Tesla, because it recalled 360,000 self-driving cars

Tesla, because it recalled 360,000 self-driving cars


After years of selling its controversial full-self driving for thousands of dollars, on February 16 Tesla decided to recall the approximately 363,000 vehicles in the United States that use the update to the company's assisted driving software. The measure came after a government agency in the country said that in “rare circumstances” the software has endangered drivers and could increase the risk of crashes in everyday situations.

Recalls are common in the automotive industry and mostly concern particular components or road situations. Tesla's latest recall stands out for its reach. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the US Department of Transportation's traffic safety agency, has stated that fully self-driving software can violate local traffic laws and behave unexpectedly in a variety of road situations.

The reasons for the recall

According to the documentation presented by the agency, potential offenses include transit in the presence of a yellow traffic light that is about to turn red, stopping incorrect at a stop sign, speeding due to missing a traffic sign or having the driver set the car to a pre-set speed, and unexpectedly changing lanes to exit the pre-selection lanes during crossing an intersection.

The situations highlighted by the recall seem to be united by a design flaw which, according to some safety experts, has long been At the heart of Tesla's driver assistance technology is the idea that drivers can delegate driving to the software, and then be ready to step in suddenly when the technology needs help.

But humans don't work that way, points out Philip Koopman, an associate professor at Carnegie Mellon University who studies the safety of self-driving cars. “It's a problem with this technology: the reaction time to avoid these situations is short, and people can't do it properly if they're trained to think the car is doing the right thing,” Koopman explains. Tesla's cars are designed to beep when they determine that the human driver should take control of the vehicle.

According to Koopman, the recall demonstrates that the US government is "testing the waters" around the the possibility of imposing stricter limits, not only on Tesla's ambitious technology but also on the advanced driver assistance functions of other automakers. These systems are designed to make driving more fun, less boring, and safer, but they also require manufacturers to make complicated decisions about the limits of human attention and how to market and illustrate their technology's capabilities.

Tesla's approach is unique in the industry. Under the leadership of its CEO, Elon Musk, the company has resisted government scrutiny, criticized US authorities, and in some cases built its technology too fast for regulators to keep up. “It's an interesting exercise for the NHTSA, which is trying to figure out how to use its authority with Tesla,” comments Koopman.

A statement provided by NHTSA spokeswoman Lucia Sanchez said the agency identified the issues cited in the recall based on analysis conducted as part of an investigation opened in 2022, seeking to establish why vehicles using Tesla's Autopilot feature were involved in collisions with emergency response vehicles stop .

NHTSA documentation shows that Tesla did not agree with the agency's analysis, but agreed to proceed with the recall anyway. The software flaws will be fixed with an over-the-air update "in the coming weeks," the agency reports, meaning drivers won't have to take their vehicles in for service. Tesla didn't respond to a US sportsgaming.win request for comment, and it's unclear what changes it will make to its self-driving feature. update " is anachronistic and just plain wrong! ".

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As a Full self-driving function

Tesla's full self-driving feature doesn't actually allow for "self-driving" as most people understand it - the company's paperwork states that drivers must remain alert and ready to take control of the vehicle at any time. moment.

The feature allows cars to stay in a lane, automatically change lanes, park in an S, and slow down and stop at stop signs and traffic lights.In the United States, motorists paid between 5000 and 15. $000 for the "beta" version of the feature, which was first released in 2020 to customers who, according to Tesla, had demonstrated they were prudent and skilled enough to test the software on public roads.

In late November, Tesla rolled out the feature to everyone who bought it. Some Tesla owners have filed a class action lawsuit for fraud against the company, citing Musk's many broken promises about the arrival of self-driving technology (which according to the Tesla boss was a matter of months away).

The ups and downs with the US government

Tesla publishes quarterly vehicle safety reports, in which it says that cars using Autopilot are much less likely to get involved in accidents than the average vehicle. However, the comparison does not take into account other variables that would make Autopilot's role in accidents clearer, including the type and age of the car (new and luxury vehicles such as Tesla's are involved in fewer accidents ) and location (rural areas in the US, where Teslas are less popular, have more accidents on average). Federal data shows that Autopilot-equipped Tesla vehicles have been involved in at least 633 crashes since July 2021.

The recall represents only Tesla's latest showdown with the US federal government. The investigation into collisions between tow vehicles and Autopilot-equipped cars is still ongoing. Last year, the NHTSA also opened an investigation after receiving hundreds of complaints from motorists about the "phantom braking" of Autopilot vehicles, which apparently ground to a halt for no warning or apparent reason.
< Some of Tesla's interactions with the US government have been more pleasant, however. Just this week, President Joe Biden's administration announced that the company would participate in a project to create a nationwide public electric vehicle charging network, allowing for the first time drivers of other electric vehicles to use a portion of the already structured network of Tesla Superchargers.

The announcement is a sign of relaxation after years of freezing between Musk and the White House. According to the CEO, the current US administration would not have given Tesla due credit for having kicked off the car electrification project in the United States, while the government has opposed the company's anti-union positions. The truce manifested itself in Musk's favorite language: a presidential tweet.

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This article originally appeared on sportsgaming. win US.

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