Watch Tesla's Model X Prototype Swerve Around on the Highway
It may have made its debut appearance in 2012, but the days, weeks, and months are slowly ticking down on Elon Musk’s all-new Tesla Model X. The electric crossover is expected to ship out to customers in early 2016, and with that imposing deadline likely comes a great deal of testing. This week, one Model X prototype in particular was spotted testing on California’s Interstate 280, not far from Tesla Motors’ production base in Fremont, and its activities are quite peculiar indeed. The following video shows the camouflaged Model X merging onto an off-ramp and veering dangerously close to the hard shoulder. RELATED: Take a closer look at the Tesla Model X concept
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It isn’t immediately clear whether this is the intended action of the driver, but what it likely demonstrates is a test of the company’s Autopilot system for the Model X. While in Autopilot, all new Model S sedans can steer and keep within driving lanes autonomously, thanks to forward facing cameras, radar, and long-range ultrasonic sensors. The driver in this instance could have been testing the limits of that lane-keep assist, judging by the aggressive jolts of the steering trajectory.
On another note, the roof of this Model X prototype presents an interesting point. The original Tesla Model X concept featured advanced ‘falcon wing’ rear doors, which folded up and out for easy access in tight parking. Early reports suggested the complexity of that feature meant it wouldn't make it to the production car, though judging by the video, the ‘falcon wing’ appear to be intact.
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