Tesla may face criminal probe over autonomous drive claims: Report

Tesla is in deeper trouble over its self-drive technology than what may have previously been known. A recent Reuters report has highlighted how Tesla is under criminal investigation in the US after the country's Department of Justice launched a probe in the aftermath of numerous crashes and accidents.

By: HT Auto Desk
| Updated on: 27 Oct 2022, 11:58 AM
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File photo of a crashed Tesla Model 3 that was being driven at around 113 kmph. (Image: Youtube/TheColumbusDispatch)
File photo of a crashed Tesla Model 3 that was being driven at around 113 kmph. (Image: Youtube/TheColumbusDispatch)
File photo of a crashed Tesla Model 3 that was being driven at around 113 kmph. (Image: Youtube/TheColumbusDispatch)
File photo of a crashed Tesla Model 3 that was being driven at around 113 kmph. (Image: Youtube/TheColumbusDispatch)

Tesla has been under the glare over some of its vehicles being involved in accidents, possibly due to the FSD or Full Self-Drive technology being made use of. Some of these accidents have even turned fatal. And while CEO Elon Musk remains confident of autonomous technology in personal mobility vehicles, authorities have not yet given a clear passage for legal and mass use.

Also Read : Tesla vs Chinese EV makers in epic battle in world's largest car market

Tesla continues to back its autonomous drive technology, also called AutoPilot, but also urges the person behind the wheel to keep hands on the steering and pay attention to surroundings at all times. This despite Musk claiming that the technology is better - and safer - than human driving because it negates chances of human errors. But a spate of accidents involving Tesla EVs have hardly backed this claim.

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So even though Musk has gone on record to say that accidents are happening because of drivers ignoring clear instructions from Tesla, the onus may be on the EV giant to ensure complete safety in every scenario. The US Department of Justice probe launched last year is one of many such investigations that are already under way but also one that could possibly bring in criminal charges against the company. Did Tesla mislead customers? Is Tesla guilty of exaggerating what the technology is capable of? These are just some of the questions that are now being looked into.

Tesla was looking at getting a go ahead from safety regulators in the country for its AutoPilot technology by the end of this year but Musk has already gone on record to say that's not happening any time soon.

First Published Date: 27 Oct 2022, 11:55 AM IST
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