Nearly 150,000 Tesla cars use the company’s new “Safety Score”, a tool rolled out last month to determine whether owners can access the beta version of its “Full Self-Driving” software, executives said during its call for third quarter results.
While 150,000 cars are now part of the fully autonomous driving (FSD) beta registration program, a fraction of drivers have had access to the software. Only 2,000 drivers have been able to test the FSD program in the past year. Earlier this month, Tesla rolled out version 10.2 to around 1,000 more owners with perfect safety scores.
Tesla charges $ 10,000 for FSD software, which CEO Elon Musk has promised for years will one day deliver full self-driving capabilities. However, Tesla vehicles equipped with FSD are not autonomous. FSD is an advanced driver assistance system that includes a number of automated features, including its Summon parking tool as well as Navigate on Autopilot, an active guidance system that allows a car to shift from a ramp to a ramp. highway to an exit ramp, including interchanges and lane changes.
The latest beta of FSD is supposed to automate driving on highways and city streets. It is still a level 2 driver assistance system that requires the driver to pay attention, have their hands on the wheel and take control at all times.
While the security score, which has to be a perfect 100 to access beta software, is used to limit access to FSD, Tesla has other uses in mind. The company wants to use this feature to better inform its burgeoning telematics insurance product, which just launched in Texas in early October. The safety score takes into account things like braking, cornering, tailgating, forward collision warnings, and forced autopilot disengages to predict the likelihood of a collision.
So far, Tesla has gathered more than 100 million kilometers of driving data, which analysis has shown that the likelihood of a collision for a customer using a safety score compared to someone not using no safety score is 30% lower, according to Zachary Kirkhorn. , chief financial officer of Tesla.
“It means the product is working and customers are responding to it,” he said.
Because Tesla cars are connected, the company was able to use huge amounts of data to assess driver attributes and whether those attributes correlate with safety, Kirkhorn said. Tesla used this driving history data to create the model capable of predicting the likelihood of a collision over a period of time.
“The model is not perfect, the model is based on the data we have,” Kirkhorn said. “As this dataset continues to grow, we keep experimenting with new variables… and from this model capable of predicting collision frequency, we can then line it up with a price curve. “
This allows Tesla to offer individualized pricing that is “in-car, in-app, in-customer experience,” with a feedback loop that communicates to the driver what driving adjustments need to be made to reduce the burden. probability of a collision. after each trip.
When Tesla began researching insurance, the company discovered that traditional insurance companies calculated premiums based on static and existing data, such as accident history, marital status, l age or other demographic information. Kirkhorn said the result is that low-risk clients end up overpaying for their insurance, and that overpayment then goes to subsidize riskier clients.
“As we looked at this and looked at the data, we thought it just didn’t seem to be right,” Kirkhorn said.
Tesla has offered insurance in California for about two years, but Texas is the first state where those premiums will be dictated by safety scores. The company has a roadmap of additional states to launch insurance as it receives regulatory approvals, and its goal is to be present in all major markets in which Tesla cars exist, Kirkhorn said.