Tesla releases FSD Beta v12.1.2 promising a step forward in autonomy

Max McDee, 23 January 2024

Tesla is once again making headlines with the release of its Full Self-Driving Beta (FSD Beta) version 12.1.2, update 2023.44.30.12. This eagerly anticipated update brings with it the promise of a more advanced autonomous driving experience. Yes, we heard it all before but this one - apparently - is the one. Almost.

Unquestionably, the most significant change in FSD Beta 12.1.2 is the adoption of an end-to-end neural network, a departure from the previous explicit C++ coding. This neural network, trained on a vast dataset of video clips, promises to enhance Tesla's Advanced Driver Assist System (ADAS). While it's a commendable move towards a more sophisticated system, it's important to note that Tesla still labels this version as beta. Elon Musk's earlier hints of FSD coming out of beta seem to have taken a detour. Again.

The V12.1.2 release is for the first time available to non-employees, and Tesla influencer @WholeMarsBlog was among the first to showcase this update. Early user reports suggest that FSD Beta v12.1.2 offers a more intuitive and human-like driving experience. However, as history has shown, excitement often accompanies such releases. While this update is promising, it won't magically propel us to level 4 or even level 3 autonomy. It's a step in the right direction. Here is the first short test video:

An instantly notable improvement is how FSD Beta v12.1.2 handles urban driving scenarios. Smoother transitions and quicker response times contribute to a more comfortable driving experience, closely mirroring human driving behavior. This shouldn't come as a surprise, as the system now draws inspiration from videos of actual human drivers, rather than relying solely on engineer-written code.

Another intriguing feature is the ability of the vehicle to autonomously pull over to the side of the road, as originally demonstrated in Elon Musk's live stream. This added functionality adds a layer of convenience to the driving experience, making it even more user-friendly.

Surprisingly, Tesla hasn't provided its usual extensive technical release notes for this milestone update. Instead, they offer a single sentence describing FSD Beta v12's major change: "FSD Beta v12 upgrades the city-streets driving stack to a single end-to-end neural network trained on millions of video clips, replacing over 300k lines of explicit C++ code."

Tesla releases FSD Beta v12.1.2 promising a step forward in autonomy

Looking ahead, the true performance of FSD Beta v12.1.2 will become clearer as more Tesla owners receive the update and share their feedback. Testing in diverse driving conditions, especially those with heavy precipitation, will be crucial, as mentioned by Elon Musk. However, the rollout of this update is expected to be gradual and slow, meaning it could be months before most Tesla owners have access to it. Tesla will likely gather user feedback and continue refining the system with subsequent beta releases.

It's important to maintain a sense of skepticism when discussing the transition to full autonomy. Tesla's FSD technology, while innovative, remains in beta for a reason. Achieving full autonomy is an intricate and gradual process that demands rigorous testing and validation. Each update, like v12.1.2, brings us closer to realizing the dream of fully autonomous vehicles, but we should remember that we're not there just yet.



Reader comments

Even unprotected turns are perfectly aligned with 90 degrees to each other and 90-95% of drivers obey the rules in the US. roads are so wide and all roads have visible lanes. there are no unexpected holes on the road surface that you need to avoid. a...

  • Sven

In general yes. But there are also difficult situations like unprotected turns.

haha...Musk probably didn't study the non-US world. I drove in the US. it is one of the most perfect and easy traffic you can drive in.



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