The California DMV has accused Tesla in two separate filings of the use of deceptive marketing practices. Specifically, the company has been using terms such as “autopilot” and “full-self driving capability” to describe their ADAS-equipped EVs. However, these vehicles do not have the ability to drive autonomously. Consumer misinterpretations could lead to dangerous consequences for drivers.
Deputy Director for the Office of Public Affairs, Anita Gore, released a statement that the filings are only pertaining to the marketing practices currently. There will be an additional investigation into the design and technological features of the EVs to determine if permits should be required before use of them on public roadways.
This technology is featured in all Teslas and even sells a premium “full self-driving” option for an additional charge. The company has some EV owners participate in their FSD program. Over 100,000 drivers are allowed to test some unfinished self-driving technology on the roads while being highly monitored by Tesla.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration requires self-assist automakers to report any collisions. While Tesla comprises the majority of crashes from 2021 to 2022, data still does not suggest whether or not Tesla’s technology is considered unsafe. The NHTSA has opened an investigation to determine whether or not the company’s software is defective and warrants a recall.
Tesla has only 15 days to respond to the filings, and failure to do so will result in a complete restriction of the company’s manufacturing and dealership privileges for California.
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