How Will Strides in Autonomous Car Tech Affect Tesla Motors?

By Markets Fool.com

Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) has been somewhat of a market leader in the self-driving car space for the past few years.

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In this segment from theIndustry Focuspodcast,Sean O'Reilly and John Rosevear talk about how and Mobileye (NYSE: MBLY) and Delphi's(NYSE: DLPH) plans to make self-driving car tech available to companies by 2019 will affect Tesla's first mover advantage.

A full transcript follows the video.

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This podcast was recorded on Aug. 25, 2016.

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Sean O'Reilly: I'm sure the question on all the listeners' minds is -- and I'm fully aware that the argument could be made that, in the baseball game of driverless cars, we just had the first pitches. But Tesla's kind of been the leader with this. They've had autopilot on the road for about a year now. Does this take away Tesla's advantage or thunder? Because they came out and said, "Oh, we have the fastest car ever in production now." Does this steal any of Tesla's thunder?

John Rosevear:If you talk to people at other automakers that are deep into self-driving development, they will tell you, it's not so much that Tesla's so far ahead. It's that they released their system early.

O'Reilly:And we talked about that on another show. They were like, "I can't believe Musk is doing this."

Rosevear:Right.Mercedes-Benz dropped a system -- in 2014 they launched a system that had very limited highway autonomy. That was really the first thing that's like a self-driving car. Tesla's wasa step past that. It came out several months later. Of course, they've had the mixed results in the market, and now regulators coming in and saying, "Maybe it's not good to have a system that expects the human to take over under certain circumstances. Maybe we need to more clearly define it, the thing of handing control back from the system to the human." That's where Tesla's system is a little ragged, and where some of the other automakers are saying, "We're not even going to mess around with that. We're going to these level four systems that are fully self-driving or they're not, or they're off, period."

John Rosevear has no position in any stocks mentioned. Sean O'Reilly has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Tesla Motors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.