Alert for Chinese motorists. Electric car giant Tesla will “recall” more than 285,000 cars from the Middle Kingdom market after an investigation showed their assisted driving software could cause collisions, the Chinese government announced on Friday (June 25th). Tesla, which said the alert affected some of the Model 3s and Model Ys, either imported or made in China, will contact affected owners and replace their software with a newer version free of charge.
It’s the latest in trouble for the pioneer of the self-driving car, which has been investigated by Chinese authorities after several fatal crashes in recent months. “Due to problems with the speed control system (…), the driver can easily start it by mistake,” the authorities noted in their report. “This can cause a sudden increase in speed, and, in extreme cases, cause a collision.”
The automaker has also had to deal with numerous complaints on social media from its Chinese customers about quality and service issues. It culminated in a protest at the Shanghai Auto Show, widely reported by the media and social networks, by a customer who said she almost died due to a failure of the braking system on her vehicle.
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The speed control system, which is supposed to “control the vehicle’s speed to follow that of surrounding traffic,” is an important part of the assisted driving feature, according to the Tesla site. The American company, which was authorized, which is rare in China, to build a factory in Shanghai without a Chinese partner, is very popular in China, where it sells a quarter of its cars. The announcement of the recall caused Friday in the United States a drop of nearly 8% of the action Telsa.
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