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Tesla Model 3 China
A look at a Tesla Model 3 in China. Image courtesy of Tesla Greater China.


Tesla China Wins Lawsuit Against Driver Who Claimed Tesla Was Responsible For His Bad Driving

In China, Tesla won a lawsuit against a driver who wrecked his Model 3 and blamed Tesla for his bad driving. “Ray4Tesla” has been keeping tabs on the case since August 2020, and here’s a recap.

In August 2020, the owner of a Tesla Model 3 crashed into a parking lot in China and said that Tesla was at fault. The driver claimed that it was sudden acceleration and brake failure despite video footage proving the driver didn’t use the brakes. If he did, the brake lights would have been on.

Ray noted back in May that according to Wenzhou Auto Engineering Society, which looked at the data from the vehicle’s event data recorder (EDR) and from Tesla, the driver actually had his foot on the accelerator and didn’t use the brake before the crash. This can also be seen in the video footage, where Ray pointed out that the third brake light was clearly not on. He showed a blown-up image and compared it side by side with another made-In-China Model 3 with all of its lights on. He also pointed out that the vehicle was speeding.

The driver was seriously injured in the accident and was found to be fully responsible. Ray pointed out that the driver has continued to blame Tesla and the malfunction of his car as the cause of the accident. The driver also spread a lot of misinformation against Tesla and this led to Tesla’s critics, primarily anti-Tesla conspiracy theorists, spreading FUD about the brand and its cars.

This week, Ray shared the news that Tesla China won the litigation according to a court ruling in September. Tesla China filed a lawsuit in July against the driver for deliberately twisting the truth about his accident. The driver has been fined 50K CNY ($7,750) and has been ordered to apologize to Tesla within 10 days for at least 90 days on SM (possible meaning: social media).

The driver has also been ordered to submit his apology statement to the court for review and approval prior to posting it on Chinese social media. Ray noted that the court document revealed that just after the accident, the driver admitted to police that he pressed the accelerator instead of the brake pedal. EDR and mechanic checks confirmed the driver’s admission to the police.

Seriously — we need to stop blaming Tesla for drivers driving badly. It happens with all cars. I really don’t understand why it’s okay for those who wreck their Tesla vehicles to get to blame Tesla for their own actions and get hailed as victims by many in our mainstream media.

Headlines such as “Tesla Starts Suing former Customers For Defamation in China” make it seem as if Tesla is suing people for talking bad about it regularly. That particular article failed to mention that the driver admitted to police that he had, in fact, pressed the accelerator and not the brakes. This is a great example of cherry picking.

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