Tesla faces NHTSA investigation over steering wheels detaching from Model Y vehicles

According to Techcrunch, the NHTSA is presently investigating incidents of steering wheel detachment while in motion in 2023 Tesla Model Y vehicles. This examination arose after two owners of the affected cars lodged complaints. The investigation’s goal is to analyze the issue’s frequency, scope, and manufacturing processes and will involve assessing 121,089 Model Y vehicles.

NHTSA officials stated that the steering wheels of both cars lacked the retaining bolt that links the steering wheel to the steering column. During operation, the friction fit that connected the steering wheel and column splines ultimately failed.

To address the problem, Tesla allegedly carried out an “end of line” repair on both vehicles, which required the removal and reinstallation of the steering wheel. The 2023 Model Y has already been subject to four recalls, including issues with taillights and suspension fasteners. The most recent recall affects all Tesla cars equipped with Full Self-Driving (FSD) software, which federal safety regulators discovered caused dangerous driving behavior at intersections. This recall is applicable to up to 362,758 cars with FSD software.

The investigation aims to identify the primary cause of the steering wheel detachment incidents and identify any safety flaws related to the Model Y’s manufacturing. The incident adds to Tesla’s history of safety concerns and worries regarding the firm’s communication and transparency with regulators and the public. To ensure consumer safety, Tesla must address any safety flaws discovered, enhance its communication with regulators and the public, and improve its quality control processes.

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