Elon Musk’s Tesla faces a class action suit accusing it of misleading people by falsely advertising its Autopilot and Full Self-Driving features.
The plaintiff Briggs Matsko accused Tesla and Musk of deceptively advertising the technology as fully functioning or “just around the corner.”
He claims that since 2016 the electric carmaker has misled people while knowing that the technology did not operate or was nonexistent, which made its vehicles unsafe.
Matsko argues that Tesla did this to “generate excitement” about its vehicles, attract investments, increase sales, and avert bankruptcy.
He added it was also to boost its stock price and become a “dominant player” in electric vehicles.
He said: “Tesla has yet to produce anything even remotely approaching a fully self-driving car.”
The complaint was filed in San Francisco federal court.
It seeks unspecified damages for those who purchased or leased Tesla vehicles with Autopilot, Enhanced Autopilot, or Full Self-Driving technologies since 2016.
Tesla did not reply quickly to requests for comment.
The lawsuit was launched in response to allegations made by California’s Department of Motor Vehicles on July 28.
It accused Tesla of exaggerating the effectiveness of its advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS).
Remedies could include suspension of Tesla’s license in California and requiring restitution to drivers.
Tesla has said Autopilot allows vehicles to steer, accelerate, and brake within their lanes, whereas Full Self-Driving enables vehicles to obey traffic signals and change lanes.
It has also said both technologies “require active driver supervision,” with a “fully attentive” driver whose hands are on the wheel, “and do not make the vehicle autonomous.”
Matsko, of Rancho Murieta, California, claimed he paid a $5,000 premium for Enhanced Autopilot on his 2018 Tesla Model X.
Source: New York Post