Tesla Self-Driving Death Mars Fledgling Technology

Two Tesla Motors autopilot cars were involved in crashes in May, and one of them was fatal, leveling new scrutiny on the fledgling automaker.

The accidents marked the first recorded death in a self-driving car. The technology has promised to change the way we do, or rather do not, drive cars.

With the death of Tesla Model S owner Joshua Brown in Florida, and the rollover of a Model X in Michigan, new scrutiny surrounds the cars, as well as the financial future of Tesla Motors, the luxury electric car start up out of Palo Alto, Calif. 

Importantly, Brown had posted a video boasting about his car’s ability to avoid collisions on the highway while in autopilot mode, only to die in the nation’s first self-driving car accident.

The crash involving the Model X, driven by 70-year-old wealthy art dealer Albert Scaglione added a higher profile to the promising car’s troubles. In fact, Tesla bills its Model X as the “Safest, fastest, and most capable sport utility vehicle in history.”

It is impressive, from a motorsports perspective, that the Model X, an all electric car, can jump from zero to 60 in just over 3 seconds, and maybe that is the real value moving forward. Nonetheless, “safest” may be a stretch until Tesla founder Elon Musk can dial in the self-driving technology.