Tesla Autopilot accident in Beijing

Image: Tesla

There has been another Tesla Autopilot accident, this time in Beijing, with the company citing a misunderstanding over the car being “self-driving”.

USA Today reports that Luo Zhen’s Model S scraped against a parked car while the Tesla’s Autopilot – which has been described as a driver-assisting, rather than automated feature – was engaged.

The company said that the driver’s hands were not on the steering wheel. According to Luo, Tesla salespeople misled him about what the car was capable of.

“The impression they give everyone is that this is self-driving, this isn’t assisted driving,” he said, according to Reuters.

According to other customers, salespeople led them to believe the car was self-driving, and the words “zidong jiashi” – or “self-driving” – appear on Tesla’s Chinese portal.

Tesla said that it never claimed its Autopilot feature was fully autonomous.

“The driver of the Tesla, whose hands were not detected on the steering wheel, did not steer to avoid the parked car and instead scraped against its side,” a spokesperson told Reuters.

“As clearly communicated to the driver in the vehicle, autosteer is an assist feature that requires the driver to keep his hands on the steering wheel at all times, to always maintain control and responsibility for the vehicle, and to be prepared to take over at any time.”

The accident follows the death earlier this year of a Florida man whose car crashed into a truck while on Autopilot .