Tesla Issues a Recall of More Than 2 Million Vehicles Due to Safety Concerns

Beep, beep: Watch out, there are technical issues with the “self-driving” cars.

A Tesla stands after an accident in front of the destroyed entrance of a hardware store.

Kai Eckhardt/AP

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.

Everyone’s favorite “self-driving” car is experiencing technical issues…again. On Wednesday, Tesla issued a recall for over 2 million vehicles due to reported insufficiencies in the software designed to monitor a driver’s attention while using the Autopilot function. It comes after a two-year investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration of over 1,000 crashes involving the self-driving function. A recent Washington Post story also detailed at least eight Tesla crashes on roads where Autopilot should not have been engaged. 

If you own one of the following models, according to NHTSA, your car could experience technical difficulties:

  • TESLA/MODEL 3/2017-2023
  • TESLA/MODEL S/2012-2023
  • TESLA/MODEL X/2016-2023
  • TESLA/MODEL Y/2020-2023

Thankfully, there appears to be an easy fix: a software update that the company will reportedly provide free of charge. However, this recall is just one more bullet point in the long list of safety issues involving vehicles over the past few years. As my former colleague Abigail Weinberg reported last year, Tesla’s Autopilot function has been linked to multiple deaths. 

In 2022, the NHSTA reported that Tesla made up over 68 percent of the 392 crashes involving vehicles with an advanced driver assistance system. On December 10, the Washington Post claimed that issues with the car’s “Autosteer” function—an element of the self-driving Autopilot function—go beyond driver inattention, citing dash cam footage from a 2019 crash showing a Tesla “blowing through a stop sign, a blinking light and five yellow signs warning that the road ends.”  In a statement released on X, Tesla called the Post’s claims “egregious in its misstatements.” Neither the company nor its CEO, Elon Musk, have publicly responded to the recall.

AN IMPORTANT UPDATE

We’re falling behind our online fundraising goals and we can’t sustain coming up short on donations month after month. Perhaps you’ve heard? It is impossibly hard in the news business right now, with layoffs intensifying and fancy new startups and funding going kaput.

The crisis facing journalism and democracy isn’t going away anytime soon. And neither is Mother Jones, our readers, or our unique way of doing in-depth reporting that exists to bring about change.

Which is exactly why, despite the challenges we face, we just took a big gulp and joined forces with The Center for Investigative Reporting, a team of ace journalists who create the amazing podcast and public radio show Reveal.

If you can part with even just a few bucks, please help us pick up the pace of donations. We simply can’t afford to keep falling behind on our fundraising targets month after month.

Editor-in-Chief Clara Jeffery said it well to our team recently, and that team 100 percent includes readers like you who make it all possible: “This is a year to prove that we can pull off this merger, grow our audiences and impact, attract more funding and keep growing. More broadly, it’s a year when the very future of both journalism and democracy is on the line. We have to go for every important story, every reader/listener/viewer, and leave it all on the field. I’m very proud of all the hard work that’s gotten us to this moment, and confident that we can meet it.”

Let’s do this. If you can right now, please support Mother Jones and investigative journalism with an urgently needed donation today.

payment methods

AN IMPORTANT UPDATE

We’re falling behind our online fundraising goals and we can’t sustain coming up short on donations month after month. Perhaps you’ve heard? It is impossibly hard in the news business right now, with layoffs intensifying and fancy new startups and funding going kaput.

The crisis facing journalism and democracy isn’t going away anytime soon. And neither is Mother Jones, our readers, or our unique way of doing in-depth reporting that exists to bring about change.

Which is exactly why, despite the challenges we face, we just took a big gulp and joined forces with The Center for Investigative Reporting, a team of ace journalists who create the amazing podcast and public radio show Reveal.

If you can part with even just a few bucks, please help us pick up the pace of donations. We simply can’t afford to keep falling behind on our fundraising targets month after month.

Editor-in-Chief Clara Jeffery said it well to our team recently, and that team 100 percent includes readers like you who make it all possible: “This is a year to prove that we can pull off this merger, grow our audiences and impact, attract more funding and keep growing. More broadly, it’s a year when the very future of both journalism and democracy is on the line. We have to go for every important story, every reader/listener/viewer, and leave it all on the field. I’m very proud of all the hard work that’s gotten us to this moment, and confident that we can meet it.”

Let’s do this. If you can right now, please support Mother Jones and investigative journalism with an urgently needed donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate