Tesla to recall about half a million cars in US

Electric vehicle maker issues recall over defects in camera system and boot

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Tesla has recalled more than 475,000 of its electric vehicles to address camera system and boot issues that increase the risk of a crash, a US road safety regulator said on Thursday.

The model years affected by the recall range from 2014 to 2021 and the total number of recalled vehicles is almost equivalent to the half a million vehicles Tesla delivered last year.

The US electric vehicle manufacturer is recalling 356,309 of its 2017-2020 Model 3 vehicles to address rear-view camera issues and 119,009 Model S vehicles for front-located boot problems, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said.

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In this courtesy image provided to AFP on December 13, 2021 by Time: Elon Musk, Time's "Person of he Year" for 2021 is shown on the Time Magazine Person of the Year cover.  - Time magazine on December 13, 2021, named Tesla chief and space entrepreneur Elon Musk as its person of the year, citing his embodiment of the technological shifts but also troubling trends reshaping people's lives.  (Photo by Mark Mahaney  /  TIME  /  TIME Person of the Year  /  AFP)  /  RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO  /   Mark Mahaney for TIME  /  Time " - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS - Please show all four corners before zooming in and do not alter in any way

For Model 3 sedans, “the rear-view camera cable harness may be damaged by the opening and closing of the [boot] lid, preventing the rear-view camera image from displaying,” the NHTSA said.

Tesla identified 2,301 warranty claims and 601 field reports on the issue in US vehicles.

For Model S vehicles, latch problems may lead the front boot to open “without warning and obstruct the driver’s visibility, increasing the risk of a crash”, Tesla said.

Tesla said it was not aware of any crashes, injuries or deaths related to the issues cited in the recall of Model 3 and Model S cars, the NHTSA said.

The electric car maker has been bedevilled by recalls this year.

In February, Tesla recalled 135,000 Model X and S vehicles because of faulty touchscreens, Engadget reported.

A further 12,300 Model X cars were recalled that same month because of loose trim panels, and in June the company recalled 6,000 Model and Ys over defective calliper bolts.

Last month, Tesla recalled 12,000 vehicles because of software issues.

The NHTSA has also opened an investigation into a report that Tesla's touchscreens allow users to play video games while driving. The investigation covers about 580,000 Tesla cars.

The agency says Tesla's “Passenger Play” feature could distract drivers and increase the risk of a collision.

Tesla has since locked the feature while the cars are in motion.

Reuters contributed to this report

Updated: December 30, 2021, 7:19 PM