By Maria Medina

MOUNTAIN VIEW (KPIX 5) — New video shows Tesla’s autopilot feature failing at the same location where a Tesla driver crashed and died just a couple weeks ago in Mountain View.

The autopilot feature appears to have a fatal flaw.

Driver Shantanu Joshi was commuting on Highway 101 near Highway 85 and testing out what his Tesla would do on autopilot.

“I low key freaked out, but the car definitely starts swerving left without giving me any warnings, right into that divider,” Joshi said.

A video of the incident shows the Tesla begins to veer to the left, straight into the divider, and the car never gives the driver any warnings.

ALSO READ: Another Tesla Driver On Autopilot Nearly Crashes Trying To Recreate Fatal Crash

When the video is slowed down, you can see parts of the white lanes are faded and the car seems to think the left side of the lane — is the right.

Fred Barez is a professor of mechanical engineering at San Jose State University.

He said, “The lanes are not marked clearly on the road, so the camera attached to the Tesla vehicle is having a difficult time.”

Barez is building his own autonomous vehicles with students. He says lanes that aren’t clearly visible can be a challenge for Tesla’s autopilot feature.

Barez said, “Tesla believes in having eight cameras all around the vehicle and they monitor the presence of the lanes on the road.”

On its website, Tesla says it’s now also using a dozen updated ultrasonic sensors “allowing for detection of objects at nearly twice the distance of the prior system.”

The company also advises its customers to keep their hands on the wheels, and to pay attention.

Barez said, “I believe the Tesla is still pretty safe. It’s just a matter of the driver having to take responsibility as well.”

The driver in the deadly crash, according to Tesla, did not take control of the wheel despite warnings.

In his video Joshi grabs the wheel seconds before his Tesla would’ve slammed into the median:

A couple years ago, Tesla CEO Elon Musk told reporters that California needed better lane markings, because it was confusing his cars’ autopilot feature.

Tesla did not immediately respond to KPIX 5’s request for comment on Joshi’s video.

Comments (42)
  1. Someone with a Tesla decided they would drive to the same location and test it out. Obviously it’s a flaw in this one location. It doesn’t mean Tesla’s are fundamentally flawed. More media sensationalism.

    1. So, how many people are allowed to be slaughtered before you call it a failure? When you daughter gets run over?

      1. Guy Stephens says:

        If you cared to look at the date, Tesla vehicles performed around 40% better after installation of the auto-pilot feature. That means that the computer is 40% better than HUMANS! Do the math.

    2. Yawn, another Muskovite. God Elon can do no wrong.

  2. Read this on Drudge. Went to www. PressCalifornia.com for more real Silicon Valley news.

  3. The company also advises its customers to keep their hands on the wheels, and to pay attention.”

    Then why do you have an autopilot system that you CALL AUTOPILOT?!

  4. Jim Bishop says:

    Which version of AP is his on the guy’s car? Perhaps AP v 1?
    It’s an interesting problem, and one reason self-driving cars aren’t quite ready yet! Perhaps CPUs aren’t powerful enough or camera resolution isn’t good enough. I am puzzled why the AP system can’t identify the stationary barrier at the distance a human can.

    1. Let’s see, it killed one and wanted to kill a second. I would say it couldn’t identify it because it’s a piece of garbage. And it’s being allowed to misrepresent itself and being allowed to kill people in a grand experiment to get rid of commercial drivers that I didn’t vote for! Did you?!

  5. Russ Reecer says:

    don’t drive one in Colorado, the lane markings are barely visible to the eye, visible ONLY in bright sunny conditions, and not at all at night in any weather

  6. Mark Steele says:

    Wealthy people with cars subsidized by taxpayers playing with their toys on the freeway. Morons.

  7. What I saw was that the car keyed on the white line marking the far left edge of the road, much too far to the left. That line is very bold and visible. When the correct line became less obvious, the car “looked” for something to key on and found the edge-of pavement stripe. Watch again.

  8. If Stephen King made a car company, it would make an interesting family of vehicles.

    Perhaps, Elon should name this model, “Christine”.

  9. Phil Cooper says:

    Fat chance of getting CalTrans to bring lane markings up to the standards needed for reliable autopilot operation. They barely have enough resources to keep pot holes patched, because the Democrats in Sacramento have diverted the money into the Train to Nowhere and support for illegal aliens over the interests of citizens.

  10. Neal says:

    Auto-pilot, driverless cars… none of these will function adequately without proper infrastructure. They will also never function adequately on highways with human drivers. It just won’t happen. It is disturbing to me that the Federal Highway Administration continues to allow these vehicles on our highways.

  11. There are bad lane markings all over the country – but Musk wants them all maintained to his standards.

    The other night here in Seattle/Bellevue WA my Honda Accord with lane change warnings and “l and active lane-keeping assist suddenly moved me to the far left of the lane. Lane markings were good – and ALSO recent rain had made the right side of the lane (on 520 bridge westbound) wetter than the left and suddenly at a particular spot in the road reflections of road light/city light from the right side of the lane made a 4 foot strip of the right side of the line light up bright white – much brighter than the left’s drier dark asphalt.

    So my Accord immediately flashed it’s “lane departure warning” and tried to shove my car over.

    Don’t know what a Tesla would do on this road, but just to be sure Musk probably wants road drainage and lighting systems all over the country adjusted to meet his standards too.

  12. Steve Hollar says:

    Sensors? Yeah, that should work just fine. How many times have you seen the “Check Engine” light come on because of a bad sensor? I’ll drive my own damned car, thank you.

  13. There will be ultrasonic, radar and optical jammer kits and plans. Vandals will have a great time.

  14. I lived just outside Barstow ,Ca. for a few years and in between two interstate highways. Truckers with 1,000 watt boosters on their CB radios would make my TV go nuts dozens of times a day. If Teslas controls are not shielded properly they could be subject to interference.

  15. luismartinez1953 says:

    Get these things off the road before any more deaths!!!

  16. Well ‘nearly’ isn’t ‘did’. Cal-trans is the problem, not the Tesla. Every time CT ‘repairs’ something it gets worse. Shut is down and use private contractors. Cheaper, faster, better.

  17. Bottom line….pranksters in the future will paint over the white line to fool the sensors. They’ll rejoice when they can cause cars to crash. Extra points if the driver is killed. Welcome to a world without morals.

  18. In Vallejo, the streets are so poorly marked that my Tesla parked in its own trunk.

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