Teen fails driving test due to regenerative braking in his Tesla Model 3

A teen in San Jose, California recently flunked his driving test, and not because he failed to come to a complete stop or change lanes without performing a shoulder check.

Instead, Bryce Rosenblum failed his test on November 23, 2021 because the car he was driving, a Tesla Model 3, had regenerative braking.

According to the 16-year old, the instructor was already wary of the regenerative braking before leaving the parking lot.

“Right off the bat, she warns me that the car was slowing down on its own, like at a stop sign. And she told me that happened twice, before we even left the parking lot. And then we continue on the test. We did everything that a test is supposed to have in it. And then she then pulled me in and told me I failed,” Bryce Rosenblum told KPIX.

Instead of telling Rosenblum to turn off the regenerative braking system, the instructor decided to fail the teen, noting it as the reason for the “unsatisfactory” result on the score sheet.

After being told the bad news, Rosenblum asked what he could do differently next time. The instructor told him not to use a Tesla and borrow a car “that has a motor, instead of an actual electric car.”

When asked by local media about the test, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) quickly changed their tune. Within hours of being contacted, the government agency said his test was going to be revised to a pass.

Thank you for your inquiry related to Bryce Rosenblum’s behind-the-wheel driving test. DMV’s Field Operations Division reviewed the drive test score sheet and has determined the drive test score will be revised as passing. The customer will be advised that their license should be arriving in the mail soon.

According to the DMV, instructors have been told to not postpone driving tests if an applicant is using a vehicle with regenerative braking or one-pedal driving.

They have also been told to follow the existing criteria, and not use regenerative braking as the sole reason to score a driving error or critical driving error on the test.

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