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Tesla Model S prototype with Velodyne Lidar sensor spotted in Palo Alto


Another Tesla Model S prototype with lidar sensor was spotted in Palo Alto today. It follows a recent sighting of another Tesla vehicle with a lidar sensor, though the lidar tower, from Velodyne, is different this time. 

Both sightings were in Palo Alto near Tesla’s headquarters and both vehicles have manufacturer license plates.

Lidar sensors are most often used for self-driving car prototypes, but Tesla is on the record saying that it doesn’t think the sensor is necessary for reaching a fully autonomous system nor does it plan to use for its Autopilot program.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk reiterated just a few weeks ago that the automaker “does not anticipate using lidar”:

As previously speculated with the other sightings, Tesla could be benchmarking a lidar system against its own hardware suite, which utilizes radar and cameras.

Here’s the roof rack with the Velodyne sensor on the Model S prototype:


The video of the sighting was posted to Youtube today:

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