A view of the Tesla service centre in Singapore July 16, 2022. REUTERS/Chen Lin

The Federal Association of Consumer Advice Centers accuses the electric car manufacturer Tesla of misleading advertising on CO2 emissions and lack of information for buyers on data protection. The association has therefore sued the group before the district court in Berlin, as the VZBV announced on Tuesday. The court confirmed receipt of the lawsuit. There was initially no reaction from Tesla.

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The consumer advice center criticizes the so-called guard mode of the cars in particular. With this camera, parked Tesla vehicles can survey their surroundings. “Tesla’s guard mode is intended to protect the vehicle,” said VZBV legal expert Heiko Dünkel. “However, Tesla does not mention that data protection-compliant use is practically impossible.”

According to this, users would actually always need a declaration of consent from all passers-by who walk past the parked car. The fact that the guard mode was approved despite major data protection deficiencies indicates gaps in the approval procedures for automated driving functions.