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File photo of Tesla Model Y.
File photo of Tesla Model Y.

Tesla fights back against reports of suspension defect, blames China for recall

  • Tesla has denied any problems with the suspension set up of imported Model X and Model Y electric vehicles.
  • Tesla, however, is not going to dispute the recall orders issued in China.

Tesla has come out all guns blazing and said that there are no suspension defects in the Model S and Model X EVs imported by it in China and that the country is forcing an unnecessary recall here. More than 30,000 of these vehicles imported for the Chinese market have had to be recalled owing to the suspected defect but Tesla has now explained that there is no problem at all with these EVs.

Electrek reported that Tesla has clarified that its EVs do not have problems with the suspension systems, a view that could put it on a path of disagreement with Chinese authorities. Quoting from a letter sent by a Tesla official to US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NTHSA), the report said Tesla disagrees with the opinion of SAMR/DPAC - the Chinese road safety body.

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The letter further states that while Tesla has opted to not challenge the recall decision in China, the possible fault with the suspension units could be because of 'driver abuse.' "If the customer inputs an abuse load (e.g., curb impact, severe pothole strike, etc.), then the parts may be damaged, leading either to immediate failure or delayed failure from the compounding effects of the initial abuse and subsequent load input."

The possibility of such defects manifesting, however, are 0.05% outside of China and 0.1% in China, the letter further reads.

The recall is, however, expected to hit Tesla's image to an extent. The company is a key player in the global EV scene and has a firm grip in the Chinese market where it enjoys a massive fan following. Tesla's popularity here has not only meant rivals being confined to the sidelines in the EV game but local players also struggling to keep up in sales charts. Model 3 is, by far, the most popular Tesla product here and its local manufacturing along with a slew of incentives for EVs in China, have made it the segment leader by a mile. Model Y is almost ready for local manufacturing as well but the other offerings are imported for the Chinese customer.

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