Tesla’s “Full Self-Driving” option, which currently enables Autopilot features like changing lanes on highways and automatic car parking, now costs $10,000, or $2,000 more than before. The price rise only covers the US for now, where the company’s Full Self-Driving functionality has just launched in limited beta, allowing Autopilot’s advanced driver-assist features to be used on local roads as well.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced the price increase in a tweet last week in response to the launch of the Full Self-Driving beta to a select group of customers. At the time, he said similar price increases would come to other markets with the beta. Musk has said he expects Full Self-Driving to see a “wide release” before the end of the year.
Despite its name, Full Self-Driving still requires constant monitoring, and Tesla says that drivers need to watch the road and keep their hands on the wheel at all times while it’s in use. As Tesla’s warning emotively puts it: “it may do the wrong thing at the worse time.” The feature is currently considered to meet the requirements of a Level 2 self-driving system according to the Society of Automotive Engineers’ standards.
The price of the Full Self-Driving option has been steadily increasing over the last couple of years. It increased from $5,000 to $6,000 in May last year, to $7,000 in November, and then to $8,000 back in June. But these price increases are chump change compared to the amount of value Musk thinks Tesla owners will eventually get out of the technology, which he says could be “somewhere in excess of $100,000.” Musk has said that once Tesla’s cars are able to drive themselves they’ll be able to work as a fleet of robotaxis, allowing them to earn money for their owners when not in use.