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First Tesla Model X recall issued over faulty seats

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Tesla has just announced the first recall for the Model X and, voluntary safety campaign matters aside, this brings an important figure on the table – a total of 2,700 USA customers have already taken delivery of their electric SUVs.

The recliner is supposed to serve as the locking hinge that lets vehicle owners fold the third row seat back forward.

Affecting Model Xs built before 26 March this year, it is understood to apply only to vehicles in the States.

The Tesla Model S electric vehicle, which went into production in June 2012, is getting its first styling updates in nearly four years.

The Silicon Valley company said it was recalling the Model Xs after the seats failed a strength test in the European Union.

Jon McNeil, Tesla’s president of sales, service and delivery, told reporters that failure was due to a manufacturing flaw by the outside vendor that makes the seat backs. The company is also reportedly set to introduce a 100 kWh battery option for Model S this week, along with several tweaks in the front-end design.

Tesla says that there’s a risk for the third row seat recliner to unlock during a crash. The Model 3 pre-orders involve a deposit of $1,000 by prospective buyers of the vehicle which is expected to cost $35,000.

The supplier at fault is Australia-based Futuris, according to a Tesla spokesperson, although it’s unclear which supplier (in-house or otherwise) will produce the new seats.

Although the recall is voluntary, Model X owners should definitely take advantage of the opportunity. “We have worked with our supplier to develop a new recliner design with improved quality that resolved the issue”, a company spokesperson said via email.

Tesla expects the replacement parts to be ready over the next five weeks.

Kim Earnest

The author Kim Earnest

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