Driver abuses Tesla Autopilot by sitting in rear seat

May 2021
Updated: December 2021

A man has been recorded sitting in the back seat of a driverless Tesla Model 3 using its Autopilot feature while he looks out of the rear window and grins at someone in another car.

Social media reports suggest this is not the first time the man had pulled the illegal stunt. Param Sharma, 25, was later arrested by California Highway Patrol on two counts of reckless driving and disobeying a police officer.

The episode raises concerns about the ease with which Tesla's Autopilot system can be abused, as well as the degree of misuderstanding about its capabilities, which have been heavily hyped by Elon Musk and his company.

Operator: Tesla
Developer: Tesla
Country: USA
Sector: Automotive
Purpose: Automate steering, acceleration, braking
Technology: Driver assistance system
Issue: Safety; Marketing - hype