Tesla Owners Filed a Lawsuit Saying the New Autopilot Is ‘Demonstrably Dangerous’

April 20, 2017, 1:42 PM UTC

Tesla owners filed a class-action lawsuit against the automaker for allegedly mischaracterizing the capabilities of its Autopilot 2 feature to consumers.

The lawsuit, filed by law firm Hagens Berman on Wednesday in California’s Northern district court, said Tesla’s partial autopilot technology was advertised as safe and “stress-free,” but instead “is essentially unusable and demonstrably dangerous.”

“Unwittingly, buyers of the affected vehicles have become beta testers of half-baked software that renders Tesla vehicles dangerous if engaged,” the lawsuit says.

Tesla cars with the Autopilot 2 features were first sold in October 2016. The first generation of the system was first unveiled in 2014. The Autopilot 2, or Enhanced Autopilot, feature costs consumers $5,000.

“What consumers received were cars without standard safety enhancements featured by cars costing less than half the price of a new Tesla, and a purported ‘Enhanced Autopilot’ that operates in an erratic and dangerous manner,”Steve Berman, managing partner of Hagens Berman, said in a statement.

Tesla told Business Insider the lawsuit is a “disingenuous attempt to secure attorney’s fee posing as legitimate legal action.” The company said the lawsuit “misrepresents many facts.”

“The inaccurate and sensationalistic view of our technology put forth by this group is exactly the kind of misinformation that threatens to harm consumer safety,” Tesla said.