A district judge in the US state of California has dismissed a lawsuit by disgruntled Tesla owners, alleging that Tesla’s monopoly on repairs is forcing customers to accept high prices and long waits.
This follows after a pair of antitrust class actions suits filed in March alleging that Tesla’s vehicle design, warranty and repair policies are deliberately designed to force owners and lessees to be dependent on Tesla for all repairs, limiting competition from third parties.
The complaints made comparisons to regular combustion engine vehicles, where customers have a wide range of independent repairers and OEM parts to choose from. Unlike other vehicle manufacturers, Tesla don’t sell replacement parts to third parties.
However, US District Judge Trina Thompson said customers filing the suit failed to show either that the alleged problems were "not generally known" when they bought their vehicles, or that they could not predict the costs to keep their vehicles running, reports Reuters.
She also said customers could not prove that Tesla coerced them into using its services and parts simply because they had bought their vehicles in the first place.
"To be sure, plaintiffs allege that defendant misled them about...how much maintenance its EVs are designed to need and how long that maintenance ought to take," Thompson wrote. "But nowhere do plaintiffs allege that consumers are in fact unaware of the supposedly supracompetitive prices and exorbitant wait times."