US Department of Justice launches investigation into Tesla
The US Department of Justice launched an investigation into Tesla after a series of accidents involving the company’s electric vehicles with autopilot turned on, which, among other things, led to casualties. Reuters was told about this by three informed sources.
The reason for the proceedings were claims that Tesla cars are capable of driving on their own, Reuters sources say. The ministry is investigating whether the company misled buyers, investors and regulators with unsubstantiated claims about autopilot capabilities, the agency’s sources said. The result of the audit may be a criminal case, administrative liability or closure of the case without any sanctions.
Since at least 2016, Tesla’s marketing materials have emphasized the capabilities of autopilot, with CEO Elon Musk saying that Tesla’s autopilot is “probably better” than a human driver. Moreover, Musk said in October 2022 that while Tesla cars cannot drive without a person at the wheel, the driver will practically not have to touch the steering wheel with the next update of the autopilot, the agency wrote.