Tesla Collision Alert predicts the future, avoids highway accident

Dashcam footage from the Netherlands shows Tesla's new Autopilot safety systems alert for an accident ahead moments before one occurs.

Antuan Goodwin Reviews Editor / Cars
Antuan Goodwin gained his automotive knowledge the old fashioned way, by turning wrenches in a driveway and picking up speeding tickets. From drivetrain tech and electrification to car audio installs and cabin tech, if it's on wheels, Antuan is knowledgeable.
Expertise Reviewing cars and car technology since 2008 focusing on electrification, driver assistance and infotainment Credentials
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Antuan Goodwin
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Telsa's 8.0 software update introduced some interesting new features, including an enhancement to the Forward Collision Alert warning system that we see in action in the video below.

The dashcam footage, captured by Tesla driver Hans Noordsij from the Netherlands, shows that the Forward Collision Alert sounds seemingly warning for no reason; the car ahead hasn't even hit the brakes. Suddenly, there's a violent collision -- the Tesla has predicted the future. So, what's happening here?

According to Tesla's 8.0 update documentation:

...a Tesla will also be able to bounce the radar signal under a vehicle in front -- using the radar pulse signature and photon time of flight to distinguish the signal -- and still brake even when trailing a car that is opaque to both vision and radar.

Basically, the Model X's is following one of the best bits of advice I got when my father taught me to drive: "Watch the car ahead of the car in front of you and you'll have more time to react."

The forward-facing radar is able to see and detect when the vehicle two cars ahead begins emergency braking and can react before the driver (or the unfortunate driver immediately ahead) can do so, sounding an alert and even braking before the accident even occurs.