Tesla – The Self Crashing Car?

Today in Technology

In Irvine, California the driver of an all new Tesla Model X reportedly crashed the vehicle into a building. The driver claimed that while parking, the vehicle accelerated by itself and he was unable to stop it before it crashing into the building. According to Tesla, the opposite happened: the man pressed the accelerator and was unable to stop before he hit the building. After the accident occurred, Tesla’s roadside assistance program collected the car which allowed for Tesla to read the cars data which stated that Tesla’s assumptions were true – the car did not auto accelerate. After reading the data, a Tesla representative released this statement:

“We analyzed the vehicle logs which confirm that this Model X was operating correctly under manual control and was never in Autopilot or cruise control at the time of the incident or in the minutes before. Data shows that the vehicle was traveling at 6 mph when the accelerator pedal was abruptly increased to 100%. Consistent with the driver’s actions, the vehicle applied torque and accelerated as instructed. Safety is the top priority at Tesla and we engineer and build our cars with this foremost in mind. We are pleased that the driver is ok and ask our customers to exercise safe behavior when using our vehicles.”

Tesla is not at fault for this incident; the driver is. There is an underlying issue with Tesla vehicles though: the cars are simply too fast for the inexperienced drivers that are purchasing them. Due to Tesla’s all electric propulsion system there is not torque curve in the vehicle. This means that as soon as the accelerator is pressed, the car instantly reaches max torque and propels the vehicle forward from 0-60mph in a blistering 2.8 seconds for the 2016 Tesla Model S P90D and 4.8 seconds for the 2016 Tesla Model X 90D (the vehicle in this article).

With that being said, the driver is clearly at fault in this incident but people should still look to Tesla. When purchasing a car with supercar acceleration stats, Tesla should make it very clear how fast the car is – they should  offer a drivers education class which familiarizes users with the features and power of the car.



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