A Tesla Model Y has been filmed unexpectedly crashing head-on into a wall in China – as a US customer files a lawsuit against the electric car giant’s semi-autonomous driving tech, claiming the system suddenly brakes without reason.
All was going well for this Tesla Model Y driver in China – until it wasn’t.
In a video posted to social media platform Twitter, the Tesla Model Y is filmed travelling through a tunnel in China when it unexpectedly brakes and turns hard right, spearing off the road and into a wall.
According to the video, little more than a second passed between the Tesla’s brakes being applied and the car hitting the wall.
The cause of the crash and the extent of the damage to the Tesla Model Y is unclear, although the lining of the tunnel’s walls fell down on the electric SUV shortly after impact.
Doubts about the safety of Tesla’s semi-autonomous driving tech – in particular forcing cars to suddenly brake without warning – have led to a lawsuit for a class action against the electric car giant in the US.
In a report by news agency Reuters, US Tesla Model 3 owner, Jose Alvarez Toledo, believes the company’s ‘Autopilot’ semi-autonomous driving system is a “frightening and dangerous nightmare” when it forces the car to brake for non-existent obstacles.
“When the sudden unintended braking defect occurs, they turn what is supposed to be a safety feature into a frightening and dangerous nightmare,” Toledo’s lawsuit said, according to Reuters.
The lawsuit is seeking class-action status for US Tesla owners who have experienced the sudden braking defect.
Tesla’s website states ‘Autopilot’ and ‘Full Self-Driving’ should only be used by an attentive driver with both hands on the wheel –despite there being no safeguards in place if drivers do not follow these instructions.
Earlier this month, veteran US road safety campaigner Ralph Nader called Tesla’s ‘Autopilot’ and ‘Full Self-Driving’ autonomous systems “one of the most dangerous and irresponsible actions by a car company in decades”.
“This nation should not allow this malfunctioning software which Tesla itself warns may do the ‘wrong thing at the worst time’ on the same streets where children walk to school,” Mr Nader said in a statement.
“Tesla should never have put this technology in its vehicles. Now over 100,000 Tesla owners are currently using technology that research shows malfunctions every eight minutes.”