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For Tesla owners who paid up to an extra $5,000 for the autopilot feature upgrade between 2016 and 2017, there's good news and bad news as a result of the class action over the automaker's autopilot system.
The good news is that the latest proposed settlement in the class action seeking to resolve these claims requires Tesla to pay $5 million.
The bad news, the owners of the vehicles will only be reimbursed between $20 to $280 each.
Autopilot Delayed, but Delivered?
The potential class action case sought to hold Tesla liable for representing to buyers that the autopilot system would make driving safer, when, as the consumers alleged, it was actually dangerous to use the feature. The settlement obviously does not admit that fact. Rather, it focuses on the fact that the system was not fully ready when these buyers made their purchases.
Since Tesla started receiving complaints from upset drivers, and the lawsuit was filed, there have been several updates making the autopilot feature much more functional. Unfortunately though, it is still a big technological step forward to have self-driving cars, and this lawsuit isn't the automaker's only hill to climb.
Regardless of the fact that the lawsuit and settlement only apply to U.S. consumers, Tesla has stated that it plans to provide consumers globally with the same remedy. Owners across the globe are probably all thinking the same thing in the same sarcastic way: "Gee ... thanks Elon."
Notably though, the autopilot feature has some real promise for making sure no one has to walk more than 10 steps at a time every again. It is designed not just to keep the car in its lane and adjust speed based on traffic, but it can also change lanes, exit a freeway, park, as well as be summoned autonomously to and from a garage. Despite the rocky delivery, the automaker, other transportation industry companies, and even consumers, all have high hopes for the self-driving future.