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Tesla continues to cut back on its vehicles. Ultrasonic sensors are now being removed from Model 3 and Model Y

Tesla is removing ultrasonic sensors from Model 3 and Model Y vehicles, the next step in CEO Elon Musk’s plan to use only cameras and software to support its advanced driver assistance system and other active safety features.

Starting this month, all Model 3 and Model Y vehicles produced for North America, Europe, the Middle East and Taiwan will no longer be equipped with the 12 ultrasonic sensors that were previously installed on the front and rear bumpers of the vehicles. Ultrasonic sensors, which measure distance using ultrasonic waves, are commonly used as parking proximity sensors.

Tesla announced the changes about 17 months after it said it would remove the radar from its vehicles. The decision to ditch radar or ultrasonic sensors runs counter to the approach of the rest of the industry, which is adding rather than removing sensors from its vehicles to support self-driving systems.

Automakers typically use a combination of radar and cameras, and some even a laser rangefinder, to provide adaptive cruise control, which adjusts the vehicle’s speed to surrounding traffic, as well as allowing you to keep lane and change lanes.

Tesla began its so-called Tesla Vision plan in 2021 when it removed the radar from Model 3 and Model Y vehicles made in North America, followed by the Model S and Model X in 2022. Earlier this year, Tesla expanded it to include into it Model Y and Model 3 in Europe and the Middle East.

Tesla said the removal of ultrasonic sensors will begin with Model 3 and Model Y vehicles. They will also be removed from Model S and Model X in 2023.

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