Tesla CEO Elon Musk said he is discussing with Google about the possibility of adding driverless technology to its vehicles.
Elon Musk believes that driverless technology is a logical step in the evolution of vehicles, that is why he has begun discussions with Google about the self-driving technology the automaker has been working on, which Musk compares with an airplane’s autopilot system.
“I like the word autopilot more than I like the word self- driving, ” Musk said in an interview. “Self-driving sounds like it’s going to do something you don’t want it to do. Autopilot is a good thing to have in planes, and we should have it in cars.”
Long-established automakers such as Nissan believe that fully autonomous vehicles will become reality in more than a decade, while Google sees this happening in about 5 years. The U.S. military’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has long pursued the driverless-car technology and Anthony Levandowski, product manager for Google’s self-driving car project said that this technology is expected to hit the market in about 5 years.
“The problem with Google’s current approach is that the sensor system is too expensive,” Musk said. “It’s better to have an optical system, basically cameras with software that is able to figure out what’s going on just by looking at things.”
Musk plans to reduce the price of Tesla’s car to make them more accessible for mainstream consumers. The base price for the Model S is $69,900 and Tesla plans to offer a model priced around $30,000 in the following years.