Tesla loses Top Gear appeal in UK

© Tesla Motors

End of the Road

Tesla tried to overturn an earlier dismissal of its claim for libel and damages against the UK show Top Gear. The appeal court judge Martin Moore-Bick has just rendered a decision that concludes that Top Gear did not libel Tesla by saying and implying that the Roadster's range was lower than claimed.

He said viewers would recognize that Top Gear's high-speed track testing was quite different to a normal driving style.

"It would be obvious to a reasonable viewer ... that the range derived from track testing was not in any meaningful sense the car's 'true range'," he said. (source)

This is a bit unsatisfactory to me, as Tesla's claims were also that the Top Gear cast were shown on screen pushing an electric Roadster that still had juice left, implying that it had run out of power when it had not, and that they found a script on the set that had a "running out of power" scene written before any testing was done.

But then again, it was years ago (in 2008), it's difficult to prove, Tesla has new challenges to face now, and their future rests on the Model S, not the Roadster. Still, if Tesla's reputation was muddied up undeservedly, it's sad that there's no consequences for those who did it.

Via Reuters

See also: Tesla vs. New York Times: Epilogue

Tags: Electric Cars | Electric Vehicles | United Kingdom