Tesla Slashes Full Self Driving Subscription Price

Reduction follows the introduction of a free one-month trial on the new Tesla Model S, Model X and Model Y announced last month

Graham Hope

April 15, 2024

3 Min Read
Tesla signage

Tesla has halved the subscription cost of its Full Self-Driving (FSD) software for owners in the United States.

The FSD package – which despite its name, delivers Level 2 partial automation, as defined by the Society of Automotive Engineers – will now cost $99 a month, rather than the previous rate of $199.

The reduction follows the introduction of a free one-month trial on the new Tesla Model S, Model X and Model Y that was announced by CEO Elon Musk at the end of March.

This coincided with an edict from Musk that all new customers were given a short test ride before their car is handed over. “Almost no one actually realizes how well (supervised) FSD actually works,” he told staff in a leaked internal email.

The latest move was also confirmed by Musk to his 180 million followers on X, and is clearly another attempt by the automaker to increase uptake of the tech.

View post on X

“Supervised full self-driving now $99/month,” he said simply, although his choice of language was interesting. Tesla in the past has drawn fierce criticism for its misleading marketing of FSD, and is now commonly referring to it as “supervised” to reinforce that it does not deliver fully autonomous capability.

FSD is a step up from Tesla’s Autopilot software and offers functionality that allows cars to handle tasks such as lane changes, navigating round objects and controlling acceleration and deceleration. It is also claimed to recognize traffic signals and road signs and can be used on local roads as well as on highways.

Related:Tesla Recalls 200,000 Vehicles for Rearview Camera Problems

But it has not been without its critics. Anecdotal evidence from users on social media paints a picture of occasional erratic behavior, and FSD, alongside Autopilot, has also been subject to intensive investigation from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration following a number of collisions with stationary vehicles, as well as the subject of a massive recall over a crash risk at intersections.

The latest version of FSD features an increased reliance on neural networks, which is being touted as a significant step forward and there’s a variety of reasons why the firm is likely to be keen to increase take-up, which some industry insiders speculate could be in the region of 20%.

Obviously, more subscriptions would mean more revenue, which will be welcome after a first quarter that saw Tesla deliveries fall 8% year on year and 20% from the previous quarter.

Increased usage would also generate more data, which will assist in training the AI to improve the FSD product and also, more generally, enhance Tesla’s ability to deliver full autonomy – which would be handy given that Musk is promising to unveil a robotaxi in August.

Related:Tesla Recalls 1.6 Million Vehicles in China

The price for a one-off purchase for lifetime FSD is currently $12,000.

About the Author(s)

Graham Hope

Graham Hope has worked in automotive journalism in the U.K. for 26 years, including spells as editor of leading consumer news website and weekly Auto Express and respected buying guide CarBuyer.

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