Tesla Attacks Former Supplier

The battle is on. Tesla is accusing Mobileye, a former supplier, of blocking the development of its own proprietary vision system used in the Autopilot driver-assistance feature. Image: Getty

Tesla claims Mobileye tried to interfere with the development of its proprietary vision system by forcing Tesla to pay more for parts that it was selling to the electric car company, and by making Tesla promise to use its products in the future releases. When the automaker refused to meet the outrageous demands, Tesla says that Mobileye discontinued hardware support for Tesla vehicles and made several disparaging comments about the company.

In an interview with Reuters on Thursday, Mobileye CTO Amnon Shashua said Tesla was "pushing the envelope in terms of safety". He explained the accusation, saying, "[Autopilot] is not designed to cover all possible crash situations in a safe manner... No matter how you spin it, [Autopilot] is not designed for that. It is a driver-assistance system and not a driverless system."

Mobileye has responded to the new allegations in a statement that suggests Tesla is misleading customers by calling its driver-assistance mode "Autopilot", insinuating that the car can control itself without any human intervention. The statement goes as far as accusing Tesla CEO Elon Musk of ignoring safety concerns raised by Mobileye's CEO.

Here's part of the Mobileye statement:

It has long been Mobileye's position that Tesla's Autopilot should not be allowed to operate hands-free without proper and substantial technological restrictions and limitations. In communications dating back to May 2015 between Mobileye Chairman and Tesla's CEO, Mobileye expressed safety concerns regarding the use of Autopilot hands-free. After a subsequent face to face meeting, Tesla's CEO confirmed that activation of Autopilot would be "hands on." Despite this confirmation, Autopilot was rolled out in late 2015 with a hands-free activation mode. Mobileye has made substantial efforts since then to take more control on how this project can be steered to a proper functional safety system.

The spat is re-opening the conversation about the safety of Tesla vehicles and its Autopilot driver-assistance mode. In June, the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced the first fatal crash while a driver was using autopilot mode. And this week, a report from China surfaced alleging the first fatality involving the car's Autopilot mode happened in January.

For now, Tesla is staying committed to its Autopilot feature. The company announced it will release an update to its vehicles this week that will add increased reliance on the radar sensor used when autopilot is engaged. The vehicles currently use a camera as a its primary control sensor.

[Reuters]


Comments

    Hang on, this article reads the wrong way around. And the title also misleads.
    It was Mobileye who attached Tesla in public. Tesla responded giving context :

    "According to a Tesla spokesperson in a statement sent to Electrek today, Mobileye tried to convince Tesla to keep using its system for future generations of the Autopilot, but when it became apparent that Tesla was sticking to its new in-house system, which the company confirmed today is called ‘Tesla Vision’, they threaten to discontinue supply of the EyeQ3 chip to cripple the current version of the Autopilot.

    Tesla lists a few demands that Mobileye apparently requested for the EyeQ3 chips to keep coming for Tesla’s current production cars:

    Raising the price of their product retroactively
    Demanding an agreement to extremely unfavorable terms of sale and
    Demanding that Tesla not use data that was collected by its vehicles’ cameras for any purpose other than helping MobilEye develop its products
    Requiring that Tesla collaborate on Tesla Vision and source future vision processing from them until at least level 4
    The Tesla spokesperson said that the automaker refused to comply to the demands and that’s when Mobileye made its public announcement that it was ending its relationship with Tesla – though it continued shipping the EyeQ3 chip."

      When and where was that posted?

        https://electrek.co Is a great place to read up on anything EV related. The excerpt is from their website. Tesla responded to mobile eyes attack the day after the released it. Mobile eye has since responded again to Tesla. Interestingly they didn't try and refute most of Tesla's claims.

    Mobileye's stock tumbled 9.5% after this spat. For a company to come out publicly the way they did is crazy.

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