Mars-gazing solar panel enthusiast, Tesla tycoon, and probable Bond villain Elon Musk announced Wednesday night that all Teslas built from today forward will come with a next-gen suite of sensors and hardware capable of handling Level 5 autonomy. Translation: They'll be fully self-driving. You'll literally never have to touch the controls.
At first blush, this is just another eye-roll announcement from a man whose typical modus operandi is aggressively pushing development faster than anyone thinks is safe, or humanly possible. We've called bullshit on Tesla countless times now, and the company has been slammed with criticism on all sides for the dangers inherent in its Autopilot system -- an early iteration of a technology that drivers just aren't ready for.
The other side of this lofty, pie-in-the-sky announcement, though, is that for the time being, Tesla is actually deactivating Autopilot in all new cars. And that's a very, very good sign that Tesla might finally get its act together and do what every other major car manufacturer is doing: skip the dangerous half-steps and go straight to full autonomy.