Tesla Recalls 2 Million Vehicles in the US

by Warren Seah

Tesla, the electric vehicle manufacturer, has announced a recall of approximately 2 million vehicles, impacting all Tesla models currently on U.S. roads. Although this may seem like a significant number, it is not expected to have a major impact on Tesla’s stock.

The recall, issued by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, focuses on four different Tesla models produced between 2012 and 2023. Specifically, the recall targets Autosteer, Tesla’s driver assistance feature, which is part of their Autopilot control system.

According to the recall notice, there are concerns that under specific circumstances, the controls of the Autosteer feature may not adequately prevent driver misuse of the advanced driver-assistance technology classified as SAE Level 2.

The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) categorizes autonomous driving into different levels. Level 2 systems, including features like adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assistance, require drivers to remain attentive at all times. Level 3 systems permit certain instances where drivers can divert their attention. In contrast, Level 4 systems handle most of the driving tasks, and Level 5 systems provide complete autonomous capabilities.

At present, there are only a few vehicles equipped with Level 3 technology, which allows them to operate in traffic jams. Level 4 vehicles, like General Motors’ Cruise robotaxis, are also emerging in the market, whereas Level 5 vehicles are not yet available.

The recall notice does not specify the nature of the driver misuse or the specific fix required. Neither the NHTSA nor Tesla has provided further comments on these details.

Nevertheless, Tesla has already taken action to address the issue by implementing an over-the-air software update to modify the controls. Tesla vehicles utilize haptic feedback requirements, which require drivers to maintain pressure on the steering wheel to demonstrate engagement. Additionally, newer models are equipped with interior cameras that monitor driver’s attention, a feature also adopted by other automakers.

Tesla’s Latest Update Enhances Safety Features

Tesla, the renowned electric car manufacturer, has recently made a significant update to its vehicles’ safety features. While the specific changes have not been disclosed, it is speculated that Tesla has modified the interval time required for the driver to feel pressure on the wheel and adjusted the number of warnings before certain features are temporarily disabled. Although these are mere assumptions, they shed light on the company’s dedication to improving driver safety.

Although this development may have raised concerns among investors, the impact on Tesla’s stock prices has been minimal. In premarket trading, Tesla’s stock experienced a modest decline of approximately 1.2%, while futures for the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite showed an increase of around 0.2%.

Recalls are a common occurrence in the automotive industry, and they rarely have a significant effect on stock prices. Numerous major automobile manufacturers in the United States have issued recalls for approximately 26 million vehicles in 2023 alone. As for Tesla, including this recall, they have recalled around 2.4 million units. Comparatively, Toyota Motor has recalled approximately 3 million units, and Ford Motor has recalled nearly 6 million units.

While investors do express concern regarding major safety issues and costly recall repairs, Tesla’s software fix for this particular recall is relatively low-cost. Tesla’s driver-assistance features have garnered substantial attention due in part to CEO Elon Musk’s frequent discussions about their capabilities during company events and conference calls.

In terms of safety, this recall marks a resolution to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) investigation into complaints regarding Autosteer misuse. Remediating such issues through recalls is a standard procedure for the NHTSA, and it does not imply that Tesla’s driver-assistance features won’t undergo further scrutiny in the future for Autosteering or other reasons. The NHTSA continues to evaluate complaints and address potential concerns to ensure road safety.

With this recent update, Tesla vehicles have become even safer than before. This commitment to continuously enhancing safety features showcases the company’s dedication to maintaining high standards and keeping drivers secure on the roads.

Copyright © Write To Al Root

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