Tesla used to offer an optional Enhanced Autopilot that built upon the standard system
This could be a middle step between the free Autopilot and the $12,000 USD Full Self-Driving
This system has been made available in New Zealand and Australia, which could hint at a return in North America
Tesla could bring back the Enhanced Autopilot in order to offer more driver assistance features to owners that don’t want to spend the $12,000 to have access to the Beta version of Full Self-driving in the US.
Since Tesla made its basic Autopilot system standard on all of its vehicles, it removed the previously available Enhanced Autopilot, which had a few additional features while not being as complete as the Full Self-Driving (FSD) system.
This option has now been reintroduced in Australia and New Zealand and the company’s CEO seems favorable to a possible return in the United States and Canada.
In their current forms, the three driver assistance packages from Tesla have different abilities that justify their difference in costs.
The standard Autopilot system included in the costs of every new Tesla model is capable of controlling the car on the highway while drivers have their hands on the steering wheel at all times. This system is similar to many other automaker’s offerings with the difference that it combines the lane centering assist and the adaptive cruise control system under a single name.
The Enhanced Autopilot adds the navigate feature which allows the car to make its own lane changes as well as enter and exit highways on its own. Also part of the package are the Autopark and Summon features, which allow the vehicle to park itself and theoretically navigate a parking lot to pick up its passengers at the door.
Stepping up to the Full Self-Driving adds the capability to recognize traffic lights and stop signs, as well as the possibility for the driver to enter an address on the navigation system and let the car drive its way there. This is currently only available in Beta for certain owners in the United States.
Since FSD is very expensive and it might not be available to every buyer for a number of years still, many owners of Tesla vehicles want the company to bring back the Enhanced Autopilot in North America.