Tesla just issued a “partial recall” for its Model S sedan. Per the company blog, some Model S vehicles made between May 10, 2013 and June 8, 2013 might have a defect in the mounting bracket for the left hand latch of the second row. Thus a recall is in place to strengthen this part.
It’s a small recall. It’s just a rear seat belt. The news is hardly a blip on most car websites. But this is the first recall for the Model S. And with this news, Tesla is showing the rest of the car industry the proper way to talk to customers.
Recalls are huge to-dos for car makers. Ask Jeep. The Chrysler division is currently under fire for millions of Jeeps that have a high risk of, well, catching fire. After months of consumer outrage and pressure from safety groups, Jeep issued a voluntary recall to install a trailer hitch to better protect the vehicle. This recall will no doubt cost the company a fortune, but exploding gas tanks is bad for business.
It’s highly likely that Jeep was aware of the issue before the NHTSA started investigating claims in 2010. That’s how the car establishment works. Recalls are dictated by a spreadsheet weighing the cost of a recall verse that of lives lost.
Capitalism for the win!
If you see something, say something. And that’s what Tesla is doing. Elon Musk’s car startup is a master of public relations, but it’s also doing a lot of things that’s right for the consumer.
Like the 2010 Roadster recall, Tesla will contact affected Model S owners to arrange for service. This time around, though, the service needs to be conducted in a service center, so Tesla will pick up the Model S, fix the issue and return it to the owner.
Try that with your Jeep.