Elon Musk's Tesla facing NZ$226 million fine after Norwegian judgement

Elon Musk in front of a Model S - Tesla owners in Denmark and the US have also taken action after the software update.
Owners in Denmark and the US have also taken action after the software update Photo credit: Getty Images

Elon Musk's Tesla has been ordered to pay 136,000 Kroner (NZ$22,600) each to thousands of car owners in Norway in a ruling made against the electric car company.

The customers filed the complaint in December 2020, alleging a software updated in 2019 decreased battery life and slowed down battery charging.

Nettavisen reports the owners won the case when Tesla failed to file a response.

There were around 10,000 Model S cars sold between 2013 and 2015 impacted by the software update, which could end up costing Tesla 1.36 billion Kroner (NZ$226 million) if upheld.

Tesla has until May 31 to pay the owners or appeal to the Oslo Conciliation Board and didn't comment on the judgement.

It is facing similar complaints elsewhere, with 75 Danish owners suing and a class action lawsuit launched in Northern California back in 2019 alleging the company limited the battery range of older vehicles to avoid a costly recall to fix alleged defective batteries.

Tesla owner David Rasmussen told the Electrek website the range of his Model S dropped by 11 percent in just five weeks after the update.

"My 2014 Model S 85 was getting Rated Range of 247 miles until May 13. Now after the next update, it continued to drop to now 217 miles," he said.