Here’s the Real Story Behind Tesla’s “Recall” of 285,000 or 249,000 Vehicles in China

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Reuters has reported that Tesla “recalled” 249,855 Model 3 and Model Y vehicles in China, and also noted that owners were not required to return their vehicles. Bloomberg noted that the number was higher than 285,000 vehicles and that the recall was over “Autopilot issues.”

What the average consumer may not realize is that this “recall” isn’t a typical recall and that it’s an issue that is easily fixed. Usually, when the average consumer thinks of auto recalls, they think that they have to return the vehicle for either their money back or a loaner until the original is repaired.

In the case of Tesla’s recent recall, this is not what’s happening. The Reuters article, which is paywalled, briefly noted that this wasn’t an actual recall — it involves an over-the-air software update. That’s it. Twitter user Ray4Tesla found the report the article cited and shared the translation on Twitter.

The document, issued by the China State Administration for Market Regulation, stated that Tesla recalled some of its imported and domestic made-in-Chine Models 3 and Y vehicles. It also said that Tesla would contact its customers through the Tesla Service Center to upgrade their vehicles at no cost to them.

The issue, the document noted, would likely cause the driver to accidentally activate the active cruise function. The document described several scenarios in which this could happen and pointed out that it could lead the driver to misjudge their control of the vehicle leading to an accident.

Ray4Tesla also noted that Tesla proactively issued the recall, rather than a regulator finding an issue and requiring it.

Tesla’s decision to take recall measures was to eliminate any potential safety hazards. No one has to give up their car and wait forever to have it fixed.

Autopilot Is Not At Fault Here

The Bloomberg piece alluded to the fact that Autopilot was a concern in this case. The real issue is that Tesla wanted to make sure it couldn’t easily be activated. However, many will see these headlines and without reading the article just assume the worst.

The “recall” is just another example of Tesla’s value on safety as its number one focus when designing vehicles. In the below tweet, Elon was replying to a customer who was involved in a horrible crash that probably would have killed someone had their car not have been the safest one ever tested by the NHTSA. In yet another case, we see Tesla taking safety extra seriously.

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