Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) is in the spotlight once again following a car crash involving one of its models in China.
A Chinese citizen known as Luo Zhen reported that his Tesla Model S hit a vehicle that was parked on the side of the road while it was on autopilot. Zhen was on one of the highways in Beijing and the Autopilot feature was activated on his car. However, it failed to detect the car that was parked on the side of the road with part of it on the road. Zhen complained that the company overplayed some of the vehicle’s abilities when he was buying the vehicle.
Tesla defended itself claiming that the driver failed to use the Autopilot system the right way. The firm claims that it took a close look at the data to confirm that vehicle was in Autopilot mode at the time of the incident. The system assumes control over the brakes and the steering under various conditions. Tesla claims that the driver has responsibility and is supposed to control the vehicle and that the vehicle did not detect the hands of the Chinese driver. The driver, however, reported that he has been using Autopilot on Beijing roads every time he goes to work. Zhen’s accident is the first recorded Tesla crash in China.
The accident was reported a few months after a fatal accident involving a Tesla vehicle in Florida which raised a lot of criticism against the company and just how dangerous the Autopilot system might be. Regulators launched investigations on the company following the Florida accident and the latest report is only expected to add fuel to the probes.
Fortunately for Luo, the accident did not result in any injuries though it caused some damages to the two vehicles involved. The owner of the Tesla Model S believes that the crash was the result of a fault in the Autopilot system though Tesla will not have any of that.