Tesla’s Autopilot vs Enhanced Autopilot: What’s the Difference?

The Autopilot lineup has been changed several times over the years by Tesla to simplify its offerings and distinguish between basic driver assistance and autonomous driving functions.

Due to this, Autopilot and Enhanced Autopilot were defined differently along the way. When you’re considering a previously owned Tesla, it can be confusing to make sense of the Autopilot options.

What Is Autopilot?

Tesla’s Autopilot vs Enhanced Autopilot

Tesla vehicles come standard with Autopilot, a driver assistance software package. When the autosteer feature is activated, the Tesla will stay in a clearly marked lane, and the autosteer can only be engaged at a reasonable speed when using cruise control.

The autosteer disengages after pressing the brake. Alternatively, Traffic-Aware Cruise Control adjusts the Tesla’s speed based on traffic around it. 

I haven’t tried the Autosteer in the rain or snow yet, but it has been reliable in both conditions. In all honesty, I’ve never seen my Tesla leave its lane since I bought it and it drives much better than I do. While traffic-aware cruise control has been successful, some people complain that it is too cautious. 

I dislike Autopilot for two reasons. Firstly, it dislikes the division of one-lane highways into two lanes, with the left lane used for passing and the right lane used for cars not passing.

Keep you on the right lane by disengaging autosteer, adjusting lanes, and reengaging autosteer. This frustration would be greatly appreciated if Tesla addressed it. 

Secondly, Autopilot’s software artificially limits the driver’s cruising speed on some single-lane highways to 10km/h over the speed limit.

This kind of limitation is extremely frustrating. If drivers pay attention to the road and are responsible for their own actions, Tesla shouldn’t impose some arbitrary limit. 

Model 3s did not come with autopilot out of the box. Autopilot has not been included with Tesla’s Model 3s since April 2019. If you purchased a Model 3 after April 2019, Autopilot probably already was installed and you may even have used it. A Model 3 purchased before April 2019 requires this upgrade for $4000. 

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Original Autopilot Option Lineup

Previously, there were three levels of Autopilot:

Standard’ Autopilot

  • Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) was essentially active safety

Enhanced Autopilot

  • It offered auto steering along with distance cruise-control, summoning, autoparking and navigation.

Full Self-Driving

  • As a prepaid option, Full Self-Driving was supposed to be fully autonomous Level 5 driving (what does that mean?).

Tesla removed the Full Self-Driving prepaid option because it never materialized and only added confusion. As Tesla added more and more autonomous features to its Enhanced Autopilot tier, the word “Full Self-Driving” became muddy and left everyone wondering what it really meant and when it will be released.

With the Autopilot lineup changes in 2019, Tesla clarified the differences between Autopilot and Full-Self Driving, an autonomous driving feature that falls into the Autopilot category. With every Tesla sold, active safety features were no longer branded and included as standard.

The 2019 To 2022 Autopilot Lineup

Early in 2019, Tesla removed “Enhanced Autopilot” from its Autopilot options, leaving only “Full Self-Driving” available. Here is the current lineup:


As in most other cars with autopilot today, this is just basic driver assistance. Every vehicle comes with it.

  • Cruise control with traffic awareness. The TACC. It will automatically stop in traffic, follow other cars, and then resume driving.
  • Lane Centering/Automatic Steering. When this is combined with TACC above, the vehicle stays in its lane.

Full Self-Driving

The following features are available at the time of purchase…

  • Automated navigation. A destination can be entered, and the vehicle will completely navigate itself there (currently, this is only available on freeways from on-ramp to exit and with lane change confirmation).
  • The ability to change lanes automatically. With TACC and Automatic Steering, the turn signal can be used to change lanes automatically when it is clear.
  • A summons. This feature allows the vehicle to be summoned to another location near its current location (for example, in a private parking lot).
  • Parking lot. It allows the vehicle to park parallel as well as perpendicular to the road.
  • Recognition of traffic lights and stop signs. Currently alerts you to stop signs and traffic lights (without stopping the vehicle) while on Autopilot.
  • City driving with automatic transmission. A glimpse into the future is offered in Full-Self Driving Beta.

The 2022 To 2024 Autopilot Lineup

The Tesla Autopilot lineup was again changed in June 2022, and “Enhanced Autopilot” was introduced as a cheaper option for access to popular features like Auto Lane Change and Navigate on Autopilot.


Basic driving assistance is included with all vehicles.

  • Cruise control with traffic awareness. 
  • Lane Centering / Automatic Steering.

Enhanced Autopilot

All the items above were included with the Enhanced Autopilot ($6,000)…

  • Automated navigation
  • Changing lanes automatically
  • Send a summons
  • The parking lot

Full Self-Driving

This included everything above as well as…

  • A traffic light recognition system and a stop sign recognition system
  • Driving in the city automatically

The 2024 Autopilot Lineup

Once again, Tesla removed “Enhanced Autopilot” from its Autopilot lineup in April 2024, leaving only standard Autopilot and the option to purchase Full Self-Driving.


Basic driving assistance is included with all vehicles.

  • Cruise control with traffic awareness. 
  • Lane Centering / Automatic Steering.

Full Self-Driving

Upon purchase, the package includes everything above and more for $8,000 (or $99/month).

  • Put your navigation on autopilot
  • Change of lanes automatically
  • Parking garage
  • Smart Summon & Summon
  • Street autosteering in cities
  • Stop signs and traffic lights

How Does Enhanced Autopilot Work?

Does your account still have $7,800 in it? It may be a good idea to consider Enhanced Autopilot! An enhanced Autopilot includes five features: automatic lane change, automatic parking, summoning, and smart summoning.

The Navigate on Autopilot feature takes cruise control Autopilot to the next level by providing the ability to navigate your Tesla from an on-ramp to an off-ramp on a highway, suggest lane changes, turn on your turn signal automatically, navigate interchanges, and find the right exit, among other features.

Navigate on Autopilot worked really well – I believe it would be particularly useful if you were traveling somewhere you were unfamiliar with. 

By setting Auto Lane Change, you can either authorize lane changes or let it adjust lanes automatically. From a conceptual standpoint, Auto Lane Change is an interesting feature. To pass the other car, I had to speed up my Tesla. My Tesla rarely committed to me despite my best efforts. 

In the process of parking your Tesla, the Autopark feature makes a number of minor adjustments, similar to how you would park if you were a first time driver. Autopark is intended to assist with parallel parking, but it only works in parking lots with clearly marked spaces; it does not work in parallel parking.

You can move your Tesla forward or backward using the Tesla app. Summon is a great feature for parking in tight spaces. The $7,800 price tag on Enhanced Autopilot doesn’t seem justified to me.

Lastly, there is Smart Summon. During a complex environment, such as a parking lot, Smart Summon manages the navigation of the Tesla intelligently. In the event that you are finished shopping on a rainy day and would like your vehicle to pick you up, a Tesla Smart Summon would be useful.

I did not find Smart Summon to be successful in my testing. It was impossible for my Tesla to locate me even in an empty parking lot. 

Is Full Self-Driving Possible?

Tesla’s Autopilot vs Enhanced Autopilot

Full Self-Driving (FSD), or Full Autonomous Driving, will allow Tesla’s cars to drive themselves without the need for human intervention in the future. Musk, Tesla’s CEO, has previously called for the FSD to someday appreciate in value. Teslas could operate autonomously as self-driving taxis, earning their owners income when idle. FSD, however, remains far from Elon Musk’s vision.

Currently, the company is being sued for potentially misleading claims.

You can expect to pay $19,500 for full self-driving. You gain beta access to ‘Traffic and Stop Sign Control,’ which automatically slows your Tesla whenever a stop sign or traffic light is approaching. ‘Autosteer on city streets’ will enable the Tesla Model S to navigate on its own in urban environments. 

It is still necessary to use FSD or any of the other features mentioned above while paying attention to the road so that the driver can intervene if necessary. My personal experience with self-driving hasn’t been full, so I include it here for fairness’ sake. Future updates may improve FSD, but I do not have $20,000 lying around to wait. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

What if I already bought Enhanced Autopilot (EAP)?

As of this writing, you should be able to upgrade to FSD for $2,000 if you had previously purchased Enhanced Autopilot on a recent vehicle.

What if I already bought Enhanced Autopilot (EAP), but want to upgrade to Full Self-Driving (FSD)?

The Full Self-Driving (FSD) package was available to customers who bought Enhanced Autopilot (EAP). To ensure that you have the latest pricing, check your app or contact Tesla.

What if I didn’t buy Enhanced Autopilot (EAP) or Full Self-Driving (FSD) previously but want to upgrade?

If you purchased a Tesla prior to March 1, 2019 and would like to upgrade to Autopilot or FSD, you can do so for half the price. I am unsure if this is still available since they previously posted a blog post about it, which has since been removed.

What if I already bought Enhanced Autopilot (EAP) or Full Self-Driving (FSD) previously?

Tesla’s Early Access Program (EAP) will be offered to those customers. It’s unclear whether this is still available based on the blog post that was previously posted about it.

Why is Autopark part of a paid package when most other manufacturers have that standard?

I appreciate you asking! The reason is that this is a convenience feature with more ‘autonomous’ characteristics, but given that every other car manufacturer has it now, we think it deserves to be included in Autopilot.

What about Sentry Mode, Dog Mode and Dashcam?

All Teslas with current hardware come with these, which are not included in Autopilot packages.

Is this really autonomous Full-Self Driving? If not, why did they name it that?

Full Self-Driving (FSD) isn’t actually “full self-driving”; the driver must remain attentive. What was the reason for calling it that? We assume they needed to roll out or refund customers because the FSD tier existed previously and was sold. Also, it enables Tesla to add features that require Hardware 3 (AP3), which is included with the FSD option.


Autopilot’s naming scheme is now much clearer, since the term ‘standard’ Autopilot before didn’t make much sense. As a result, the term “Full Self-Driving” is a bit misleading given that a driver is still required to pay attention (i.e. it’s not really “Full Self-Driving” until the following few years).

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