Elon Musk: Tesla Model S Autopilot is misunderstood

It requires the Palo Alto, California-based automaker to file responses in the coming weeks.

Tesla similarly rolled out a less expensive, 60 KwH version of its closely related Model S sedan about a month ago.

The latest crash involved a Tesla owner who has only identified himself by his last name, Pang.

Other companies' autonomous system developments are gathering pace.

Musk has also been under fire for Tesla's $2.5-billion bid for Tesla's sister company Solar City.

NHTSA on Tuesday released a letter that it had sent to Tesla giving details about its investigation.

And while the mission of the company has historically been to "accelerate the advent of electric transportation", Tesla's website now says the mission is about sustainable energy. Tesla Motors stock, however, gained 0.1 percent during the week, which may not be so bad after the news of its failed deliveries.

However, he told the Wall Street Journal that his company would publish a blog highlighting how drivers should make use of the technology.

The trooper did not cite the driver, saying he believed any citation would be voided because of the driver's claim that the auto was on Autopilot. Before activating the service, drivers are informed on their screens that they must keep their hands on the wheel. The letter asks Tesla to turn over any information on consumer complaints or reports of crashes, or other incidents in which a vehicle's accident-prevention systems may not have worked properly. In this case, the EPA estimate is 200 miles, Tesla says.

A spokesman said the agency hasn't determined if a safety defect exists with Autopilot. "As road conditions became increasingly uncertain, the vehicle again alerted the driver to put his hands on the wheel", said Tesla.

In a July 10 tweet, Musk wrote that "beta" for Tesla means "any system (with) less than 1B miles of real world driving". But before any of those cars got built, it upgraded its smallest battery to 70 kWh and then to 75 kWh.

According to news sources, the Tesla Model X hit a guard rail and bounced into a concrete barrier, flipping onto its roof in the process. Autosteer is the steering function in Autopilot. The tragedy is of course being investigated, but nobody ever said these systems would be flawless. "Nonetheless, when used in conjunction with driver oversight, the data is unequivocal that Autopilot reduces driver workload and results in a statistically significant improvement in safety when compared to purely manual driving". That's despite a customer using Tesla's Autopilot driver-assist technology being killed in a horrific Florida crash, subsequent safety and possible securities investigations, the defection of a manufacturing executive to Facebook and missing yet another sales target.

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