The owner’s complaint come from the Autopilot system, which is apparently incompatible with his car’s hardware
The court forced the automaker to take the car back and refund 69,000 euros to the owner
Tesla appealed the decision
The owner of a Tesla Model 3 in Germany complained about the poor performance of the Autopilot system in his car, which didn’t work as advertised according to him. Evidently, the German court agreed with him, since its verdict forced Tesla to take back the vehicle and refund the full price.
The false advertising claim comes from the fact that Tesla sells driver assistance systems that are not currently available and it gives them names that make them appear more capable than they actually are.
This complaint has been leveled at Tesla many times before since many people expect a system called Autopilot or Full Self-Driving to be able to take complete control of the vehicle, while they actually require constant driver supervision.
The latter of the two systems is currently not available in Europe and it is only being rolled out in the US in an incomplete form to owners of Tesla vehicles who have bought the option (which now costs $12,000 USD) and have achieved a perfect safety score.
Since Tesla has been promising the system for a long time, many people who sprung for it a couple of years ago and who haven’t been able to use it yet are complaining that they have been lied to.
In the case of the German owner, the problem concerns the standard Autopilot, which he said came with a 6,300-euro software package that is incompatible with the hardware installed on his vehicle, thus making many of the system’s features inoperable, such as the automatic overtaking feature. In addition, the owner says the system drives like a “drunk novice driver”.
The German court ruled in favor of the owner and ordered Tesla to refund the full price he paid; however, the company appealed the decision.
If the ruling is not reversed, this could open the door to claims from many more disgruntled owners who feel they have been ripped-off by Tesla.