series simply as a sequence of independent tasks.

Other than that , having seen lots of FSD beta clips on youtube, I'm not sure other that UK roads are any more problematic than anywhere else to be honest.

Ah, the classic mini-roundabout standoff. It'll be OK during beta I reckon, as the Tesla will likely be overly-cautious and give way to everyone else, or the driver will override it if it's taking too long. The real fun will come when, several years down the line, three robotaxis (with no controls) meet at the same mini roundabout and get stuck :D

Looking forward to seeing a YouTube video of a Tesla successfully navigating the magic roundabout itself when it becomes possible!

I remember reading that the UK was wanting to be one of the pioneers with regard to self-driving car regulations being changed, and then Germany came along and just got it done. Really looking forward to something actually getting done beyond consultations.

The UNECE regulations seem a bit backwards in places. For example, apparently the car may only steer up to a maximum angle automatically, after which it wants you to take over. Seen a few videos of people testing autopilot on UK roads. It seems dangerous to impose this limitation.

I'll be happy in the short-term if we don't have to keep holding the steering wheel whilst on using autosteer or having to nudge it with NoA, and if summon could work further away.
 
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Neilman

Member
Mar 27, 2020
236
136
Southampton, UK
Ah, the classic mini-roundabout standoff. It'll be OK during beta I reckon, as the Tesla will likely be overly-cautious and give way to everyone else, or the driver will override it if it's taking too long. The real fun will come when, several years down the line, three robotaxis (with no controls) meet at the same mini roundabout and get stuck :D

Looking forward to seeing a YouTube video of a Tesla successfully navigating the magic roundabout itself when it becomes possible!

I remember reading that the UK was wanting to be one of the pioneers with regard to self-driving car regulations being changed, and then Germany came along and just got it done. Really looking forward to something actually getting done beyond consultations.

The UNECE regulations seem a bit backwards in places. For example, apparently the car may only steer up to a maximum angle automatically, after which it wants you to take over. Seen a few videos of people testing autopilot on UK roads. It seems dangerous to impose this limitation.

I'll be happy in the short-term if we don't have to keep holding the steering wheel whilst on using autosteer or having to nudge it with NoA, and if summon could work further away.

Yeah, every .. 15 .. seconds, having to give a sufficient nudge on auto drive.
Not enough and it flashes the screen and barks at you.
A bit too much and it simply drops control over to you without warning that it has let go.

Long time ago apparently it was sufficient to fiddle with the wheel buttons but now you actually have to nudge the wheel itself.
 

JupiterMan

Member
Aug 7, 2019
421
364
Hertfordshire, UK
The real fun will come when, several years down the line, three robotaxis (with no controls) meet at the same mini roundabout and get stuck :D

Robotaxis will follow driving patterns, so should be predictable.... there will also be car to car communication protocols which are being worked on, which would allow robotaxis to know the others intended path/actions, so this should be easily done.

The main issue I think is actually human drivers, who have random abilities and behaviours.... especially those that see a self driving car and could try to tease it/confuse it deliberately. The more robotaxis/self driving cars on the road, the more safe and efficient the road system will become.

There's clearly two parts to FSD happening in the UK. The first is obviously regulation, I can't see us rushing to fully autonomous cars everywhere for a decade or more.

The Law commission is consulting on new rules and legislation right now, which will optionally be available instead of UNECE regs in the UK. They will be reporting their findings in only 7 to 10 months time. This is going to happen sooner than you think.

Automated Vehicles | Law Commission
 

Durzel

Active Member
Jul 17, 2019
2,799
1,821
Bath, UK
So ~10 months for the consultation, and however much longer after that for something to actually follow from it? That doesn't sound like "sooner than you think" to me, to be honest :( It would suggest to me we're not going to see FSD beta in the UK this year.
 

Tony Hoyle

Member
May 7, 2019
913
546
Stockport, UK
The UNECE regulations seem a bit backwards in places. For example, apparently the car may only steer up to a maximum angle automatically, after which it wants you to take over. Seen a few videos of people testing autopilot on UK roads. It seems dangerous to impose this limitation.

That's a myth alas perpetuated by Tesla because that's what their implementation does.

The limits are about lateral force around a corner ie. you're not allowed to do sharp corners at 70 and pin your passengers to the doors..

The correct solution is to slow down and take the corner a bit slower. AP lacks the ability to do this so it simply aborts.

The latest drafts actually say you must *not* abort a manoeuvre if you find yourself outside the limits during it as this could be dangerous.
 
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JupiterMan

Member
Aug 7, 2019
421
364
Hertfordshire, UK
So ~10 months for the consultation, and however much longer after that for something to actually follow from it? That doesn't sound like "sooner than you think" to me, to be honest :( It would suggest to me we're not going to see FSD beta in the UK this year.

Agree it wont be this year, but 2022 seems a reasonable bet for UK specific legislation and certainly not a decade wait. In the meantime there could be some UNECE improvements that help things a long a tiny bit.
 

Mm2021

Member
Feb 7, 2021
51
15
London
Thanks for all your thoughts everyone! I’m stunned by how much knowledge you have in this area. Really eye opening.

The new firmware for FSD in the States is out and although (so far) it’s night time driving in relatively well lit streets, it’s looking pretty good. This is not even version 9 which Musk anticipates is coming out to even more beta testers next month in the States. When he promised exponential improvement, maybe he wasn’t lying?

Keep an eye out for day time driving videos of the new firmware. Tesla suggest only minor improvements have been made on this firmware but the first tests indicate a definite improvement across multiple areas!

 

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