Glitchy Tesla Software Leads to Recall of Almost Half a Million Tesla Model 3 and Model S EVs

  • Tesla recalls 475,000 Model 3 and Model S units
  • Every Tesla Model 3 in existence is affected by the recall
  • Tesla Model S hoods can unexpectedly fly open

Every single Tesla Model 3 has been recalled. 119,009 Tesla Model S EVs have been recalled for the same. The reason? Faulty front trunks and glitchy rearview cameras. Tesla’s recall has reached 475,000 of the luxury EVs. In the past, issues like these have been remedied with a simple over-the-air update. But that may not be the case for these recalls.

A line of Tesla Model 3 EVs outside a Tesla factory in China
Every Model 3 produced in recent years is subject to recall | Ding Ting via Getty Images

The Tesla Model 3 has a huge problem

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The details on the Model 3 recall are brief. The NHTSA says that “the rearview camera cable harness may be damaged by the opening and closing of the trunk lid, preventing the rearview camera image from displaying.” Unfortunately for the EV, that sounds a lot like a mechanical issue that will need to be remedied, but not a software one. It’s a shame, as Elon Musk’s and Tesla’s integration of over-the-air (OTA) updates has changed the way we do recalls.

Now, their biggest tool may not even be on the table for this Tesla recall. Regrettably, that means each and every Tesla Model 3 will need to be physically repaired. The logistics of such a huge recall are daunting, to say the least. Predictably, Tesla has not commented on the recall as of this time.

Tesla has several open recalls

A Tesla Model 3 in a service center in Hamburg, Germany
Typically, an over-the-air update can solve software issues like this | Christian Charisius via Getty Images

As for the Tesla Model S, it’s another trunk issue. This time, the Tesla recall centers around the front trunk, or “frunk.” The NHTSA says that the latch does not, well, latch. That could lead to the frunk opening “without warning and obstruct the driver’s visibility, increasing the risk of a crash.” In a worst-case scenario, this could happen on the highway or under other driving conditions.

If you own a Tesla Model S, we’d encourage you to triple-check your frunk before you set off. Should that frunk open up on you at speed, decelerating calmly but quickly is your best option. Hit your hazards and try to reach the side of the road as quickly and safely as possible. Unfortunately, Tesla has not provided any guidance on repairs. To be fair, both the Tesla Model 3 and Tesla Model S recalls are very recent, so check with your dealer regularly.

Are Teslas reliable?

A Tesla Model S, also affected by the Tesla recall, sits outside a dealership showroom
The Model S is also involved in the recall | Justin Sullivan via Getty Images

Frankly, this most recent string of recalls comes at a tough time for the EV automaker. Per CNBC, the NHTSA has recently pushed Elon Musk and co. to make a number of changes to their cars. Notably, Tesla no longer allows video games to be played while the car is in motion, and the NHTSA’s safety probe into Tesla driver assists is still ongoing.

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