Tesla asked to provide more info amid NHTSA power steering loss probe

Credit: Tesla Asia/X

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is asking Tesla to produce additional information surrounding complaints about the power steering system of 2023 Model 3 and Model Y vehicles. The NHTSA has given Tesla until July 24, 2024 to respond to its information requests. 

As noted in an Automotive News report, the NHTSA initially opened a preliminary evaluation into the matter last July following reports that some 2023 Model 3 and Model Y vehicles were experiencing power steering issues. The NHTSA upgraded its Tesla power steering system probe into an engineering analysis in February.

The NHTSA’s letter to Tesla, which was sent earlier this week, noted that its Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) received 115 reports about the matter. So far, the NHTSA’s probe into Tesla’s power steering system issues covers 334,569 Model 3 and Model Y vehicles from the 2023 model year.  

The NHTSA’s safety probe involves a number of steps. They initially start as preliminary evaluations, which typically involve agency engineers requesting information from affected manufacturers. The information typically involves data on complaints, injuries, and warranty claims. At this stage, manufacturers like Tesla could present their views about the alleged issues. They can also issue a recall for affected vehicles. 

Following the evaluation phase, the NHTSA would either close the investigation or move on to the next stage. Provided that a safety defect is indeed determined, the NHTSA could issue a recall request letter to the manufacturer. 

Tesla’s recalls have received considerable attention in the automotive sector, partly because the automaker has demonstrated the capability to address most of its recalls through over-the-air software updates. However, Tesla is not immune to hardware-related recalls, as evidenced by the Cybertruck’s accelerator pedal recall, which was fixed physically by service employees. 

The NHTSA’s letter about its information request on Tesla’s potential power steering system issues can be viewed below.

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Tesla asked to provide more info amid NHTSA power steering loss probe
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