The US Highway Safety Agency (NHTSA) has asked Tesla for further explanation of its driver assistance systems, especially that some users are apparently not allowed to speak negatively about them. As part of a preliminary investigation into Autopilot opened in August after a series of accidents with emergency vehicles, the agency sent Elon Musk’s group on Tuesday, October 12, a letter requesting information about the confidentiality concluded with some drivers testing a new functionality since October 2020.

The latter, called Full Self-Driving (FSD), theoretically makes it possible to detect stops and turn at intersections where Autopilot is mainly used to control the speed and the trajectory of the car on marked lanes. According to reports, NHTSA explains, confidentiality agreements “apparently limit the ability of participants (testing the new version) to share information that could portray it negatively.” The agency relies in part on feedback from drivers to assess potential safety flaws. “Any agreement that could prevent or dissuade participants in the test program from reporting safety concerns to NHTSA is unacceptable,” the agency wrote in this document, which AFP was able to consult on Wednesday.

In a separate letter, NHTSA further asks Tesla to justify why the company did not initiate a vehicle recall after updating its driver assistance software to improve detection of emergency vehicle lights. night. Any manufacturer is indeed in the obligation to recall the vehicles concerned when it considers to have spotted a defect which could affect safety, recalls the NHTSA. The agency also claims in this letter information on how the group has chosen drivers who can since early October ask to test a new version of its driver assistance system, dubbed FSD Beta 10.2.

Elon Musk announced on Twitter Monday that this version is being rolled out to drivers the company considers the safest. Autopilot is already the subject of much controversy after a series of accidents involving vehicles of the brand. The fact that Tesla is testing new driving assistance features in real conditions with ordinary drivers without having requested specific authorization is fueling controversies.


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