Recently news surfaced that China has banned the use of Tesla cars over the concerns of amount 0f cameras and sensors available on the car. The cars will not be allowed for use in government buildings, military bases and other locations which the Chinese think could have security concerns. That means the cars won’t be banned from sale only use in certain areas of the country. So not a total ban. But this story means that we can revisit the capabilities of a Tesla and also understand what has been the response from Elon Musk. Let’s find out more about China concerning over Tesla spying in the country.
Tesla Autopilot and Systems
This is the system that has all the cameras that scare the Chinese. What is it? Autopilot advanced safety and convenience features are designed to assist you with the most burdensome parts of driving. Autopilot enables your car to steer, accelerate and brake automatically within its lane. Current Autopilot features require active driver supervision and do not make the vehicle autonomous. But how does it do it? Eight surround cameras provide 360 degrees of visibility around the car at up to 250 meters of range. Twelve updated ultrasonic sensors allowing for the detection of both hard and soft objects at nearly twice the distance of the prior system. A forward-facing radar with enhanced processing provides additional data about the world on a redundant wavelength that is able to see through heavy rain, fog, dust and even the car ahead.
This is a very sophisticated system that has been developed for driving autonomously. With the Chinese, they are thinking that these systems are also being used for nefarious purposes like spying on officials or being used at military compounds.
What did Elon Musk say?
These restrictions surfaced as the top Chinese and U.S. diplomats were holding a meeting in Alaska. Musk urged greater mutual trust between the world’s two biggest economies, in his remarks to the China Development Forum. He was holding a discussion panel with Xue Qikun, a Chinese quantum physicist who heads the Southern University of Science and Technology.
“There’s a very strong incentive for us to be very confidential with any information,” Musk told a prominent Chinese forum during a virtual discussion. “If Tesla used cars to spy in China or anywhere, we will get shut down.”
What does it mean in the future for Tesla in China
It will not affect Tesla. China is a major market for EVs where cars are being incentivized. The state wants to reduce its carbon footprint massively by shifting to clean energy. Tesla sold 147,445vehicles last year, 30% of its global total in China. So business as usual will continue.
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