Model S owner sues Tesla over sudden battery capacity reduction

A Model S owner experienced a sudden drop in the estimated range and battery capacity of his car and has filed a lawsuit in the US. He states that Tesla has deliberately reduced the battery capacity without pointing out the drivers.

In the collective case, Model S owner David Rasmussen points to a number of cases where Tesla batteries caught fire. According to him, Tesla deliberately chose not to inform its customers about the potential fire risk, but chose to “operate behind the backs of its customers and use software updates to throttle the battery to avoid liability.” .

The Model S owner says he did not receive a new battery under warranty from Tesla, that he suffered damage in the form of a decrease in battery capacity of approximately 8kWh and that he is suffering damage because the decreased capacity causes him to charge more often and therefore takes longer on his daily trips. In addition, he states that he continues to run the risk that Tesla will manipulate the software more often and that the company has not provided any information about the problem. Rasmussen would also suffer from slower loading since the updates.

This case only concerns Model S and X models with 85kWh batteries, which have been discontinued since 2016. For most users, the reduced scope would have been implemented with the 2019.16.1 and 2019.16.2 updates. Rasmussen installed the first-mentioned update on May 15, after which the second was automatically rolled out on May 29 as an ota update. In the weeks after the installation of the first update, his maximum predicted range decreased by about 3 to 8 km per day, compared to the situation before the updates. In the end, the usual 397km was no longer indicated as maximum range, but 350km.

According to the complainant, the timing of the updates in question was not chosen by chance. He relates this to Tesla car batteries that caught fire, which happened in Shanghai, San Francisco and Germany, among other places. Rasmussen told Electrek that he thinks Tesla discovered something in the batteries that could lead to this dangerous problem. Not only is he annoyed by the reduced range, but he says he is also a bit afraid to put the car in his garage. Rasmussen’s Model S had already driven 52,000 km when he received the car and it currently has 220,000 km on the clock.

Tesla has responded to the subpoena. The company says a very small percentage of older Model S and X vehicles may have experienced a small decrease in range when the battery is charged to its maximum level following a software update intended to extend its life. to improve the battery. Tesla says it is working to resolve this issue and is already rolling out ota updates to do so.