The Tesla investigation net is getting wider.
Tesla is currently under scrutiny from the National Traffic Highway Safety Administration over its "full self-driving" software. As we've mentioned plenty of times, it's just a Level 2 system as opposed to what the term full self-driving actually connotes. That means your eyes should always be on the road and your hands should be very near the wheel, if not on it.
But that's not how Tesla drivers roll. They take video evidence of themselves riding in the back seat. They push the system to its limits. And that has led to crashes, most notably with emergency vehicles. That's why NHTSA's investigating and that's why it's looking for more autonomous driving data, from GM, Ford, Toyota and more, according to Automotive News.
NHTSA's Office of Defects Investigation sent letters to 12 automakers, trying to gather info on vehicles with Level 2 driver assistance systems. It wants to know the number of vehicles with L2 that have been manufactured, as well as the miles covered and the data logs of the most recent updates. NHTSA also wants all consumer complaints, field reports, crash reports and lawsuits.
The automakers need to report the types of roads and driving conditions where the system could potentially be used, the methods used to prevent usage outside of those conditions, and provide an overview of how they make sure the driver is paying attention. This goes for the Ford Mustang Mach-E, the Cadillac Escalade, the new Silverado, and any other vehicle with this sort of system.
The American Big Three must respond by November 3, the rest of the companies need to bring NHTSA the information by November 17. Automakers that ignore the request could be on the hook for more than $100 million.
This is a good thing all the way around. If it takes info from Ford's Blue Cruise and GM's Super Cruise to make Tesla's FSD system better and safer for all of us, good. We're sick of reporting on autopilot accidents. And we're not sure we want to be on the receiving end of one of these crashes when we're pulled over for speeding.