Tesla plans automated passing for Model S

Tesla is always at the forefront of technology when it comes to EVs and the features that the cars offer buyers. Its Model S is widely regarded as one of the best electric vehicles on the road, even if it is one of the most expensive. Tesla promised back in March that it would be updating its Model S autopilot system in 3-4 months and we may have our first hint at what that update will bring.

Tesla has been working out how to solve liability issues surrounding automated driving tasks like allowing the Model S to pass vehicles while on autopilot. The solution it has been studying is as simple a using a turn signal. The automaker plans to allow semiautonomous passing of other vehicles when the driver uses the turn signal.

When the driver uses the turn signal it would signal the car that the driver has looked around the car and it is safe to pass. That would presumably put the liability for any accident caused during passing on the driver rather than Tesla.

Concern over who is responsible for an accident in an autonomous car is one of the biggest regulatory hurdles holding the tech back from moving into the market in masse. Tesla figures that simply hitting the turn signal puts all the responsibility onto the driver. I think we have all hit the turn signal and started to change lanes at some point and then realized a car was in our blind spot and stopped the maneuver suddenly, I wonder how Tesla will handle that situation. Tesla does acknowledge that the passing feature might not show up with the update this summer.