While it appears Tesla has been having no problem baffling its customers - and U.S. regualtors - with the b*llshit of Full-Self Driving, it appears the editors over at Consumer Reports are sharp enough to understand exactly what is going on.
The reputable consumer advocate periodical-turned-website said on Tuesday that it was was "concerned" about Tesla using its existing owners to "beta-test" new features, something Tesla shorts and Musk skeptics have been harping on for years.
Consumer Reports is concerned with the fact that software like Full Self Driving "subjects others on public roads to an experiment they didn’t agree to".
Jake Fisher, Senior Director of Consumer Reports' Auto Test Center echoed our sentiments about the FSD Beta version 9, telling Bloomberg the "new" beta features “don’t show a system that makes driving safer or even less stressful.”
CR opined on its criticisms in an article called "Tesla’s ‘Full Self-Driving’ Beta Software Used on Public Roads Lacks Safeguards".
CR says it "plans to independently test the software update, popularly known as FSD beta 9, as soon as our Model Y SUV receives the necessary software update from Tesla", which we're sure Elon has software engineers working on improving this very moment before punting an OTA update to what is probably a "special" Model Y for Consumer Reports.
But until the software can be tested, the magazine said that its "experts have watched videos posted on social media of other drivers trying it out and are concerned with what they’re seeing—including vehicles missing turns, scraping against bushes, and heading toward parked cars."
This is exactly what we pointed out days ago after the release of the much awaited FSD 9.0 which, like everything Tesla releases, showed up later than expected.
Bryan Reimer, a professor at MIT told CR: “...while drivers may have some awareness of the increased risk that they are assuming, other road users—drivers, pedestrians, cyclists, etc.—are unaware that they are in the presence of a test vehicle and have not consented to take on this risk.”
Fisher continued: “Tesla just asking people to pay attention isn’t enough—the system needs to make sure people are engaged when the system is operational. We already know that testing developing self-driving systems without adequate driver support can—and will—end in fatalities.”
“Consumers are simply paying to be test engineers for developing technology without adequate safety protection,” Fisher concluded.
As usual, despite the nation's most reputable consumer advocate publication sounding the alarm, we're certain that regulators like the NHTSA and FTC will continue to sit on their hands and let Elon Musk get away with...well, you know.