Tesla is raising the price of its self-driving option on its electric vehicles worldwide starting with a $1,000 (820) hike.
Founder Elon Musk tweeted that the price will continue to rise
as its technology improves. But the entrepreneur said the technology it's
adding will be worth more than $100,000.
Teslas' full self-driving (FSD) option is called Autopilot,
although it isn't fully autonomous.
Autopilot has a number of features including automatic lane
changes, parallel parking and a summon feature, which automatically parks and
retrieves the car. Its upcoming features include automatic traffic light and
stop sign control.
The self-driving option will cost $8,000 when the price rise
kicks in on 1 July. The FSD price will continue to rise as the software gets
closer to full self-driving capability with regulatory approval, Mr. Musk said
in a series of tweets on Monday.
At that point, the value of FSD is probably somewhere in excess
of $100,000. Tesla was investigated by regulators in the US after a driver was
killed while using Autopilot in 2018. However, the investigation discovered the
driver was playing a video game on his smartphone at the time of the crash.
The best-selling Tesla Model 3 currently sells for $33,690 in
the US if a driver opts for the basic package. With Autopilot this would
currently cost $40,690.