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Tesla Autopilot Now Under Investigation for Unexpected Braking

Feb. 17, 2022
The NHTSA says it has received 354 complaints of “phantom breaking” in Tesla Model 3 and Y vehicles.

Tesla Motors is under investigation yet again for its vehicles driver-assist features. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened its latest investigation into the electric-vehicle manufacturer Wednesday following 354 complaints received about unexpected “phantom braking” in two Tesla vehicles, the Model 3 and Model Y.

Though the braking phenomenon has not yet led to any crashes or injuries, the NHTSA reports that the complaints it receive say the braking happens while using the vehicle’s advanced driver assistance system, or ADAS, sometimes at highway speeds.

It’s not the first time Tesla has been investigated for the safety features of its driver-assistance features, which it brands “Autopilot,” by the NHTSA. According to the Associated Press, this is Tesla’s fourth time under investigation in the last three years. An earlier investigation into the self-driving system was launched in August 2021 after the NHTSA identified 11 crashes tied to the driver-assistance systems, including one fatal crash.

Despite the name, Tesla Motors and CEO Elon Musk both assert that vehicles using the “autopilot” feature still require "active driver supervision.” 

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