Tesla recalls 11,000 Model X SUVs worldwide because of safety risk posed by faulty rear seats
No accidents have yet been reported in relation to the fault that triggered the voluntary recall
Tesla on Thursday said that it is recalling Model X sport utility vehicles to fix second-row seat-backs which might shift forward during crashes.
Internal testing revealed that cables in second-row fold-flat seats in 2016 and 2017 model year vehicles might need to be adjusted to “ensure the safety” of those riding inside, a Tesla spokesperson said.
“Although Tesla has not received reports of any issues or accidents relating to this condition, we will be conducting a voluntary recall to inspect the affected vehicles and confirm whether any adjustment is needed,” the statement said.
The number of Model X vehicles being recalled was estimated at 11,000, with only a small percentage expected to have the seat cable problem.
In messages sent to Model X owners, Tesla offered to tend to inspecting and adjusting seats using its mobile service, giving an option of bringing vehicles into service centres.
“Until then, there is no issue with continuing to drive your Model X,” the Tesla spokesperson said.
“We just ask that you temporarily avoid having two adults sit in the second row left and center seating positions at the same time.”
While Tesla cars have been met with high demand and glowing safety reviews, the Silicon Valley-based firm has struggled to crank models off the assembly line.
Tesla announced early this month that it missed its production target for the Model 3 sedan, the first mid-priced electric vehicle for the mass market in its lineup.
The electric car maker started taking reservations for its mass-market sedan in March 2016, which is priced at US$35,000 to start and is key to the company’s plans to expand market share.
The company said it has received some 450,000 pre-orders for the Model 3.
Tesla last week said it was delaying the planned launch of an electric transport truck, diverting resources to step up production of its Model 3 sedan and to produce batteries for storm-ravaged Puerto Rico.
Tesla last week also announced that it increased production of Model S and Model X vehicles to an all-time best quarter of 26,150 vehicles, and anticipated it would deliver 100,000 of the luxury models in 2017 - a third more than in 2016.
The Palo Alto, California-based firm recalled 2,700 Model X SUVs in the United States in April 2016 due to a faulty locking hinge in the third-row seats.
The company recalled 90,000 Model S sedans worldwide in 2015 over a possible defect in the front seat belt assembly and a year earlier had recalled 29,222 of the same model over a charging defect that posed a fire hazard.
Tesla’s shares were little changed at US$355.64 in extended trading in New York on Thursday.