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Tesla Flings Cash at 126 Norwegians to Settle Low-horsepower Lawsuit

money (401(k) 2012/Flickr)

For a company that prides itself on clean performance, a massive lawsuit and public claims of less-than-advertised power wasn’t great PR.

Tesla just swept an annoying bit of litigation into the dustbin of history by promising a different kind of green to 126 Norwegian owners, all the while claiming it did nothing wrong.

According to Reuters, both the car company and owners have agreed to withdraw the case. The suit, filed in September, alleged the dual-motor P85D’s performance didn’t measure up to its advertised 691-horsepower capability.

At the time of sale, Tesla advertised the combined capability of the P85D’s both motors — 467 in the rear, 224 in the front — though actual output can vary. This is what the litigants were after. Many claimed the vehicle’s actual horsepower fell short of the company’s claims, and performance suffered for it.

In its defense, Tesla was able to point to independent acceleration tests that matched company claims. The automaker also said the power figures were confirmed by European regulators.

In a blog post created in September, 2015, Tesla delved into the confusing world of combined electric motor horsepower figures:

With the shaft horsepower coming out of the motors the situation is not always as simple as front + rear. As we have pushed the combined motor horsepower higher and higher, the amount of times where the battery chemical horsepower is lower than the combined motor horsepower has increased.

The Norwegian newspaper Dagens Naeringsliv reported that each owner stands to receive 65,000 Norwegian crowns, which works out to about $7,700. That’s about half of what the litigants hoped to gain through the lawsuit. However, it’s very close to the sum Tesla paid to five Norwegian P85D owners in June, at the request of the Norway Consumer Disputes Commission.

[Image: 410(k) 2012/Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)]

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