FSD is now three times as expensive as it was originally.
Despite what the name might imply, Tesla's Full Self-Driving (FSD) capability is not a fully autonomous system. In the automotive industry, a fully autonomous car is rated Level 5, and no car in existence has gone up that high.
FSD is only a Level 2+ system, combining features like automatic lane change, adaptive cruise control, and self-parking with a few additional active driver assists. Despite this, Tesla has repeatedly raised prices for its FSD software, first doubling it from $5,000 to $10,000 before landing on the current $12,000 fee, but another increase is coming.
That's a high price for L2 software, especially considering there's no guarantee you will get the tech if you pay. Tesla currently requires an invitation into its "FSD Beta" for owners to unlock the feature. If your safety score (an internal Tesla statistic) isn't high enough, you won't receive an invite. But that all may change soon.
On Sunday, Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted about changes to FSD pricing. It's going up again, but it may be more widely available now.
"After wide release of FSD Beta 10.69.2, price of FSD will rise to $15k in North America on September 5th," Musk said in the tweet. This is a $3,000 increase from the current price, and it's unclear what he meant by "wide release." This could mean that more owners will have the chance to experience the latest FSD version, but it seems unlikely that every single Tesla owner paying for it will have access.
Musk still used the term "beta" to describe the product, a phrase describing a pre-release of software given to users to try under real-world conditions to find bugs. This is a common practice in the video game industry, but it's less widespread in the automotive sector, given the potential dangers of using unfinished software to drive cars.
As we stated, it's unclear if Tesla plans to change the requirements for getting into the FSD Beta.
These requirements vary a bit depending on region but reportedly include a 98-100 (out of 100) Safety Score over a seven-day monitoring period. This means that FSD can be removed from owners who fail to maintain their scores. Just imagine paying $15,000 for a Tesla Model Y with FSD, then having it later taken away.
It's unclear why Tesla won't give FSD to everyone who pays for it. The company's lesser Autopilot software is under investigation after a series of fatal accidents, but FSD has been less prone to deadly crashes. Perhaps this is because fewer owners have access compared to Autopilot and are also vetted.
"Current price will be honored for orders made before Sept 5th, but delivered later," Musk added, meaning that anyone waiting for their FSD-equipped Tesla to arrive will not be forced to pay the additional $3,000 price hike. "Note, you can upgrade your existing car to FSD in 2 mins via the Tesla app."
Musk didn't specify what improvements will be included in version 10.69.2, but a complete set of patch notes will likely be sent to owners when the software is installed, hopefully, with enough updates and improvements to make that rather large financial pill a little easier to swallow.