Tesla chief Elon Musk has come under the scanner of the US securities regulator over his involvement in the EV car’s self-driving claims, Bloomberg reported citing a person familiar with the development.
The move is part of an ongoing investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over the company’s remarks about its Autopilot driver-assistance system.
Musk is already under trial for allegedly misleading investors with his 2018 tweet saying “funding secured” for taking Tesla private.
According to Bloomberg, the watchdog is looking into whether Musk may have inappropriately made forward-looking statements.
Although it is unclear which remarks or actions of Musk have garnered the agency’s attention.
Last week, a senior engineer on the Tesla team working on its Autopilot software in a testimony revealed that a video the company released in 2016 purporting to show a Tesla vehicle driving itself was in fact staged.
Elluswamy said that the video titled “Full Self-Driving Hardware on All Teslas” was intended to “portray what was possible to build the system” rather than what customers could actually expect the system to do.
The clip, which was tweeted by Musk claiming that “Tesla drives itself,” shows a Tesla driving and parking itself, avoiding obstacles, and following red and green lights.
The video starts with a title card saying that “the person in the driver’s seat is only there for legal reasons” and that “he is not doing anything. The car is driving by itself.”
Elluswamy said that the demo was “specific to some predetermined route,” rather than to the production version of the tech that was just relying on input from cameras and sensors.
“It was using additional premapped information to drive,” he said, after telling lawyers that the route the car followed had previously been 3D mapped.
(With inputs from agencies)