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Has COVID-19 Destroyed Tesla’s Plans for Robotaxis?

published: 2020-04-15 19:30

Tesla is planning to bring Robotaxi to the world in 2020. But do you still need it in the post-COVID-19 world?

Image by Dominick Vietor from Pixabay

Elon Musk has tweeted recently that he is hopeful that Tesla’s Robotaxis will be ready by the end of 2020, at least in terms of functions.

By functions, the serial entrepreneur may be talking about the “Full Self-Driving feature-complete”, the self-driving technology that can provide the passengers a complete cruising experience without requiring any human input.

People’s Transport Preferences Are Changing

According to the findings from Forbes, there have been considerable changes in the landscape of transport.

  • The volume of the Uber and LYFT rides has decreased drastically. The government imposed restrictions over travels are not the only reason.
  • Consumers are concerned that they may get infected from the drivers or the interior of the cars

These findings pose a question: in the post-COVID-19 world, how do you travel without getting infected?


Robotaxis Seem to be The Answer

Due to the lockdown, you are reluctant to buy a new car. Because you are likely to have lower disposable income.

Keeping your old car is also expensive due to all the taxes and maintenance fees.

Getting rid of the old car and completely relying on cabs/ Uber seems risky. Because you are worried that you might get infected by the driver.

Here is where the Robotaxi comes in.


Uber without the Human Touch

Tesla Robotaxis are self-driving cars (SAE Level 4 or 5), which is part of Tesla’s ride-sharing network, whose business model is quite similar to Uber without the human touch.

Ride-sharing with self-driving cars seems an ideal solution to the current transport predicament, which is possible to fundamentally change the landscape of the transport industry.

Circling back to the question raised earlier: 

The short answer is yes.

Cars are expensive, whether getting a new one or keeping an old one simply is not cost-beneficial.

However, you still want to be able to get around without being infected by a human driver. And Robotaxis are the way to go.





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