Last June, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration made a new rule: Every automaker that ships cars with Level 2 or higher driver-assist systems has to inform NHTSA when a car crashes under the system’s influence. A year later, the administration has released the first ten months’ worth of that data, as reported in the New York Times, and it shows the vast majority of crashes are concentrated in one automaker: Tesla.
According to the Times, NHTSA catalogued 392 crashes in which a car’s Level 2 driver-assist features were enabled within 30 seconds of the impact. Out of those 392, a whopping 273 were Teslas running Autopilot — nearly 70 percent of the total number of crashes.
Of course, what the data doesn’t show is how many cars with driver-assist features each automaker has on the road. Tesla has a head start on the competition, having rolled out Autopilot way back in 2015. More cars, with more miles traveled, will almost certainly mean more crashes. How many more, and whether Tesla’s autopilot crash rate is proportional to the number of cars running the software, requires more data to know.
The other oddity in NHTSA’s release, however, is Honda. Of the 119 non-Tesla Level 2 crashes, Honda accounted for a full 90. the next highest-ranking automaker, Subaru, had only ten — again, different automakers have different numbers of cars out on the roads with Level 2 features, and an automaker on the scale of Honda is likely to have more crashes than a smaller competitor like Subaru. Still, the spikes are concerning — especially as Honda moves into the Level 3 semi-autonomous space.
The list, which you can find in The Verge’s article, is rounded out with Ford at five crashes, Toyota at four, BMW at three, GM at two, and Aptiv, Hyundai, Lucid, Porsche, and Volkswagen with one each.