Tesla will build robotaxis without human control from 2024

  • Elon Musk says these Robotaxis will offer the lowest cost per mile of any public transport

  • This is a change of plan, since Tesla used to say it would use Model 3s as Robotaxis

  • Tesla started talking about Robotaxis in 2016 and promised to have a million on the road by 2020

Tesla has announced that it will build robotaxis without user control starting in 2024, which represents a significant change for the company’s initial plans.

Tesla and its CEO, Elon Musk, have been known to promise things and then change their minds. This seems to be another case where this happened.

In 2016, Musk started talking about Robotaxis, a fleet of autonomous vehicles that could be used to transport paying passengers.

This part of the plan has not changed, but its execution will be quite different from the original proposal. Indeed, Tesla used to say that its Robotaxis fleet would use private Model 3s equipped with Full Self-Driving (FSD) that would bring money to their owners when they didn’t need their car. instead of sitting idle in their driveway. It was also the reason given by the automaker for preventing people from buying back their Model 3s at the end of the lease, saying they were needed for Robotaxi functions.

This is no longer the case. Elon Musk recently announced that Tesla is working on a purpose-built Robotaxi that won’t just be a modified version of one of their current models. According to the CEO, these vehicles will have a futuristic look and they will be devoid of any user controls, meaning there will be no pedals or steering wheel.

These taxis are supposed to be launched in 2024, but they could be a little further away, since the initial plan called for one million Robotaxis to be on the road by 2020 and the self-driving software they will use just beginning to be tested on the public. roads at the end of last year.

Nonetheless, Musk says these Robotaxis will offer the lowest cost per mile of any public transportation currently available, even those that are subsidized.

Tesla said it expects a product reveal sometime next year, by which time more details should be known about the program and the vehicle itself.

James V. Hayes