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Performance FSD


Apr 4, 2020
Chester UK
Apologies, this post is somewhat tongue in cheek but I do wonder whether Performance Teslas in particular are being rather compromised by FSD?

My Long Range is no slouch (has the acceleration boost), is an absolute pleasure to control & after having a license for well over 40 years I feel reasonably confident to handle most driving conditions (with the useful option of Tesla collision warning).

I enjoy the manual acceleration, regenerative braking & steering responsiveness of this car & I’ve driven several Model S & 3 Performance models since 2017. At no point driving any of these have I thought “hmm maybe I’ll let the car accelerate more slowly, brake erratically and misread road speeds”, at the same time still needing to hold the wheel, hover over the accelerator & frequently take back control for various ‘un programmed or un mapped’ driving situations.... the car was far too much fun for that.

Using Autopilot on a motorway has its place but first time on any ’new’ route or with strong sun/shadows, I always need to anticipate sudden deceleration & this adds a level of tension to the basically stress free experience of driving the car manually. This isn't just the UK as my Daughters Californian Model X has FSD & I've had happen over there too including a few other dangerous occurrences, in spite of being the place the software is developed & most heavily used.

In every other current situation I couldn’t face the potential embarrassment of such a high tech, lowered, spoilered & red callipered machine doing something erratic in full view of other road users who may well assume the cause was was the idiot at the wheel rather than the techie at a desk. (I'm planning on getting a Model Y Performance in a few years & by then the range will most likely be well beyond that of my current car)

FSD seems to me to add a greater need for extreme alertness rather than reducing stress. Maybe the rewrite will eventually iron things out but I remain sceptical that during my lifetime it will handle the historically challenging UK network including temporary roadworks, congested cities, shared spaces, one width country lanes etc.

As for managing stop signs, traffic lights etc the only occasions where I see ‘hot’ cars ignoring these seem to be deliberate rather than the ability of the driver to actually recognise the need to halt. On that basis, how many P model drivers are so inexperienced or doddery that they need the car to handle the junction in a more cautious manner than they could do themselves?

In my opinion a Performance Tesla deserves to be ‘driven’, not permanently at the limit but enjoyably and in a manner befitting the ability & pride of its owner. Autopilot/EAP/FSD in its current form seems the antithesis to that…. probably more Future Software Development than Full Self Driving.

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