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Business

Tesla's muddled message about hands-free driving

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Business

Tesla's muddled message about hands-free driving

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COMING UP:Tesla's muddled message about hands-free driving

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Transcript

00:00:02
>> In mid-April this year, Elon Musk tweeted this video by Joshua Brown, showing his Tesla Model S avoiding a truck on autopilot mode. Three weeks later, as the world now knows, Brown died in a crash while his Tesla was on autopilot mode. Tesla officially says the self driving feature is meant to help drivers, not replace them.
00:00:23
But industry insider say Musk in his enthusiasm for the product might have confused his customers with a mixed message, says Reuters reporter, Alexandria Sage.>> In October, Elon Musk was very clear that Tesla owners should have their hands on the wheel when using autopilot. Fast forward to April, and Elon Musk is saying comments like, autopilot is twice as a good as a human driver.
00:00:51
And it appears that Tesla drivers really took home the latter message.>> Confident in the system's ability to self-steer and stay in its lane on highways, Tesla drivers have posted YouTube videos of themselves driving hands-free. One of them was Musk's ex-wife, actress Talulah Riley. This Instagram video, which was taken down, was posted on electrek.co, showing her behind the wheel of a Model X.
00:01:16
>> Traditional automakers, and industry experts, say that it's imperative to have a clear message to consumers, to drivers. Either you're hands are on the wheel, or your hands are off the wheel. And they say that Tesla can't have it both ways. You can't, on one hand, brag and boast about the capabilities of your technology and, at the same time, tell your drivers that your hands have to be on the wheel because it's in beta mode.
00:01:44
>> Musk now finding himself on the defensive. Tesla didn't disclose the drivers death as part of it's recent $2 billion stock sale, but last week, Musk retweeted this. 1.3 million people die a year in car accidents, yet, 1 person dies in a Tesla on autopilot and people decry driver-less cars as unsafe.