Tesla faces criminal probe in the United States over self-driving electric vehicle claims: Report
Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla Inc, electric vehicle automaker once described the Tesla's autopilot as “probably better” than a human driver.
As per a recent report published on Reuters, Tesla Inc is facing a criminal investigation in the United States over self driving claims over the company's electric vehicles. As per the available data, the U.S. Department of Justice is probing the world's most valuable automaker for the claims that the company's EVs can drive themselves. More than a dozen Tesla EVs were involved in crashes in 2021 alone, some of them fatal. Most of these cars were running on the Tesla’s driver assistance system Autopilot, which was activated during the accidents.
Elon Musk, the CEO of Silicon Valley automaker once described the Tesla's autopilot as “probably better” than a human driver. Tesla has been rolling out upgraded version of “Full Self-Driving” software allowing customers to travel “to your work, your friend’s house, to the grocery store without you touching the wheel.”
A video currently on the company’s website says: “The person in the driver’s seat is only there for legal reasons. He is not doing anything. The car is driving itself.” Despite all these tall claims, the automaker also has explicitly warned drivers that they must keep their hands on the wheel and maintain control of their vehicles while using Autopilot.
An autonomous vehicle is designed to assist the car with steering, braking, speed and lane changes depending on the level of autonomy. As part of the latest probe, prosecutors are examining whether Tesla misled consumers, investors and regulators.
Previous Tesla probes
August 2021: U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened an investigation into a series of crashes, involving Teslas equipped with Autopilot.
July 2022: California Department of Motor Vehicles accused Tesla of falsely advertising its Autopilot and Full Self-Driving capability.