The automotive industry is going through an innovation shift where manufacturers are trying to achieve new heights of technological and design innovations every day to lure customers. Tesla Motors, Inc. is an American automotive company which is well renowned in the market for manufacturing luxury electric vehicles. Tesla is swiftly pioneering in the automotive industry leveraging information and technology systems (IT/IS) with a combination of highly intelligent hardware and software system (Newcomb, 2015, para. 3). The technology and IS integrated in the Tesla cars permit Over-the-Air (OTA) software updates and Autopilot features. OTA was first launched in Tesla cars in 2012 with Model S (Newcomb, 2015, para. 3). Since the adoption of “OTA software update” technology in tesla cars, it has created a competitive advantage for the company over other well established automotive manufacturers including BMW, GMC, Ford and others who are still trying to develop and integrate the OTA technology in their cars (Zhang, 2016, para. 2).
This paper analyzes implementation of hands-free and feet-free travel experience also called Autopilot feature in Tesla cars powered by Over-the-Air IS technology. First, this paper describes a brief background of Tesla Motors Inc., current information system trends and their requirements in automotive industry, and Tesla’s competitors. Second, the paper analyzes OTA technology used to push firmware updates, support autopilot, and its influence on automotive industry. Third, the paper presents tesla’s competitive environment in automotive industry, its trading partners, and how tesla is leveraging OTA for sustainable competitive advantage. Next, the paper analyzes economic feasibility to implement autopilot supported by OTA in all models, compares best case, worst case, most likely case and its value towards the success of the company. Lastly, the paper explains organizational implementation of self-driving cars powered by OTA at a large scale.