Greater than 750 Tesla house owners have complained to US security regulators that automobiles working on the automaker’s partially automated driving methods have immediately stopped on roadways for no obvious motive.
The Nationwide Freeway Site visitors Security Administration revealed the quantity in an in depth data request letter to Tesla that was posted Friday on the company’s web site.
The 14-page letter dated Could 4 asks the automaker for all shopper and subject studies it has obtained about false braking, in addition to studies of crashes, accidents, deaths and property injury claims. It additionally asks whether or not the corporate’s “Full Self Driving” and automated emergency braking methods have been energetic on the time of any incident.
The agency began investigating phantom braking in Tesla’s Fashions 3 and Y final February after getting 354 complaints. The probe covers an estimated 416,000 automobiles from the 2021 and 2022 mannequin years. In February, the company stated it had no studies of crashes or accidents.
The letter provides Tesla a deadline of June 20 to answer the data request however says the corporate can ask for an extension.
Shares of Tesla tumbled 8% in noon buying and selling.
A message was left early Friday searching for remark from Tesla.
In opening the probe, the company stated it was trying into automobiles outfitted with automated driver-assist options comparable to adaptive cruise management and “Autopilot,” which permits them to routinely brake and steer inside their lanes.
“Complainants report that the fast deceleration can happen with out warning, and infrequently repeatedly throughout a single drive cycle,” the company stated.
Many homeowners wrote of their complaints that they feared a rear-end crash on a freeway.
Within the letter, NHTSA asks for the preliminary pace of when the automobiles started to brake, the ultimate pace, and the typical deceleration. It additionally asks if the automated methods detected a goal impediment, and whether or not Tesla has video of the braking incidents.
The company is now searching for data on guarantee claims for phantom braking together with the house owners’ names and what repairs have been made. It’s additionally searching for data on Tesla’s sensors, any testing or investigations into the braking issues, or if any modifications have been made.
The letter focuses on Tesla’s testing of the automated methods relating to detecting steel bridges, s-shaped curves, oncoming and cross site visitors, and totally different sizes of automobiles together with massive vehicles. The company additionally needs data on how cameras cope with reflections, shadows, glare and blockage resulting from snow or heavy rain.
The company asks Tesla to element its evaluation of the “alleged defect” within the automated methods, together with what precipitated the pointless braking, what failed, and the chance to motorized vehicle security that the issue poses. It asks Tesla “what warnings, if any, the operator and the opposite individuals each inside and out of doors the car would have that the alleged defect was occurring, or topic element was malfunctioning.”
The probe is one other in a string of enforcement efforts by the company that embody Autopilot and “Full Self-Driving” software program. Regardless of their names, neither characteristic can drive the automobiles with out folks supervising.
It’s the fourth formal investigation of the Texas automaker up to now three years, and NHTSA is supervising 23 Tesla remembers since January 2021.