Tesla Faces Federal Scrutiny for Claiming Cars can Safety Drive Themselves
By Yehudit Garmiase
Customers who have bought cars that promise “Autopilot” are still required to keep their hands on the wheel, as crashes involving “self-driving” Teslas have piled up.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk was so confident in his ability to provide self-driving cars that in 2019, he said he would be ready to run a “robo-taxi service” comprised of 1 million self-driving cars within a year, but now Tesla faces scrutiny from the US Justice Department, which is investigating the car company’s claims that some of its models provide Fully Self-Driving (FSD) modes.
When the US National Traffic Safety Administration (USNTSA) recently ordered automakers to regularly report collisions that involve automated-driving systems, cars made by Tesla, the main supplier of self-driving modes, accounted for the vast majority of the accidents, Bloomberg reported.
Now the NHTSA, which said it cannot yet draw conclusions, is conducting two investigations into possible Autopilot and FSD defects.
In addition, another government agency, the US Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating Musk’s role in shaping the company’s self-driving claims.
“We have experienced, and we expect to continue to face, claims and regulatory scrutiny arising from or related to misuse or claimed failures or alleged misrepresentations of such new technologies that we are pioneering,” said Tesla, which confirmed the US Department of Justice has requested documents about the car company’s claims that its self-driving models are safe.