Tesla Autopilot Crushes Mercedes-Benz S65 & Hyundai Genesis

autopilot_handsoffThe auto industry is home to a great many well-funded and entrenched interests. Which has resulted in some interesting coverage of Tesla and some of its controversial offerings and technologies (like Autopilot). All of that said, it’s been hard for most to deny how impressively Tesla has been performing these last few years.

As a case in point on this subject, Motor Trend recently tested the autonomous capabilities of a number of different models (Cadillac CT6, Hyundai Genesis, Mercedes AMG S65, and Tesla Model S), and posted an excellent article on the subject…, Interestingly, though, despite how obviously superior the Tesla Model S was in almost every category, the coverage was somewhat muted in its praise.

As the TMC forum member “calisnow” commented in his post on the subject: “The fact that Tesla creamed the other cars on the most demanding section of the entire test is never mentioned once in words in the entire article — it’s left for careful readers to discover at the very end, literally the last graph in the last comparison.”

To be sure, reading between the lines, it’s obvious what a high regard the testers seem to have for the Tesla, but the coverage was still far less enthusiastic than you perhaps might read if it was a BMW or Mercedes possessing that level of performance … I wonder why.

That said, the coverage is well worth highlighting here — in particular, how thoroughly the Tesla Model S Autopilot function outperformed the others with regard to the number of “wheel grabs” (and time spent with hands on the steering wheel) on the two test routes used (a “35-mile stretch of an immaculately maintained 65-mph toll road, and a windy 17-mile, 55-mph two-laner”).


For #1, Route 241, here’s how proportion of time on the wheel and # of times touching the wheel broke out by car:

Proportion of Time Touching the Wheel

  • 11% — Hyundai Genesis
  • 10% — Mercedes-Benz S65
  • 2% — Tesla Model S

# of Times Touching the Wheel

  • 141 — Hyundai Genesis
  • 140 — Mercedes-Benz S65
  • 22 — Tesla Model S

And here’s the same info for #2, Santiago Canyon Rd:

Proportion of Time Touching the Wheel

  • 28% — Hyundai Genesis
  • 29% — Mercedes-Benz S65
  • 0.5% — Tesla Model S

# of Times Touching the Wheel

  • 148 — Hyundai Genesis
  • 113 — Mercedes-Benz S65
  • 12 — Tesla Model S

Despite leaving those eye-opening findings for the very end, there was some blunt praise for Tesla in the article, so I’ll end the article with this bit here: “The day before had been a rough 14 hours in the desert testing four cars with early evidence of autonomous features. On the way to the rough-and-ready outpost of Mojave, a fluke winter storm had come whistling through, building to 35-mph crosswinds as the temperature trapdoored toward freezing. Then, just past Willow Springs International Raceway, the snow started. I left the Tesla Model S’ Autopilot on, cautiously folded my arms, retracted my feet from the pedals, and sat amazed at what was happening.”

Here’s our chief editor’s first drive on Tesla Autopilot, the source of the photo at the top (jump to 28:13 to go straight to the Autopilot portion):

Via CleanTechnica

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *