German court agrees that some descriptive material can be misleading.
This is not the first time Autopilot draws criticism.
Tesla’s Autopilot semi-autonomous driving technology has featured prominently in much of the company’s recent evolution. Despite Tesla indicating that Autopilot is not a fully-autonomous driving system, a German court has banned them from using certain words when advertising the product.
Germany’s Wettbewerbszentrale, or the country’s Center for Protection Against Unfair Competition, filed a lawsuit against Tesla in June stating that Tesla was boasting a product and service that they did not actually provide.
According to Reuters, the Munich court agreed with the Center and has henceforth banned Tesla Germany from using “full potential for autonomous driving” and “Autopilot inclusive” in its German advertising materials.
Reports about Autopilot technology “failing” have been numerous over the last few years where a number of accidents have occurred, some being fatal. The German court has upheld the claim that the product’s description is misleading and can lead consumers to believe that Autopilot is a fully-autonomous system, which it is not.
Tesla Autopilot was literally named after the term used in aviation. Also, what about Autobahn!?
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 14, 2020
Elon Musk tweeted following the ruling saying simply that Autopilot is the exact term used in aviation, where there are always two pilots present, despite the technology.
All of this comes less than a week after Musk said that Tesla was only months away from achieving Level 5 full-autonomous driving technology. If you take the time to look over the entire Autopilot section on Tesla’s website, the fact that it is not a fully-autonomous driving technology is indicated, but many could understandably think otherwise.