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California banned Tesla from calling its software Full Self-Driving (FSD)

Wednesday, December 28, 2022

California has banned Tesla from calling its software Full Self-Driving (FSD), Teslarati reports(Opens in a new window), as legislators said its name could lead a “reasonable person” to believe the feature allows a car to become fully autonomous.

The legislation, which takes effect in 2023, comes in spite of Tesla stating that FSD does not enable a car to become autonomous. FSD is sold as an additional feature for $15,000 or $199 a month. The feature is updated over the air.

The law, sponsored by Democratic State Sen. Lena Gonzalez, bans California car dealers and manufacturers from “deceptively naming or marketing” a car as self-driving if equipped with partial autonomous features that still require humans to pay attention and handle the driving.

A statement on Tesla’s website regarding the feature reads: “The currently enabled Autopilot, Enhanced Autopilot, and Full Self-Driving features require active driver supervision and do not make the vehicle autonomous. Full autonomy will be dependent on achieving reliability far in excess of human drivers as demonstrated by billions of miles of experience, as well as regulatory approval, which may take longer in some jurisdictions.”

In 2017, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said he planned for a self-driving Tesla to be capable of a cross-country demo drive without the need for human assistance before 2018(Opens in a new window), but this has not been achieved thus far. In October, Musk teased a "wide release" for FSD by year's end.

Last week, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) initiated two more special crash investigations(Opens in a new window) into Tesla accidents where FSD is alleged to have been a factor in the crash.

One of the crashes involved a Tesla Model S driver who was using FSD when the car started moving erratically, leading to an eight-car pileup on the San Francisco Bay Bridge, CNN reported(Opens in a new window).

Meanwhile, Tesla is facing a class-action lawsuit that accuses the electric car maker of misleading the public by falsely advertising its Autopilot and FSD features.

The complaint, filed in September in the US District Court Northern District of California, alleges that Tesla and Elon Musk, have deceived drivers since 2016, when it pledged to equip all cars with self-driving technology.

By: DocMemory
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