Tuesday, 22 January, 2019

Tesla Model S recalled for power steering issue

Elon Musk Getty Images Elon Musk Getty Images
Ginger Lawrence | 31 March, 2018, 05:52

The company announced on March 29 that it will voluntarily recall 123,000 Model S sedans to fix a bolt created to assist with power steering.

Tesla said it had observed the defect "only in very cold climates" where vehicles contend with road salt.

A Tesla spokesperson said Thursday that the planned shutdown of the Model S and Model X production line is now occurring only on Friday, not both days, and said that the pause is unrelated to Model 3 production targets. It's stock tanked on a credit downgrade by Moody's, Model 3 production concerns and an investigation into fatal Model X vehicle crash. The National Transportation Safety Board is now investigating the crash.

At launch, the S equipped with an 85 kWh lithium-ion battery pack had a range of 265 miles (426 km), more than the Tesla Roadster and enough to make the Model S the electric auto with the greatest range on the market.

If the bolts fail, the driver is still able to steer the auto, but increased force is required due to loss or reduction of power assist. This would make it harder to steer in traffic and while parking the auto. Alternatively, if Tesla taps the markets via a stock sale, the dilution likely will drive the stock down further.

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Tesla will release its first-quarter production and delivery totals shortly after the new quarter starts on Sunday, April 1.

Tesla's stock sank almost 4 per cent during after-hours trading on Thursday after the recall announcement.

Today it announced a recall affecting every Model S built before April 2016. However, they claim that it will not affect control at high speed. The company says it will contact affected customers and schedule service appointments. Tesla has emphasised that the recall is wholly voluntary and not a response to regulatory demands or customer complaints. The retrofit will typically take around an hour. According to a Tesla blog post about the accident, "We have never seen this level of damage to a Model X in any other crash".

The Wall Street Journal also reported this week that Tesla burned through $3.4 billion of a shrinking pot of cash last year, increasing investors' worries that it will either run out of cash or be forced to stage another equity offer this coming year.