Would you entrust your life to a car’s algorithmic intelligence? Would you curl up in the backseat and take a nap while your vehicle navigates hectic freeway traffic or busy intersections? Would you let your car be the designated driver while you have a night out on the town?
According to Tesla CEO Elon Musk, we are essentially within a year of such technology existing, though he adds the caveat that it will likely take longer before the system is fully deployed and adopted.
Earlier this month, Musk announced the advance at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference in Shanghai. He has since elaborated during several podcast interviews.
To Cathie Wood and Tasha Keeney of ARK Invest in a podcast, he stated:
“I think we will be feature complete — full self-driving — this year. Meaning the car will be able to find you in a parking lot, pick you up and take you all the way to your destination without an intervention, this year.”
Musk added that you can expect to be able to take a nap behind the wheel if you want.
“My guess as to when we would think it is safe for somebody to essentially fall asleep and wake up at their destination? Probably towards the end of next year.”
Such technology would be a first-of-its-kind level 5 autonomous vehicle in which the car capable of handling all driver functions without human assistance or supervision.