Tesla and Elon Musk knew that Autopilot was faulty. The judge made this decision

Previously, the company won two cases

A Florida judge found “reasonable evidence” that Tesla CEO Elon Musk and company executives knew that the so-called advanced driver assistance system (Autopilot) was faulty.

Judge Reed Scott in Palm Beach County Circuit Court ruled last week that a plaintiff in a fatal Tesla Model 3 crash lawsuit can sue the electric vehicle maker for punitive damages for intentional damages, misconduct and gross negligence. .

The lawsuit stems from a 2019 crash north of Miami in which a Tesla Model 3 drove under the trailer of an 18-wheeler truck that had veered onto the road. This led to the death of Stephen Banner, the owner of the electric car.

Tesla and Elon Musk
Tesla and Elon Musk

Tesla and Elon Musk knew that Autopilot was faulty. The judge made this decision

“It would be reasonable to conclude that Defendant Tesla, through its CEO and engineers, was well aware of the problem that Autopilot was unable to detect cross traffic,” the judge said.

Scott cited a Tesla promotional video released in 2016 that showed one of its electric vehicles driving without human intervention. At the beginning of the video there is a disclaimer: “The driver is present for legal reasons only. He does not do anything. The car drives itself.”

The video the judge is referring to was part of another court case in which Ashok Elluswamy, director of Tesla Autopilot Software, said the commercial was staged and that the system did not have the capabilities shown at the time.

The company previously won two product liability cases in California over the Autopilot system.

Leave a Comment