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The biggest surprise I have after two weeks of Model 3

My daily commute is 40 miles round trip and in the past five years I had been driving a Infiniti G37x over 50k miles. I'm a bit impatient on the highway and most time I'm over 80mph on the left lane. Not surprisingly I got one speeding ticket every year or two and frankly I deserve it. Even worse, I'm also easily distracted when driving on local roads so my G37 rear-ended people five times. Three with no scratches so all were good, but the other two were $5k and $7.5k each. The last one ($7.5k) happened month ago and the insurance company decided to total the car.

Of course I had been eyeing at Tesla for quite a while and the last accident helped me to pull the trigger. I placed an order for a basic SR+ right the next day. The top reason I decided to buy M3 is that joy of instant torque and fast acceleration - I knew I'd love to drive it fast (but not too fast given my driving habits). The second is the anti collision feature that hopefully will stop me from eventually rear-ending half of the cars around the city. Autopilot? I heard enough bad stories on internet I didn't give it a serious thought.

Now two weeks later after driving the SR+ over 700 miles, it's amazing to see how the car completely changed me. Totally unexpected, my driving mentality/personality flipped 180 degree after getting used to autopilot. I become perfectly happy to stay behind other cars, letting autopilot do as much driving as possible and keeping the distance. I even have no problem to "crawl" under 60mph on the right lane because, heck, I'm not the one with foot on pedal driving the car so I just don't care. Traffic jam changes from hell to nothing, b/c I can totally relax with autopilot on as long as I don't have to rush. I do keep my left hand on steering wheel and my eyes on road, but still like many people said, it's so much less taxing with autopilot. To me it's like 70% less tiring on everyday commute.

In the end, I realized that I didn't just buy a car made by Tesla, I actually got a chauffeur from Tesla too doing 70% of my driving. Or, it's like I'm riding the free Uber everyday. More importantly, I believe that autopilot helped me to become a so much safer driver to everyone else on the road and to myself. It's just fantastic!

Of course, I still enjoy tremendously to sprint the car time to time, but for my daily commute M3's autopilot is godsend and the biggest surprise to me in terms of owning a Tesla.

Now I'm just patiently waiting for the FSD to be fully implemented before forking over $7k...
 
My daily commute is 40 miles round trip and in the past five years I had been driving a Infiniti G37x over 50k miles. I'm a bit impatient on the highway and most time I'm over 80mph on the left lane. Not surprisingly I got one speeding ticket every year or two and frankly I deserve it. Even worse, I'm also easily distracted when driving on local roads so my G37 rear-ended people five times. Three with no scratches so all were good, but the other two were $5k and $7.5k each. The last one ($7.5k) happened month ago and the insurance company decided to total the car.

Of course I had been eyeing at Tesla for quite a while and the last accident helped me to pull the trigger. I placed an order for a basic SR+ right the next day. The top reason I decided to buy M3 is that joy of instant torque and fast acceleration - I knew I'd love to drive it fast (but not too fast given my driving habits). The second is the anti collision feature that hopefully will stop me from eventually rear-ending half of the cars around the city. Autopilot? I heard enough bad stories on internet I didn't give it a serious thought.

Now two weeks later after driving the SR+ over 700 miles, it's amazing to see how the car completely changed me. Totally unexpected, my driving mentality/personality flipped 180 degree after getting used to autopilot. I become perfectly happy to stay behind other cars, letting autopilot do as much driving as possible and keeping the distance. I even have no problem to "crawl" under 60mph on the right lane because, heck, I'm not the one with foot on pedal driving the car so I just don't care. Traffic jam changes from hell to nothing, b/c I can totally relax with autopilot on as long as I don't have to rush. I do keep my left hand on steering wheel and my eyes on road, but still like many people said, it's so much less taxing with autopilot. To me it's like 70% less tiring on everyday commute.

In the end, I realized that I didn't just buy a car made by Tesla, I actually got a chauffeur from Tesla too doing 70% of my driving. Or, it's like I'm riding the free Uber everyday. More importantly, I believe that autopilot helped me to become a so much safer driver to everyone else on the road and to myself. It's just fantastic!

Of course, I still enjoy tremendously to sprint the car time to time, but for my daily commute M3's autopilot is godsend and the biggest surprise to me in terms of owning a Tesla.

Now I'm just patiently waiting for the FSD to be fully implemented before forking over $7k...
Don't think of the Tesla doing the driving - think of it assisting driving and making it easier. You still need to be alert.
 
I've had mine for 3 weeks now and I've found the exact same thing as the OP. The biggest surprise has been how I have mellowed in my driving. I wasn't typically aggressive behind the wheel but my stress level driving home was pretty high. Now I'm all relaxed. Strange.

This last weekend I drove the car into the mountains for skiing and amidst all of the traffic I was as calm as can be as the car did the heavy lifting while I applied gentle pressure to the steering wheel. It was truly a wild experience for me. In the 5 hours of round trip driving time I had it on AP for about 4 hours. It never made a single mistake in speeds ranging from 0-75 mph. I'm still going to watch it like a hawk but I love where this is going.
 

yerEVan

Active Member
Dec 29, 2018
1,516
2,653
Near Philly
Pittsburgh is actually an awesome city for car enthusiasts. Local cops cannot use radar/lidar for speed traps. They have to manually time you between two reference points (two white lines on the road usually).
Pitt is a great city, i meant because of the OP's comment about rear-ending people.
 
Don't think of the Tesla doing the driving - think of it assisting driving and making it easier. You still need to be alert

Totally agree. I probably over-simplied a little bit how I feel and use the autopilot. It's a kind of feedback loop of interaction and trust between me and the AP. Overall I'm growing more and more confident on what AP does and does not, and that in turn helps my mind better relaxed by knowing what to expect from and react to AP. I can only imagine this will keep getting better over the time.

Hope FSD will become the reality sooner than later.
 
I appreciate Autosteer for stop and go traffic but have mixed feelings about using it in other scenarios. I've found I generally can't tolerate it for long on highways because it resolves simple concerns by decelerating. Even this morning, it decided to decelerate because a car was merging, not into, but out of the lane. These changes in speed actually increase my anxiety because my feeling is that other drivers are not expecting deceleration in response to such innocuous situations.
 
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Yeah, I don’t use AutoPilot if I want to feel relaxed. Airplane manufacturers figured out a long time ago that having people watch over computers doesn’t work nearly as well as the other way around. Babysitting AutoPilot while waiting for the next near death phantom braking experience is not relaxing.

Speaking of phantom braking, I really haven't encountered it so far. Could just because the highway and roads I drive. There is one occasion that when passing one particular exit the AP always thinks the speed limit becomes 35mph and suddenly reduces the car limit to 50mph (I set +15mph limit). This happens every time and I just bump the speed limit back to 70.

On some local roads AP refuses to go over 40 (35 limit) or 45 (40 limit). Sounds reasonable but it's hard to see why it doesn't do the same to other similar roads.
 

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