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Nearly all 2 Million of Tesla’s Cars on US Roads have been Recalled

Following a two-year investigation by US safety regulators into almost 1,000 crashes in which the Autopilot technology was activated, Tesla is recalling almost all of its 2 million vehicles on US roads in order to restrict the use of the feature.

Tesla’s attempts to sell its cars to consumers who are prepared to pay more to have their cars drive for them are hampered by the constraints on Autopilot.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in some risky circumstances where a Tesla’s technology would not be able to safely negotiate the road, the Autopilot system can easily be abused and offer drivers a false sense of confidence.

The over-the-air software upgrade will increase the number of alerts that Tesla drivers receive while they are using the “Autosteer” feature of the Autopilot and are not looking at the road. According to a statement, the alerts will serve as a reminder to drivers to keep their hands on the wheel and pay attention to the road.

Following the recall, Teslas equipped with Autosteer will check the driver’s attention level more frequently. If the software detects that the driver is not paying attention, when the car is approaching traffic signals, or when the car is off the highway and Autosteer is insufficient to operate the vehicle, it may disengage the feature.

The software upgrade, which would limit the use of the Autosteer feature if a driver repeatedly fails to demonstrate that they are ready to regain control of the car while the feature is on, was agreed to by Tesla, according to a letter that revealed the recall. Tesla received the letter on Tuesday.
Tesla has been promoting its driver-assist technologies, such as Autopilot and “Full Self Driving,” which it claims makes driving safer than using a vehicle that is driven only by a human. However, for more than two years, the NHTSA has been looking at claims of mishaps employing Autopilot and its Autosteer feature.

The recall was announced two days after a thorough study, which included some fatalities, was published by a reputable journal. The inquiry revealed that the Autopilot mode should not have been used in the first place in at least eight serious incidents.

“Autosteer is intended for use only on highways and limited-access roads with a fully attentive driver,” according to Tesla owners manuals. However, the business has promoted the idea that the majority of driving decisions made by the cars, even when they are not on such roads, can be made safely because to their driver assist capabilities.

However, a number of incidents over the previous few years have been discovered by an NHTSA study, which suggests that these technologies may not live up to their names—Autopilot and Full Self Driving.

“In certain circumstances when Autosteer is engaged, the prominence and scope of the feature’s controls may not be sufficient to prevent driver misuse [of the feature],” the safety regulator stated in a letter to Tesla. According to the statement, “there may be an increased risk of a crash” when drivers are not totally focused and prepared to take control of the vehicle.

Tesla will notify car owners of the change by letter in addition to software upgrades.