Tesla Drivers Hit 2 Billion Miles, 47 Million On Autopilot

Originally published on CleanTechnica.

Tesla has posted an update on total fleet miles driven, which just hit the 2 billion mark. This is exciting because the update came with a chart that beautifully depicts the trend chart over time and forecasted into the future. Over the next 2 years, the trend spikes up very quickly, as we would expect with production doubling every year, as is the plan for the next few years — resulting in total miles driven tracking along an exponential curve.

Speaking to just how crazy the exponential trend this is on actually is, the fleet has gone from 1 billion miles to 2 billion miles in less than a year! Absolutely astonishing considering it took almost 3 years to rack up the first billion miles. That’s 2 billion gasoline-free miles … awesome.

Equally impressive, the curve tracks right along with what we would expect as the output from the adoption % S-curves (yellow line below) that we have similarly been tracking for EV growth. The S-curve is one of our favorite graphs here at CleanTechnica because so many current clean technologies are ripe for liftoff on the S-curve trend line, implying disruptive growth. Electric Cars, Solar, Wind … as well as a handful of additional technologies that are on the horizon.


Worth noting, given the driving (or rather, traveling) in these electric automobiles — 47 million of those miles were on autopilot. This is almost more noteworthy, as all miles driven in autopilot (of which I may have accumulated a total of 4) give Tesla desperately needed information about the roads cars drive on, how the system is performing, how often drivers have to intervene, etc.

Tesla has shared that autopilot would be sending this information back up to the cloud, which it would use to dynamically improve the system. In the time autopilot has been live, we have seen autopilot dynamically improving day by day, but each car has to learn the same lessons. When test driving a car back in November, a Tesla rep shared that the functionality to use the information in the cloud from other autopilot drivers in order to improve was not yet functional.

However autopilot pans out, Tesla is arguably leading the pack when it comes to autopilot functionality and has shared farther-reaching goals related to autonomous driving than any other auto manufacturer. That’s not to say that things won’t change, but with Tesla already having 47 million miles worth of data from cars actively using autopilot, it has a head start that’s going to be tough to catch up to. (Editor’s Note: in case you missed these, I recommend the two articles from robotics expert Mike Barnard about why Tesla’s approach to self-driving cars seems superior to Google’s approach and the fact that Tesla has >40 times more miles driven on autopilot — gathering data — than Google has even though Google’s testing has been going on for several years and Tesla’s autopilot-equipped cars just hit the road.)

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