How Many Cameras Do Teslas Have? Models Compared

Do you feel safe when driving on Autopilot? Well you should, because the integrated camera system can see way more than you can with your two eyes. But just how much does a Tesla actually see? How many cameras does a Tesla need?

Teslas have eight exterior cameras and one interior camera. The interior cabin cameras are currently only available for Model 3 and Y vehicles equipped with Tesla Vision. All Teslas in current production have the same number of cameras. Combined they provide 360-degree visibility at up to 273 yards.

To get an in-depth view of this topic, check out the rest of this article. Tesla has come a long way since the original roadster.

Number of Cars on Older Tesla Models

ModelNo. of Cameras
2009 Roadster sports car1 camera
2012 Model S Sedan1 camera
2016 Model X SUV1 camera
This table shows the number of cameras on older Tesla models. 

Tesla made its first foray into the EV space with the Roadster in 2019, followed by the Model S sedan and the Model X SUV in 2012 and 2015, respectively. All of these vehicles featured only one camera, typically a rearview camera. 

The integrated camera was primarily a driver assistance feature designed to enhance safety for the initial Tesla models. The first generation Autopilot used only one front-facing camera. It was not until the second generation of Autopilot that Tesla transitioned to an 8-camera suite.

Number of Cameras on Current Tesla Models

ModelNo. of Cameras
Tesla Model 38
Tesla Model S8
Tesla Model X8
Tesla Model Y8
This table shows the number of cameras on current Tesla models

Tesla transitioned from the one-camera suite to the eight-camera configuration in 2018. Currently, each new Tesla features eight external cameras and 12 ultrasonic sensors to bolster safety while also supporting the vehicle’s autopilot features, which have improved tremendously since 2009. 

In some select Model 3’s and Y’s (with the Tesla Vision feature), an additional cabin camera is intended to determine whether the driver is alert for added safety.

In Sentry mode, these cameras work in tandem to create a kind of rolling 360-degree surveillance system for your car, as summarized in the YouTube video below.

Random Stat:

The company has greatly increased production since the upgrade from a singular camera to the eight-camera system in October 2016. In 2020 alone, the electric car maker manufactured over 930,000 new units, an increase of 82.5% from the previous year. However, Tesla only produced just 48,000 units in 2017 and roughly 197,000 units in 2018. 

On a somewhat related note, check out this article that I wrote called: “Do Tesla Cameras Record All the Time?” I also discuss the number of cameras in respective locations together with their uses.

Number of Cameras on Future Tesla Models

ModelNo. of Cameras
Tesla CybertruckMore than 8
Tesla Semi10
This table show the number of cameras on Tesla future models. 

The Tesla Cybertruck will have more than eight cameras to support its self-driving capabilities. Because the unit will not have side mirrors fitted, it will have cameras in their place. 

There is limited information on just how many cameras this unit will have, but the consensus is that there will be more than eight.

For the Tesla Semi truck, things get a little exciting. There were numerous reports from 2018 onwards that the Tesla Semi would feature a whopping 26 cameras. At least this is the number of cameras rumored to be on the prototype.

However, more recent news suggest that the unit will feature only 10 cameras. This is corroborated by the video below. 

By all indications, it would be a safe bet to expect even more cameras, or at least much-improved camera configurations moving into the future. Who knows. Maybe, the entire vehicle’s body might, in the end, be a network of cameras at this pace. 

Random Fun Fact:

Although Tesla announced that all its new vehicles would have an eight-camera setup to promote self-driving capabilities in 2016, only one camera was initially used out of eight during the beta stages. While Tesla’s self-driving capability has grown tremendously, the company continues to upgrade its radars and camera to optimize this technology.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Tesla See Inside My Vehicle via the Cabin Camera or Dash Cam?

Tesla cannot see inside your vehicle with cabin cameras. Images and video data from these cameras are processed within the vehicle, so Tesla cannot look inside your vehicle via the cameras. 

What Happens to the Data Captured by the Eight Cameras?

Video data captured by Tesla cameras is stored locally. Tesla uses driver data to enhance the self-driving, but as a dedication to privacy, Tesla does not collect or share any recordings or videos.

Check out these 20 great gift ideas for yourself or a Tesla fanboy.

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How Many Cameras Do Teslas Have? Models Compared 1
Erwin Meyer
Erwin Meyer

A renowned Tesla enthusiast, and successful entrepreneur, enlightens global audiences through his compelling EV narratives. Discover more about his electric journey on his About Me page. Venture to read Erwin's incredible story that's reshaping the future of motoring. Want to spark a conversation with Erwin? Visit his Contact page, and let’s electrify the world together.