back to article Germany bans Tesla from claiming its Autopilot software is potentially autonomous

A judge in Munich has ruled in favor of banning Tesla Germany from repeating misleading descriptions of its Autopilot software in adverts. Phrases like “full potential for autonomous driving” and "Autopilot inclusive" should be no longer allowed, Wettbewerbszentrale, an independent German regulatory institution, argued. It …

  1. KBeee

    I think Tesla would have far less trouble if they called it something like "Driver Assistance" rather than Autopilot.

    1. steelpillow Silver badge

      Not really. Tesla's customers would have far less trouble.

    2. Flip

      What's In A Name?

      I've always thought that Tesla chose "Autopilot" in order to prevent other manufacturers from using it to describe their own "assisted driving" technologies. One day it may be an actual functioning "hands-off" type of thing, and then the name "Autopilot" will actually be closer to the truth.

  2. lglethal Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    Yet again Germany comes out with the sensible ruling...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      But...

      The Fanboi's are gnashing their teeth and ranting at this. How dare some ignorant judge in the home of BMW rule against the lord Elon and his disciples?

      Doesn't he know that everyone in BMWland will soon be driving a german build Tesla supercar that is at least 5 years ahead of everyone else?

      And Tesla will finally do a coast to coast (USA) trip on their full level 5 autopilot(promised in 2017). FSD will drive all other car makes off the road within a year and to hell with local laws.

      If you believe any of the above then you might like to seek professional help pronto.

      1. Qumefox

        Re: But...

        I have mixed feelings about Ol' Musky. On one hand, I love what SpaceX and Starlink are doing. On the other, Tesla has some of the most atrocious and anti-consumer business practices around.

        1. Toe Knee

          Re: But...

          Marginally relevant: an episode of my favorite podcast about Elon Musk. His childhood was... interesting.

          https://www.iheart.com/podcast/105-behind-the-bastards-29236323/episode/part-one-i-do-not-like-63419860/

        2. fuzzie

          Re: But...

          My take is that the successful Musk ventures are the ones where he's not very hands-on, e.g. SpaceX, StarLink, Boring Company, Hyperloop. All those, especially the first ones, are highly specialised technical, some very niche, endeavours where BS just doesn't fly. None of those are directly consumer-facing either. Tesla is very much his life-dream project, hence he's very very involved.

      2. LucreLout Silver badge

        Re: But...

        The Fanboi's are gnashing their teeth and ranting at this. How dare some ignorant judge in the home of BMW rule against the lord Elon and his disciples?

        ROFL.

        I'm a petrolhead, always have been, and I'm a massive "lord Elon fanboi", so I'm not sure how you think I'm supposed to feel about this. I'd quite like a Tesla model 3, or better yet the roadster, however I'm equally happy to tool about in a V6/8 bimmer.

        The ruling itself seems perfectly sensible to me - Europe is not America, and has a very different style of road network with very different hazards (many many European cyclists for example). Self driving cars, as in there's no steering wheel because we don't need one, may only come about on sealed roads containing only FSD vehicles. Or Musk and others may crack the problem. Whichever. The thing is, they haven't yet, which is why this ruling makes perfect sense to me.

        Let me explain the Musk fanboy thing for a moment, though the chance of anyone reading to the end before the red arrows fly is virtually nil. I don't believe in man made global warming, in my view it is a political outlook and not a scientific one. Now, I know many of you will disagree with that, but just hang fire a second... Lets assume I'm wrong. Very wrong.

        All transport needs to decarbonise, which means it'll have to go electric and that electric will have to be some shade of renewable energy (I'm not getting into the nukes are good/bad argument here). Musk has done more than all of the climate committees, all of the pressure groups, and all of the Greta's to make that a reality. Why? How? Well, if he can make an electric car that appeals, and they do, to a petrolhead, then he can make one that appeals to the average Joe too. And he has. He's made the end of the ICE age possible.

        Putting aside the stoner culture, the ego cult, and the "Ironman is based on me" stuff, he's moved the world view of what is possible with an electric vehicle and made them not just acceptable, but desireable. Now, how long have Ford, or VAG had to achieve that in, and how much progress had they made? Nobody really wants a Nissan Leaf, right?

        If I'm right about MMGW, we get some cool cars out of it. If the environmentalists are right, we get some cool cars that can be carbon neutral. Its a win-win in as much as anything ever is.

      3. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

        Re: But...

        And Tesla will finally do a coast to coast (USA) trip

        Cannonball Run?

  3. steelpillow Silver badge
    Pint

    About fscking time too

    This icon is two litres of Bavarian lager

  4. Mike 137 Silver badge

    "prepared to take over at any momen"

    A complete failure to understand human psychology. Reaction time is many times longer when task switching, so a "driver" using Tesla "autopilot" is never going to be prepared to take over - they're always going to be unprepared.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "prepared to take over at any momen"

      Yep. The only way you'd get even close to being ready woild be if you knew everything that was going on relating to the driving itself (speed, road conditions, whether there's a car in your blind-spot etc.)

      The only way to achieve that is basically by driving. So, you have an "autonomous" system that doesn't allow you to relax from driving, but can make your responses to emergencies much slower. A lose-lose.

      Fine for playing with on a test track, but no way in hell should they be on our roads.

    2. LucreLout Silver badge

      Re: "prepared to take over at any momen"

      a "driver" using Tesla "autopilot" is never going to be prepared to take over - they're always going to be unprepared.

      They're far more likely to be drunk, asleep, on the phone, fiddling with the radio / passenger. Self driving only works if its FSD. Anything less is a dangerous distraction.

  5. Pascal Monett Silver badge
    Mushroom

    About effing time

    "A judge in Munich has ruled in favor of banning Tesla Germany from repeating misleading descriptions of its Autopilot software in adverts "

    This misleading kind of declaration has already repeatedly killed people. Why has Musk not already reigned this in (okay, I know : money) ?

    There is no such thing as an autonomous vehicle, and implying in any way that you are selling a car that is autonomous should land you in jail for manslaughter.

    1. Trigonoceps occipitalis

      Re: About effing time

      There are autonomous vehicles. Tesler make them, it is just that they kill people.

    2. IGotOut Silver badge

      Re: About effing time

      "Why has Musk not already reigned this in (okay, I know : money)"

      I think ego is more like it.

  6. SuccessCase

    Based on my wife’s driving, their claim really does meet the required advertising standards.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Are we still in the 1980’s? I was under the impression the world wasn’t so sexist in 2020, must have been wrong

      1. SuccessCase

        Great, have I found someone unafraid enough to accompany her on long journeys?

        Also I’ve got this bridge for sale.

        1. LucreLout Silver badge
          Joke

          Stop arguing with your Anonymous Coward of a wife.

      2. hayzoos

        What is sexist about the statement?

        It appeared to be more a statement of fact or opinion of one's partner's driving ability. Also, nowadays the term wife no longer identifies one as female.

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