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Kicked out of the FSD Beta! (Long Post)

Hi everyone, apologies for the long post, but I feel like my M3 investment deserves this airing! I’m not a super-frequent visitor here, but have read many threads over the 2.5 years I’ve had my beloved Dual Motor Model 3. I’m posting today to explain how I was unceremoniously booted from the FSD beta program last week. But before I get into that, a little background.

First and foremost: I love my M3. It has changed my life. I previously had a Subaru Forrester. I’m a consultant and drive about 1-2 hours per day, going to various client sites. For a couple years leading up to the M3 purchase, my body, and particularly my back, would be *hurting* after longer drives in the Forrester. I was honestly asking myself how I was going to keep going with my career, with the aches and pains that driving was causing me. Then I looked into a Model 3. And the rest is history.

I use autopilot 90% of the time I’m in the car. Always paying attention, of course, but able to rest my body. No feet pressing the pedals. No hands clutching the wheel. It’s astounding what a toll that takes on the (50-year-old) body, day in and day out. I can drive 2 hours in the M3 and not feel like I was in the car at all. That's life changing!

Now, first of all, I’m no Elon/Tesla complainer/hater. I love the car so much, tech warts and all. Auto-wipers suck—don’t care. Road noise is significant—don’t care. Unresolved trim issues at purchase—don’t care. The car is just amazing. Best purchase I have ever made, without question. Second: I pay attention when I drive, and know how the Model 3 works. I have logged about 45,000 miles on autopilot. I know how to pay attention, and I know when and how to prove that to the M3.

Now for the sad part. The FSD beta was simply yanked from my car last week, with no email notice, and little to no in-car warning. If something was presented on the screen, it was small, looked like any other message, and, ironically, it must have been showing when I was driving and paying attention to the road!

I got the FSD beta a few weeks ago after a painstaking 30 days of getting a 99 safety score, despite driving in really difficult areas of Boston and the suburbs. All sorts of people hard breaking in front of me, cutting me off, etc. But I was careful, as I always am, and maintained a 99 for a month which was no small feat. I got the FSD beta and was really psyched. Unlike some of you, I didn’t read a ton about it ahead of time. No time for that with 3 younger kids and a demanding job, all seriously affected by the pandemic. So I didn’t fully understand many things about FSD except for the fact that 1) I paid many thousands of dollars for it. 2) I’ve waited two and a half years for it. And 3) it doesn’t work very well so you have to be very careful.

I used FSD the day it downloaded and was struck by how bad it was on city streets. I was really surprised. It was exciting to see it trying to do things it couldn't do before, but I stopped using it. I pretty much only double-tap the gear stalk on major roads, and after that first bad experience, didn’t try it again for a week or so on city streets. The next time I tried it, in hindsight, I noticed extensive nags about paying attention. I was confused because I *was* paying attention. But I guess I did change audio sources, change A/C temps., etc. This is par for the course with standard AP and I never had an issue.

Then last week, I was on a back road. No one around me. I was changing the radio stations during a morning commute and then I had to change my navigation destination. I simply clicked on navigation and switched destinations to one of my preset favorites. AP freaked out and disengaged. And then I saw the message. I was booted from the beta.

Kicked-Out.jpeg


Then ensued tons of reading. I discovered that I was doing it wrong. I should have turned off FSD during my normal commutes and ONLY used it when I wanted to “test” it and pay 100% full attention to the road without even changing the radio station. But I didn’t know. And now after 2.5 years, thousands of dollars, 45,000 miles of safe AP driving, and 30 days of excruciatingly safe Safety-Score driving, I’ve lost what I only had for a few drives, and may never get it back. Man, that SUCKS!

Now a couple of questions for those of you more in the know than me.

1) Does anyone know if I will get FSD beta access back? When?
2) If I email Tesla and officially back out of the beta, will I get my old less-nagging AP back?
3) Can I then re-apply for the beta and go through another safety score test and get FSD back?

So frustrating not knowing the answers to these questions. Of course I called Tesla and the guy on the phone was useless. I do have service scheduled next week and will ask, but I’m pretty sure they won’t know anything either.

For those of you with FSD beta access right now, be careful, and learn from my mistakes!
 

EVNow

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At this juncture we have to be united, and being united means we all need to set our expectations based on how Tesla had advertised FSD from the very beginning. We both know it was advertised as an autonomous system, and this what we ALL should expect. We shouldn't play silly games with who is included in our group, and who isn't included.
I don’t agree.

Makes absolute sense to separate, since they were promised different things.

It also limits Tesla refunds that makes it more likely.
 
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Knightshade

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Years from now when people are arguing over whether Tesla delivered what was owed to them I could understand rationality in this kind of argument. I would still disagree with you, but I could understand the argument to determine reimbursement if any.

But, why have that argument now?

I'm not having an argument.

I'm clearly stating facts, and sourcing them.

For some reason others wish to argue about it despite the facts saying exactly what I've laid out, one can only speculate as to why.




At this juncture we have to be united, and being united means we all need to set our expectations based on how Tesla had advertised FSD from the very beginning.

Given that has changed, this doesn't make much sense.

I'm not talking about Elons aspirational tweets- I'm talking about what people actually purchased.

Pre and post 3/19, those are different things.

There is no "from the beginning and the same today" at all in what Tesla, the company, promised to purchasers of what are clearly two different products. And it helps nobody to wrongly claim there is, and only leads us back to people being "confused" about the whole thing.


It's not confusing, it's quite clear, in writing, during the purchase.



We both know it was advertised as an autonomous system,

Given Tesla engages in no paid advertising I find this claim....odd.

And given Tesla tells you in writing during your purchase that the post 3/19 product is not an autonomous system it's even more odd you keep wrongly claiming this.




The other point I'll bring up consumers don't always need to have a legal basis in which to argue for something they feel they are owed.

I mean, they do if they want to enforce what they are owed legally.


Let me ask you a better question though.


What reason would Tesla have had to remove all wording relating to promising more than L2 in the FSD product description in 3/19 other than limiting their legal liability if they found themselves unable to deliver more than L2?




For example last week Rivian raised the pricing of their vehicles for new buyers, and people with reservations. This understandably upset a lot of reservations holders as the price hikes were super steep. On various forums I commented that the price wasn't locked in for reservations holders, and there wasn't any merit in the argument that we were owed the old pricing.

Most reservation holders felt like they were owed something, and tons of reservations were being canceled.

The next day Rivian reversed course, and promised reservation holders the old price. Now the investors are stuck with footing the bill for more expensive components due to inflation. But, its a good example of how united customers can push a company to give what they feel they're owed.


That entire debacle was pretty strange on many levels. None of them terribly relevant to Tesla and best discussed in the Rivian specific threads, but here's how it appeared to me:


Rivian initially announced high prices.

Tesla announced the cybertruck with better specs and MUCH lower prices.

Rivian then announced lower prices.

They stuck with them, even touted them, through the IPO-- despite knowing they were not sustainable prices and would jack them up soon after the IPO (arguably this is securities fraud).

Then then raised prices as they knew they must.

Folks got super mad, they got tons of bad press.

They announced they'd honor the low prices, that they can't afford to honor, for all reservation holders even those who had already cancelled.... despite the fact their production ramp suggests it'll take years just to get through backlog orders. Meaning they'd be on the hook selling money-losing trucks and literally nothing else, for years to come.

They've seen their market cap plummet over 67% since their highs, and given the above, especially the last bit, they still seem crazy overpriced of a company with no obvious path forward.



So like I said, weird.... but not especially comparable to Tesla, which has so much cash on hand and net positive cash flow they could fully refund everyone they'd legally owe anything to (the pre 3/19 buyers) if they never get past L2 with the corporate equivalent of change they find in their couch cushions.
 
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EVNow

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Just for fun … here is how complicated the price decrease in Mar-2019 was.

Interesting to see that the AP + FSD at that time was normally $4k + $7k = $11k.


F737E707-3EA4-4D46-84DD-4E1929C4A174.jpeg
 

S4WRXTTCS

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May 3, 2015
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Snohomish, WA
I don’t agree.

Makes absolute sense to separate, since they were promised different things.

It also limits Tesla refunds that makes it more likely.

They were promised different things if one goes solely by the order page itself.

But, people don't buy a product based on an order page itself. They look at other pages on the website, and they look at what Musk is tweeting.

Essentially it comes down to how a product is advertised, and I think we can both agree that FSD was advertised as a system capable of autonomous driving.

If this was the end of FSD and were arguing about refunds then I would agree with having this argument. I just don't see any purpose in splitting people into groups at this juncture.
 

S4WRXTTCS

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May 3, 2015
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That entire debacle was pretty strange on many levels. None of them terribly relevant to Tesla and best discussed in the Rivian specific threads, but here's how it appeared to me:

It is relevant in terms of customer expectation.

That customers have the power unless they're a bunch of stock owners who care more about protecting the company than the customers.
 

Knightshade

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Jul 31, 2017
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They were promised different things if one goes solely by the order page itself.

But, people don't buy a product based on an order page itself.

They look at other pages on the website, and they look at what Musk is tweeting.


Legally, the order page is the only one you can be sure they did look at (or at least the only one you can be sure they were shown).




Essentially it comes down to how a product is advertised, and I think we can both agree that FSD was advertised as a system capable of autonomous driving.

I don't think we can- since it wasn't.

Pre 3/19 it was sold as one that in the future would be

Post 3/19 it was sold as explicitly not autonomous


Again this isn't confusing. It's clearly stated on the very page where you buy the thing.
 

S4WRXTTCS

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May 3, 2015
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Post 3/19 it was sold as explicitly not autonomous
Then why does the post 3/19 page still show the video of what is clearly autonomous driving?

Why does the disclaimer still show "The currently enabled features require active driver supervision and do not make the vehicle autonomous. The activation and use of these features are dependent on achieving reliability far in excess of human drivers as demonstrated by billions of miles of experience, as well as regulatory approval, which may take longer in some jurisdictions. As these self-driving features evolve, your car will be continuously upgraded through over-the-air software updates."

I don't disagree that Tesla revamped the page to reduce their legal exposure in terms of a settlement. To better position themselves from a legal protection stand point if/when any legal settlement happens.

But, I highly disagree when it comes to customer expectation.

You can't dismiss what Elon says on Twitter as he's a spokesperson for the company. That he is part of the advertisement. Tesla uses social media as advertisement. Just like you can't dismiss what Tesla shows on the other pages.
 

Knightshade

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Then why does the post 3/19 page still show the video of what is clearly autonomous driving?

That video is L3 BTW.... so when they say the driver is there for legal reasons they aren't kidding.

But that video isn't what they're selling today. It's something they HOPE to be able to give people some day. Aspirational if you will.

You can tell by reading the description on the purchase page of what they are actually selling today





Why does the disclaimer still show "The currently enabled features require active driver supervision and do not make the vehicle autonomous.

Because the prodict they're selling do not make the vehicle autonomous

That's why it's so weird people keep acting unsure or confused about what is being sold.

Tesla is clearly telling you right there


The activation and use of these features are dependent on achieving reliability far in excess of human drivers as demonstrated by billions of miles of experience, as well as regulatory approval, which may take longer in some jurisdictions. As these self-driving features evolve, your car will be continuously upgraded through over-the-air software updates."

"these features" are the ones listed on the page (no other features are mentioned at all, so they have to be).

None of those are autonomous.

Some are not available in some jurisdictions (or restricted at least) right now. Several of them are significantly cripled in the EU right now due to regulators for example. So they're making clear you may not have full use of all "these features" listed--- which again do not make the vehicle autonomous per the very first sentence....until regulators allow it. And that you will receive some upgrades to these features in the future.... (for example the system did not used to read speed limit signs--- now it does... but that ALSO didn't change the fact none of these features make the car autonomous





You can't dismiss what Elon says on Twitter

Sure I can.

He's said lots of stuff that never happened.

And other than one, directly regarding potentially material investor information (private at 420 tweet) there's been no legal consequence whatsoever to his suggesting there might be stuff in the future that doesn't show up.


What was I promised, in writing, as part of the sale? THAT you can't dismiss.

The twitter musings of a brilliant eternal optimists hopes for the future- that are just statements he makes, rather than part of any legal contract between 2 parties? Those I can dismiss somewhat more easily.
 

S4WRXTTCS

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May 3, 2015
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But that video isn't what they're selling today. It's something they HOPE to be able to give people some day. Aspirational if you will.

You can tell by reading the description on the purchase page of what they are actually selling today

Do you agree that there is ambiguity in the way the video is presented, and the disclaimer on the purchase page?

How is a new customer supposed to know its aspirational?

The biggest problem with the way FSD has been sold from the very beginning is Tesla sold an aspirational product without conveying to customers that it was aspirational.

Instead of fixing that problem in 3/2019 they opted to go the other route where they watered things down on the purchase page, but left other pages up. They also failed to tell Elon to tone down his tweets. Elon continued being Mr. Aspirational.

The product page is so watered down today that it doesn't convey much of anything.

Like it says "Autosteer on City Streets" coming soon, but FSD Beta is far more than autosteer on city streets.

It also says "Full Self Driving Computer" but why is that there when it says elsewhere that the car comes with all the HW needed for full self driving?

The order page mostly list a bunch of stale things that we know Tesla is going to fully ravamp. Like we know they revamped the Autopark to be Vision based already. We also know they're working on reverse summon and that's not on the page at all.

In short the purchase page is actually the least representative page there is. It's like some news story after Chinese censors got done with it.

In any case I think we can agree that FSD is an aspirational product, and from an aspirational point of view all FSD owners are in the same boat. We should all have the same autonomous driving aspirations for what we bought. :)
 

S4WRXTTCS

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Sure I can.

He's said lots of stuff that never happened.

You can, and I think an increasing amount of people are dismissing what he says as a result of all the misses.

But, at the same time I based my purchase specifically on what he tweeted. He promised that FSD owners would get HW3 for free, and that was a rationality I used as an excuse to buy FSD back in 2018.

That tweet was a pretty binary statement with no ambiguity. So it was pretty easy to use it to make a buying decision. It also came true as I knew it would.

But, even the weaker more aspirational stuff have a marketing element to them. Where no one is going to make a rational argument to buy because of them, but from an emotional pull they do respond. There has always been a FOMO quotient with FSD that this contributes to.

As a result I think we have to use his twitter to assess customer expectation even if we ourselves cringe at some of what he claims.
 

Knightshade

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Do you agree that there is ambiguity in the way the video is presented

The video isn't so much presented as just...there.

Nothing in the video claims it's showing you an existing product. It doesn't claim anything at all other than that it's showing you an L3 demo.


, and the disclaimer on the purchase page?

How is a new customer supposed to know its aspirational?

I think "does not make the vehicle autonomous" in reference to all of the listed features of the product is pretty clear.


The biggest problem with the way FSD has been sold from the very beginning is Tesla sold an aspirational product without conveying to customers that it was aspirational.

To be fair to Elon, I don't think he thought of it that way.

Back early on he repeatedly said how easy this would be to solve, and genuinely believed it wouldn't take all that long.

He's since learned otherwise of course (and admitted that much anyway)


Instead of fixing that problem in 3/2019 they opted to go the other route where they watered things down on the purchase page, but left other pages up.

FWIW I do agree the general /autopilot page ought to have been better modified to match the language on the sales page (and still think it should) but I imagine someone asked legal what the minimum they needed to do was, and this is what we got.



They also failed to tell Elon to tone down his tweets. Elon continued being Mr. Aspirational.

Well, he's many times admitted the problem was WAY harder than he thought.... but he keeps repeating a common engineer flaw, he thinks the current approach will work, then he finds a limitation so there's a new approach he thinks will work...repeat for several years now. Each approach is measurably better, so he's SURE to find the RIGHT approach, and maybe it's this very next one!



Like it says "Autosteer on City Streets" coming soon, but FSD Beta is far more than autosteer on city streets.

We're approaching philosophy here... but is it?

It already stops at lights and stop signs as part of normal FSD. So turning at intersections is just autosteer on city streets added to that.

FSDBeta also has many improvements to existing features but not really much of NEW ones apart from that.


It also says "Full Self Driving Computer" but why is that there when it says elsewhere that the car comes with all the HW needed for full self driving?

Because people with HW2.x can still buy FSD, and they're buying the new FSD. Which includes the computer if you don't already have it.



In any case I think we can agree that FSD is an aspirational product, and from an aspirational point of view all FSD owners are in the same boat. We should all have the same autonomous driving aspirations for what we bought. :)

I think I've been pretty clear on that?

That I believe if Tesla is able to actually deliver >L2, without untenable needed HW upgrades (ie nothing worse than another computer swap and in-place camera upgrades) that every FSD buyer will get that.


The difference between pre/post 3/19 buyers mainly comes down to who is owed what if they can't deliver >L2 on anything close to current/easy-upgrade HW. And the answer is in writing. Post-3/19 buyers? Nothing. Pre 3/19? Several possibilities including a refund.





You can, and I think an increasing amount of people are dismissing what he says as a result of all the misses.

But, at the same time I based my purchase specifically on what he tweeted. He promised that FSD owners would get HW3 for free, and that was a rationality I used as an excuse to buy FSD back in 2018.

That tweet was a pretty binary statement with no ambiguity. So it was pretty easy to use it to make a buying decision. It also came true as I knew it would.

He also promised the pre 3/19 buyers would all get into the EAP program, also a binary promise... and that didn't come true.

He also promised everyone who paid $3000 for FSD (and were told the price would always be higher later) would get a $1000 refund during the brief price drop to $2000. That also didn't come true... (ASK ME HOW I KNOW)
 

S4WRXTTCS

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May 3, 2015
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The video isn't so much presented as just...there.
But, people are going to go off of a video more than anything else.

As to the disclaimer regarding the vehicle not being autonomous it seems pretty clear that the intent is to make it autonomous. In a sense it doesn't act as a disclaimer as much as it acts as an advertisement about future intent.

When you factor in everything a buyer is shown from the various product pages, and Elons tweets its understandable why a person would think they were being promised autonomous driving.

There is enough ambiguity in what's being shown to allow different expectations.

I'm making this argument as someone who has never believed in the fairytale of FSD.

I didn't believe in it back in 11/2016 nor do I believe it today. I bought it in 2018 purely for aspirational reasons as that's all I could see it being.

The silver lining in FSD is the hope that it will give really good L2 performance. An L2 performance so complete, and so robust that it has a chance of either L3 or L4.

In terms of functionality there is only one FSD, and in terms of promise data we've all been given the same promise data of undefined.
 

S4WRXTTCS

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May 3, 2015
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Snohomish, WA
I don’t agree.

Makes absolute sense to separate, since they were promised different things.

It also limits Tesla refunds that makes it more likely.

What objectives are met by separating FSD buyers into two groups?

Are they separate things functionally speaking? No because EAP + Old FSD = New FSD
Is the HW different? No
Are most Tesla FSD owners even aware of the 3/2019 split? Probably not
Does Tesla customer service even know of this difference? Probably not
Did Tesla intend for the customer to notice the difference? Doesn't appear so
Are the expectations regarding functionality any different within the short and medium term future? No
If everything goes to crap with FSD will the pre/post 2019 line make a difference in refunds? Possibly depending on how the lawyers interpret things.

Given all that why muddy the water with it? Sure we know Tesla changed the wording and it did seem to water down the promise of FSD, but that impacts all FSD owners. I'm sure Tesla had internal reasons do so like limiting liability, and having clear objectives that could be met to recognize revenue.

But, to a customer its meaningless. FSD has always been aspirational because there was never a promise date for autonomous capabilities. There were only extremely optimistic projection dates blurted out by musk in both Tweets, and during earning calls.

Separating FSD buyers into two distinct groups seems to be used in an abusive manner. To tell people that their experience is invalid.

It always seems to be used negatively to push someone down.

Why would we do that to fellow Tesla owners?

The only time I can see it being beneficial is if the customer was sue happy and it was being used to inform them of an important difference that could impact their case.
 

Knightshade

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Jul 31, 2017
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But, people are going to go off of a video more than anything else.

I think they're going to go off of the only thing we actually know for sure got in front of their eyeballs

Which is the sales description during purchase- not the video.


When you factor in everything a buyer is shown from the various product pages

But the buyer is not shown any of that

They have to intentionally seek the video and other pages out.

The sales page, which makes it crystal clear post 3/19 they're buying ONLY an L2 system is the only thing Tesla actively shows them in order to purchase the thing

What was shown during purchase 3/19, in contrast, clearly tells you you're buying a system intended to eventually be L4 or better.



What objectives are met by separating FSD buyers into two groups?

If everything goes to crap with FSD will the pre/post 2019 line make a difference in refunds? Possibly depending on how the lawyers interpret things

You just answered your own question :)



Given all that why muddy the water with it? Sure we know Tesla changed the wording and it did seem to water down the promise of FSD, but that impacts all FSD owners

Nope.

Pre 3/19 buyers are still owed what they were promised to eventually get at time of purchase. What they were promised has not changed.

Which was, objectively, more than the post 3/19 buyers were promised.


If they only ever get to L2, all 3/19 and later buyers got everything promised during the sale. Pre 3/19 buyers did not.

Again this only matters for practical purposes if Tesla can't get past L2 in a reasonable fashion.


But it IS a difference, so continually insisting everything is exactly the same simply ain't so.
 
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EVNow

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What objectives are met by separating FSD buyers into two groups?
They were promised different things.

First group was promised essentially autonomous city driving with no monitoring, the second group was promised semi-autonomous city navigation (with monitoring).

By separating them, we can deal with them differently.

Most importantly, Tesla is more likely to partly refund the first group. This will make the small group of constant whiners in this forum go away. <-- This is the main benefit.
 

Knightshade

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Jul 31, 2017
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Most importantly, Tesla is more likely to partly refund the first group. This will make the small group of constant whiners in this forum go away. <-- This is the main benefit.


Though to be fair it likely would create an even larger group of whiners in this forum who didn't read what they were buying and think they are owed one as well.

I think the outcome likely to produce the lowest % of net whiners would be Tesla actually delivering an L4 or better system to everyone- that would narrow the whiners down to just those who are mad about how long it took.
 
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EVNow

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I think the outcome likely to produce the lowest % of net whiners would be Tesla actually delivering an L4 or better system to everyone- that would narrow the whiners down to just those who are mad about how long it took.
Also the least likely outcome, IMO.

As an investor, I would prefer Tesla to refund partly than take on the liability. Just not worth it.

ps : The refund needs to be at the time when FSD Beta can go wide and out of "early access" state. At that time Tesla can recognize most of the revenue and refund some to older FSD buyers. Then they can develop for HW4 without having to be backward compatible.
 
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S4WRXTTCS

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May 3, 2015
6,633
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Snohomish, WA
we can deal with them differently.

When you say we its a very small minority of people.

When you say deal you mean you to push the agenda that a small minority of people have. An agenda that conveniently discards things like the video or Elons comments on earnings calls. Where its so dependent on focusing only a very narrow amount of text that it's really a pet theory.

It's not a testable theory.

Tesla has never come forwards and said to group A you get autonomous, and group B you to pretend.

It's simply a perspective thing on how something is measured.

I don't measure < 3/2019 FSD as a promise because it never had a due date. Instead we have to make one up based on what we think is reasonable. I also don't see most of the bullet points under >3/2019 FSD as being complete because something to me isn't complete unless its acceptance rate is high among its buyers. You can't just slap a beta tag on it, and call it a day despite an abysmal failure rate. This is much different then from an accounting perspective where something can be recognized even it barely works.

I have no issue with those who want to claim there are two FSD offerings from an accounting perspective or a lawyer perspective. I'm neither of those two so what do I care? But, from an owner perspective? absolutely not.

My agenda isn't to minimize experiences.

My agenda is giving owners the freedom to express whatever experience they have. Now this does come with challenges when the "glass is half full" types go gushing on like its some darn love story. So I just try to scroll on by.

As to refunds I've always been a strong supporter of having some kind of refund offering that allowed at least a partial repayment to those unhappy with either EAP or FSD. As neither of those offering met expectation for a lot of owners. Maybe a reverse subscription thing minus any HW upgrade cost.
 

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