Tesla Reportedly Ordered by German Court to Reimburse Customer for Autopilot Issues

Tesla lawyers argued that Autopilot was not designed for city traffic, according to a report.

Tesla Reportedly Ordered by German Court to Reimburse Customer for Autopilot Issues

Photo Credit: Reuters

A technical report showed the vehicle did not reliably recognise obstacles

Highlights
  • Tesla lawyers argued Autopilot was not designed for city traffic
  • US safety regulators are investigating Tesla's Autopilot function
  • Tesla is likely to launch a test version of 'Full Self-Driving' software

A Munich court has ordered Tesla to reimburse a customer for most of the EUR 112,000 (roughly Rs. 90,00,000) she paid for a Model X SUV because of problems with the Autopilot function, Der Spiegel reported on Friday.

A technical report showed the vehicle did not reliably recognise obstacles like the narrowing of a construction site and would at times activate the brakes unnecessarily.

This could cause a "massive hazard" in city centres and lead to collisions, the court ruled.

Tesla lawyers argued Autopilot was not designed for city traffic, according to Der Spiegel, to which the court said it was not feasible for drivers to switch the feature on and off manually in different settings as it would distract from driving.

Tesla was not immediately available for comment and declined to comment to Der Spiegel. The court was not immediately available for comment.

US safety regulators are investigating Tesla's Autopilot function after reports of 16 crashes, including seven injury incidents and one death, involving Tesla vehicles in Autopilot that had struck stationary first-responder and road maintenance vehicles.

Tesla says Autopilot allows vehicles to brake and steer automatically within their lanes but does not make them capable of driving themselves.

Musk said in March that Tesla is likely to launch a test version of its new "Full Self-Driving" software in Europe later this year, depending on regulatory approval.

"It's quite difficult to do full self-driving in Europe," he told workers at the Berlin factory at the time, saying much work needs to be done to handle tricky driving situations in Europe where roads vary a lot by country.

© Thomson Reuters 2022


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