Nearly two dozen Tesla owners have signed onto a lawsuit in the Bay Area that alleges the company’s Model 3 vehicles can dangerously accelerate on their own.
The suit was filed originally in January by eight plaintiffs in six states and the suit has now expanded to include 23 plaintiffs in 11 different states, according to the East Bay Times. The company “has been intentionally overlooking a dangerous problem while rushing its vehicles to market,” the lawsuit claims.
The unintended acceleration issued had been brought to light in the Model X and Model S and is now appearing in the Model 3, the suit says. We have reported on an array of Model S accidents over the last few years where cars have driven through the front of shops. In fact, two of them happened in one week back in March.
The lawsuit says: “A defect causes the Model X, Model S, and Model 3 to accelerate suddenly without prompting from the driver. These vehicles are capable of full power acceleration and achieving high speeds even if no one presses the acceleration pedal.”
Tesla claims that “there is no ‘unintended acceleration’ in Tesla vehicles” and that “the car accelerates if, and only if, the driver told it to do so.”
But the lawsuit points to 195 complaints to the NHTSA about the issue. 52 of those complaints happened in the Model 3 while 47 happened in the Model X and 96 occurred in the Model S.
One complaint states: “I drove my Tesla from work, driving over 35 miles during rush hour of the Bay Area. Instead of stopping, car sped up at extremely high acceleration. It drove through the garage door, hit Maserati parked in the garage, and a motorcycle.”
Another Plaintiff, Sandy Xia, said she was at a red light in February 2019 in her 2018 Model S “when she experienced sudden un-commanded acceleration that caused her to spin 360 degrees multiple times and collide with other vehicles.”
Recall, in Palm Springs back in March a driver suffered minor injuries after “crashing a Tesla into a building”, according to the Palm Spring Desert Sun.
But even more noteworthy was the fact that this was the second time in a week that a Tesla crashed through the front of a building in the Coachella Valley. Earlier that month an elderly woman plowed her Tesla through the front of Mastro’s Steakhouse in Palm Desert.
Recall, back in January of this year, we wrote about the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opening an investigation into a petition it received regarding certain Tesla models.
According to Bloomberg, the petition involved “unintended acceleration in vehicles”.
The NHTSA says its Office of Defects received the defect petition on December 19 and that the request applied to model year 2012 through 2019 Tesla Model S vehicles, model year 2016 through 2019 Tesla Model X vehicles and model year 2018 through 2019 Tesla Model 3 vehicles.
This totals about 500,000 Tesla vehicles.