Tesla libel action against Top Gear stalls

A judgement as to whether BBC programme Top Gear did libelled Tesla Motors has been reserved by the high court, after the company filed a libel action against the programme, claiming it had made a number of falsehoods against its Roadster model.

Tesla claimed that an episode which showed the roadster ran out of battery after 55 miles, far less than the claimed 200 miles it could do, alongside five other false statements about the car made in 2008, were libellous.

It was claimed that the footage of the car breaking down on the programme’s racetrack had been ‘staged’ and that the company had seen a ‘continuing impact’ on its reputation as a result of the programme being available through DVD, on-demand and online.

The judgement on the malicious falsehood claim was reserved, with a verdict expected to be returned in the coming weeks.

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