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Elon Musk: Production Of Robotaxis In 2024

In the latest Tesla Q1 2022 Financial Results and Q&A Webcast, Elon Musk states that the Tesla RoboTaxi will enter full production in 2024:

"A new vehicle, which I alluded to at the GigaTexas opening, a dedicated robotaxi, that is an optimized for autonomy, that it would not have a steering wheel or pedals, and there are a number of other innovations around it that I think are quite exciting but it's fundamentally optimized for trying to achieve the lowest cost per mile, cost per kilometer, counting everything. And so I think it will be a powerful product where we aspire to reach volume production of that in 2024. I think that will be a massive driver of Tesla's growth.

As far as I know, the first description of an autonomous vehicle with no steering wheel is found in The Living Machine, a 1935 story by David H. Keller:

"I want to show you something new in the way of an automobile." "Nothing new about this," laughed Babson, scornfully. "One of our best and most familiar models."

"How about the steering wheel?"

"Where is it?"

"I do not need one. Sit down and make yourself comfortable. Now watch me. We are going into traffic..."

Update 08-Feb-2024: I've found an earlier reference for a first description of an autonomous vehicle with no steering wheel from Paradise and Iron by Miles Breuer, published in Amazing Stories Quarterly in 1930:

The car had no steering wheel, and no one drove! Ames tinkered around with something on the instrument board when he got in; and in a few moments we were off.

End update.

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'...the bug-eyed, opaque gape of her True-Vu lenses.'

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'...some bored drone pusher in a remote driving centre has got your life... in his hands.'

Will Whales Be Our First Contact?
'He had piloted the Adastra to its first contact with the civilization of another solar system.'

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'Well, that's us,' said Lazarus.

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