au·​to·​pi·​lot | \ ˈȯ-tō-ˌpī-lət How to pronounce autopilot (audio) \

Definition of autopilot

1 : a device for automatically steering ships, aircraft, and spacecraft also : the automatic control provided by such a device

Examples of autopilot in a Sentence

an airplane equipped with an autopilot The plane was flying on autopilot.
Recent Examples on the Web There is a ton of evidence that Google often leaves Play Store policing on autopilot. Ron Amadeo, Ars Technica, 22 July 2022 To date, there have been about two dozen deaths associated with Tesla's autopilot feature specifically. Alex Polyakov, Forbes, 15 June 2022 Brooks, at the Center for Auto Safety, said other lawsuits are pending against Tesla involving the vehicle's autopilot and full self-driving systems. Freida Frisaro, ajc, 20 July 2022 Ricky Gervais is on autopilot as Ika Chu, the diabolical Somali cat who wants to perfect the view from his palace by wiping Kakamucho off the map. Thomas Floyd, Washington Post, 13 July 2022 Tens of millions of American workers were largely on autopilot with respect to their jobs when the pandemic hit. Roger Martin, Fortune, 7 July 2022 In recent years, 12 Teslas on autopilot have crashed into emergency vehicles with blinking lights. Brian Platz, Forbes, 30 June 2022 People who fold laundry or lift weights during a Zoom meeting are able to do those tasks more or less on autopilot—which means that they’re not actually distracted from the meeting at hand. Sarah Todd, Quartz, 19 Apr. 2022 The heart of the aircraft was the Hughes MA-1 system, which integrated all navigation, radar, communications, and autopilot functions in a 2,500 pound (1,140 kg) collection of boxes at the front of the aircraft. Frank O’brien, Ars Technica, 4 Jan. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'autopilot.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of autopilot

1916, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for autopilot

Time Traveler

The first known use of autopilot was in 1916

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Last Updated

6 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Autopilot.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Aug. 2022.

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