Consumer wins lawsuit against Tesla over faulty car

Tesla has been convicted of fraud over the sales of a second-hand car to Chinese consumer Han Chao.

Tesla will have to pay Han a refund of 379,700 yuan (US$58,911) and a compensation of 1.13 million yuan, triple its buying price, a Beijing court has ruled.

This is a final judgment, which means Tesla cannot appeal to another court.

The court stated that Tesla cheated the customer by not properly clarifying the status of the vehicle, including a past accident and corresponding repair.

Tesla has been accused of selling defective new cars or second-hand cars by multiple consumers but very few win court cases.

Earlier last year Tesla didn't accept the decision in the case against Han and appealed to the Beijing No. 2 Intermediate People's Court.

Han purchased a second-hand Model S from Tesla in June 2019, but the car broke down seven times due to various problems in the two-and-a-half months that followed. The most serious incident happened on August 24, when he lost control of the vehicle after both the accelerator pedal and brakes malfunctioned, nearly causing an accident, Han said.

An appraisal service later found structural damages to the car and confirmed that it had been involved in an accident before being sold to Han.

The plaintiff argued that Tesla defrauded him as it claimed that all second-hand vehicles in their inventory have never been in serious accidents and have no structural damage. Tesla said that the vehicle in question was only involved in a fender bender, and that the broken fender had been replaced.