shuttlecocks come off, NHTSA launches investigation

Faced with several cases where owners of Tesla Model Y have found themselves with the steering wheel completely detached, the NHTSA has decided to open yet another investigation against the automaker.

tesla model Y flying survey
Credits: Tesla

And one more. And yes, we have just learned that the NHTSA, the American federal agency in charge of road safety, has opened yet another investigation against Tesla. This time, the institution has decided to focus on potential design flaws in Model Y steering wheels.

In documents published this Wednesday, March 8, 2023, NHTSA said it is aware of two separate incidents involving Tesla Model Ys sold in 2023 and during which the steering wheel of the SUV had completely detached from the steering column.

NHTSA investigates defective Model Y steering wheels

The preliminary evaluation of the NHTSA was opened on March 4, and according to the institution, its investigations concern for the moment no less than 120,000 vehicles. In the two cases mentioned above, it has been proven that both vehicles were delivered without the retaining bolt which is used to attach the steering wheel to the steering column. Moreover, the two SUVs were new (with a few kilometers on the clock) at the time of the incidents.

One of the complaints mentioned by the NHTSA stems from a tweet that went viral, which we also mentioned in our columns in January 2023. As a reminder, a father recounted his terrible misadventure on the social network.

When he had just picked up his brand new Model Y after long months of waiting, he and his family set out on the highway, heading home. After only a few kilometers, the steering wheel suddenly comes off. Fortunately, the driver manages to avoid the worst and pull over.

In this affair, Tesla had not arranged his image since the brand had the nerve to charge 103 dollars to the user to carry out the repairs… Before finally changing his mind and provide a replacement Model Y to the family.

A survey that adds to a long list

For now, a massive recall is not yet on the agenda. NHTSA will try first to examine the frequency of the problem and determine the potential number of affected vehicles. As mentioned above, Tesla recalls have been linked in recent weeks.

At the beginning of March 2023, the brand recalled several thousand Model Y for loose bolts in the seats in particular. It should also be remembered that Tesla’s Autopilot is still at the center of several investigations, carried out by the United States Department of Justice and by the NHTSA.

Source : The Verge

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