US government mulls request to recall all Teslas to add missing safety feature

Washington, D.C. May 21, 2023 – The U.S. government’s auto safety regulator is examining a request to recall all Teslas currently on the road to add an allegedly missing safety feature to prevent drivers from accidentally accelerating while parking. Doing so increases the risk of a crash.

This is the second petition of its kind. If it leads to a recall, it could affect over 1.6 million vehicles.

The list includes:

  • 2017 – 2023 Tesla Model 3
  • 2013 – 2023 Tesla Model S
  • 2013 – 2023 Tesla Model X
  • 2013 – 2023 Tesla Model Y

Petition summary  

On April 7, 2023, the regulator, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), started examining a petition submitted by Greek engineer Costas Lakafossis.

The petition alleges that Teslas have an “increased likelihood” of the so-called sudden unintended acceleration events (SUAs)  – which is when the driver hits gas instead of brake – because they are programmed to brake automatically and allow the driver to shift into Reverse without application of the brake pedal.

The feature  – which Lakafossis calls a “dangerous ‘party trick'” – may confuse the driver and should be eliminated, according to the petition. Instead, all Teslas should be fitted with a brake shift mechanism.

What is a brake shift mechanism?

The brake shift interlock mechanism is software or a device that prevents the car from shifting into Drive or Reverse until the driver presses the brake pedal. It was first introduced in the 1980s as a safety feature. It proved successful at preventing accidents caused by sudden and unintended acceleration and became mandatory on all new cars in 2010. 

The petitioner argues that there is no reason why Teslas should be allowed to not have this essential safety feature.

Previous investigation points to driver error

To back up his claims, Lakafossis points to a previous NHTSA investigation on the back of another petition. In that case, the petitioner alleged that Teslas had an unidentified “defect” that caused them to suddenly accelerate. However, upon analyzing close to 250 crashes the previous petitioner attributed to the defect, NHTSA found that the majority of them were caused not a technical fault but by “pedal misapplication” by the driver. 

Other Tesla recalls and investigations

Tesla is currently subject to another NHTSA investigation over multiple incidents of their cars colliding with first responder vehicles stationed at a scene of pre-existing crashes. The investigation was upgraded to the engineering analysis in summer of last year after discovery of additional crashes, as reported.

The most recent large-scale Tesla recall occurred in February 2023 when the manufacturer recalled over 350,000 cars that were prone to breaking traffic rules when in the self-driving mode, also as reported.

Is your vehicle part of a recall?

If this petition results in a Tesla brake interlock recall, it could affect more than 1.5 million vehicles. To do a Tesla recall check, please use MotorSafety’s free vehicle lookup tool.

Bojan PopicUS government mulls request to recall all Teslas to add missing safety feature

Tesla recalls self-driving cars that may break traffic rules

Austin, TX – February 25, 2023 – Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) has recalled 362,758 self-driving cars that may drive unsafely, increasing the risk of an accident.

This recall is a result of a U.S. government investigation.

The following vehicles are affected by this recall: 

  • 2017 – 2023 Tesla Model 3 
  • 2016 – 2023 Tesla Model S
  • 2016 – 2023 Tesla Model X
  • 2020 – 2023 Tesla Model Y   

Recall summary  

All listed vehicles are equipped with a beta version of full self-driving software, which can take control of the car’s steering, acceleration and braking. 

When this mode is activated in the affected cars, they may commit traffic violations. This includes speeding, going through yellow lights, inappropriate lane switching or not stopping at stop signs for long enough. 

Recall risks

A vehicle that breaks traffic rules is more likely to crash, upping the risk of injury. 

Warning signs

The software is set up to warn the driver if it cannot safely operate the vehicle. If this happens, the driver should take over the control. 

Background of the recall

The defect that caused this recall was identified by the U.S. government auto safety regulator, the National Transportation Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA), last month as part of an ongoing investigation into Tesla collisions with emergency vehicles. You can find more information about the investigation here. 

There have been 18 warranty claims related to the recall. 

Other Tesla recalls

Some of the listed electric SUVs may have been affected by a recent Tesla Model X recall caused by airbags that may deploy incorrectly

Among previous Tesla Model 3 recalls, the one caused by faulty tail lamps, which took place in November 2022, is the most recent

The repair

Tesla will fix the issue by upgrading the vehicles’ software free of charge. The update will be done over-the-air, meaning that there is no need to take the car back to the dealer.

Vehicle owners will get letters with more information on  April 15, 2023. 

Is your vehicle part of this recall?

This Tesla full self-driving software recall is affecting more than 350,000 cars. To do a Tesla recall check and see if yours is one of them, use MotorSafety’s free vehicle lookup tool.

Bojan PopicTesla recalls self-driving cars that may break traffic rules

Tesla recalls Model 3 and Model Y cars over faulty tail lamps 

Austin, TX – November 26, 2022 – Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) has issued a recall for 321,628 vehicles due to a problem with the tail lamps. One or both of the lamps at the rear could fail to light up, increasing the risk of an accident.

The recall covers the following models: 

  • 2023 Tesla Model 3
  • 2020 – 2023 Tesla Model Y

Recall summary

In the recalled vehicles, due to a firmware problem, one or both of the tail lamps may fail to illuminate consistently

Recall risks

Tail lamps that do not illuminate as expected reduce the vehicle’s visibility, which could increase the risk of a collision.  

Other Tesla recalls

A Tesla Model X airbag recall was issued in mid-November over airbags that could fail to deploy properly in low-speed crashes.

In November, Tesla recalled 24,064 2017-2022 Model 3 cars over seatbelts that fail to restrain occupants in the event of a crash, increasing the risk of injury.   

In June, the U.S. government upgraded its investigation into problems regarding Tesla’s autopilot feature that caused vehicles to crash into emergency responders attending to a prior, unrelated accident. The probe potentially covers 830,000 Tesla vehicles.

The repair

Tesla will use an over-the-air (OTA) update to correct the problem with the firmware in the affected vehicles, ensuring that the tail lamps will operate as intended. These updates are automatic and do not require owners to bring their cars to a Tesla service center. The timeline of the update is not clear.

Owners of affected vehicles will be notified on or around January 14, 2023.  

Is your vehicle part of this recall?

More than 321,000 vehicles are affected by this Tesla tail lamp issue. To see if your vehicle is among them, or to check for 2023 Tesla Model X recalls, Tesla airbag recalls and more,  run a Tesla recall check using MotorSafety’s free vehicle lookup tool.

Joseph EstabilloTesla recalls Model 3 and Model Y cars over faulty tail lamps 

Tesla recalls Model 3s with unsecured seat belts

Austin, TX – November 11, 2022 – Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) is recalling 24,064 2017-2022 Tesla Model 3 electric cars, whose seat belts may not restrain occupants in the event of a crash. This ups the risk of injury. 

Recall summary

In the listed vehicles, the second-row left seat buckle and the middle seat anchor are held in place with one bolt. When servicing the vehicles, technicians failed to re-assemble the components correctly. This may result in the seat belts in the second row being loose.

Recall risks

A loose or otherwise defective seat belt might not hold the passenger in place if there is a crash, increasing the risk of an injury. 

Warning signs

If not reassembled properly, one or both of these components will be loose. 

Other Tesla Model 3 recalls

You can find comprehensive information about all Tesla recalls that took place in 2022 in this article

Additionally, some of 2017 Tesla Model 3 cars, as well as many others, were recalled last month because their windows may malfunction and catch passenger limbs

The repair

Dealers will inspect the seat belt anchoring points on these vehicles and rearrange them correctly if needed. This repair is free of charge. 

In addition, to stop this from happening in the future, Tesla has updated their service procedure manuals. 

Owners will be notified on December 20, 2022. 

Is your vehicle part of this recall?

Nearly 25,000 electric cars are recalled over this Tesla seat belt issue. To do a Tesla recall check and see if yours is one of them, use MotorSafety’s free vehicle lookup tool

Bojan PopicTesla recalls Model 3s with unsecured seat belts

Is your Tesla subject to recall?

Washington, D.C. – October 16, 2022 – Since the beginning of 2022, Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) has had nine recalls, in total affecting a total of 3.8 million vehicles. Besides the recalls, the company is also subject to three ongoing investigations by the U.S. government’s auto safety regulator over several issues, with one concerning Tesla’s collisions with emergency vehicles.

Malfunctioning rearview cameras 

The first Tesla recall came in early January, affecting more than 350,000 2017-2020 Tesla Model 3 cars. This was caused by malfunctioning rearview cameras.  

In-your-face hoods

Also in January, an issue with hoods that may open while driving caused a recall of the 2014-2020 Tesla Model S cars. Almost 120,000 vehicles were affected on this occasion.

Cars not stopping 

In February, it was discovered that some Tesla cars might come to a rolling stop at a stop sign while on autopilot. This maneuver is not only dangerous but also illegal, so the software on these vehicles was updated to prevent it from happening. More than 50,000 cars mid-size and luxury cars were affected.

The seat belt chime not going off  

That same month, there was a large scale recall caused by the absence of an audible seat belt chime. The problem was rectified by updating software in more than 800,000 cars, including Model 3, Model S, Model Y and Model X.  

Frosted-up windshields

On the heels of the seat belt chime issue the company also issued a recall for over 26,000 cars were recalled because their windshields would not defrost. The issue was once more solved with a software update. 

Failure to warn pedestrians  

The Pedestrian Warning System, or PWS, whose job is to make the car more noticeable to nearby pedestrians, caused two recalls this year. 

First, the Boombox function, which substitutes a traditional horn, was found to interfere with the PWS. This was remedied in February 2022 with a software update that disabled the Boombox while in Drive, Reverse or Neutral. 

But even after that, the issue was still present when the Summon feature was used to maneuver the car, resulting in a second recall in April 2022. More than half a million vehicles were recalled over these Tesla software issues.

Airbags not deploying

A batch of 2021-2022 Tesla Model X vehicles, whose side curtain airbags would fail to deploy in certain cases, was recalled in April 2022. Dealers are set to fix the issue by replacing the affected airbags with updated ones. 

Speedometer and infotainment display woes 

On two separate occasions in May, Tesla recalled some of its vehicles over safety features that were not working properly. 

First, there was an issue with certain 2018–2022 Tesla Model 3 compact sedans, whose speedometers were not showing the unit of speed. These Tesla electrical issues affected approximately 50,000 cars.   

A few days later, a range of models was recalled over an issue with their Infotainment systems, which could stop working. If that were to happen, the driver would not have access to the car’s vital functions.  

Power windows that may injure occupants 

Just recently, in October 2022, Tesla had to recall more than a million of its cars over an issue with power windows. On affected vehicles, which included all popular models, the window would not stop rolling up when it encountered an obstacle. Tesla solved the problem with a software update. 


Aside from the recalls, The regulator, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) is investigating the manufacturer over three separate issues which may result in additional recalls.

In January 2022, NHTSA opened an investigation into potentially distracting video game features available on all Tesla models made after 2017

Just a month later, in February 2022, the regulator started looking into reports of  Tesla cars that would reportedly brake by themselves while on autopilot. The cars involved in this investigation included the 2021-2022 Tesla Model 3 and Model Y. 

Lastly, there is an ongoing investigation over several alarming cases of cars crashing into stationary emergency vehicles while on autopilot. In June 2022, the NHTSA investigators took this to the next level, trying to find out the root of the problem

Is your vehicle part of a recall?

Up-to-date, over 3.8 million Tesla vehicles were recalled in 2022 over various Tesla issues. To do a Tesla recall check and see if yours is affected by any of them, use MotorSafety’s free vehicle lookup tool

Bojan PopicIs your Tesla subject to recall?

Tesla recalls Model X and Model S over torn airbags

Palo Alto, CA – November 27, 2021 – Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) has recalled 7,600 luxury electric cars whose driver-side airbags may tear during deployment. The issue increases the risk of driver injury in a crash.

The recall includes:

  • 2021 Tesla Model X
  • 2021 Tesla Model S

Recall summary  

Tesla’s Model X and Model S recall centers around an issue with the door that covers the driver-side airbag compartment.

Due to a supplier error, the airbag door may have a piece sticking out that catches on the airbag as it goes off, which could cause the airbag to tear.

Recall risks

Like a leaky air mattress, an airbag with a hole will not provide the same firm cushion to protect the driver during a crash. This increases the risk of injury to the driver. Read more about the importance of properly functioning airbags in this article about a recent Volvo recall.

The affected part is driver airbag assembly with part numbers 1625769-72-D and ​​1625769-71-D. 

The repair

Tesla dealers will replace the driver-side airbags in all the recalled cars for free. The new airbags will have a reinforced patch to prevent it from tearing. Owners will be notified about the recall by mail starting on January 7, 2022.

Recent Tesla recalls

There was a Tesla Model S recall earlier this month due to the possibility of cars braking unexpectedly on their own or activating false forward collision warning. The recall was limited to “fully self-driving cars” and also included Model 3, Model X and Model Y vehicles. Most vehicles involved in that recall have already been fixed thanks to an over-the-air (OTA) update. 

To read more about this and other recent Tesla recalls, please visit the following article.

Is your vehicle part of this recall?

This Tesla 2021 recall includes over 7,500 vehicles. To do a Tesla recall check, use MotorSafety’s free vehicle lookup tool.

Rebecca RandTesla recalls Model X and Model S over torn airbags