SEOUL: Tesla Inc (TSLA.O) changed an advertisement about the driving range for its Model 3 in South Korea after an antitrust regulator found that the automaker exaggerated the specifications of its batteries.
The description of the Model 3 sedan on Tesla’s Korean website was changed to say the car can travel “up to” 528 kilometers (328 miles) on a single charge, from “over” 528 kilometers, according to local media reports.
The Korea Fair Trade Commission (KFTC) said this week it had sent the U.S. electric vehicle (EV) maker a report saying it had inflated the range of some models, including the Model 3, in violation of the Fair Label. law and advertising. read more
Analysts say most electric vehicles typically experience some loss of range in cold weather.
“The KFTC plans to give the automaker the opportunity to respond to our finding and then hold a general meeting to review and determine the extent to which the automaker has violated the law and decide the level of sanctions,” said a commission official, asking not to be named because of the sensitivity of the matter.
On its U.S. website, the Model 3 description said: “Go anywhere with “up to” 358 miles of estimated range on a single charge.” That distance equates to about 576km.
A description of Hyundai Motor Corp’s (005380.KS) Ioniq 5 midsize crossover also says its range is a “maximum” 429 kilometers on a single charge.
While analysts say mileage labels should follow country-specific guidelines, the KFTC’s claims to Tesla’s mileage ads will likely not have a significant impact on the automaker’s sales in the country, citing Tesla’s dominance and reputation in the electric vehicle market.