Is There a Quality Assurance Issue at Tesla?


Tesla has been making cars that reflect modern trends in Technological advancement. Their vehicles are all-electric self-driving cars of the future that included a number of features other brands are trying to catch up with. Spearheaded by Elon Musk, Tesla has made an impact on the car market, giving electric vehicles a more modern desirable image than before.

There has unfortunately been some snags on the road for Tesla however. Tesla has recently recalled 135,000 Model S sedans and Model X SUVs, leaving Tesla car owners and potential buyers to question the quality assurance at Tesla.

 Many questions come up when thinking about making the move to electric, quality should not be one of them as Tesla needs to deliver a fine product to meet the expectations of a truly technologically current vehicle.

Touchscreen Recall

The recent recall fiasco occurred when the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that a chip on Tesla screens in 2012-2018 Models Ss and 2016-2018 Model Xs were prone to failure after about 4 years of driving. The failure occurs because the memory chip inside these tesla screens have limit to how much data they can store, which the cars store continuously while driving.

This means once the memory chip has used up all of it’s space, the screen is essentially useless and broken. The NHTSA found it a problem because this destroys access to the legally required rear camera and external turn signals.

Regulators then pushed Tesla to recall all the vehicles afflicted with the problem, to which Tesla at first objected. Tesla argued that the cars were not meant to be used for more than 5 or 6 years, meaning they might have been aware of this problem before selling these vehicles out. Tesla also argued that the cars were still safe when the screens died as well.

The NHTSA did not agree with Tesla, leading Tesla to voluntarily recall these vehicles. Tesla also offered upgraded replacement screens that are akin to those in more modern models for extra money from the buyer, but ultimately, the repair needed to fix the chip problem will be at Tesla’s expense.

This leads one to think. Did Tesla know about the problem and release the car anyway? Or did they not know about this severe issue of their cars? If it’s the latter Tesla needs to improve their quality assurance team to make sure they stop sending out faulty cars.

Past Issues

One mistake isn’t a big deal in the grand scheme of things, and Tesla seems to be making up for the problem through the recall. This isn’t however Tesla’s only mistake however; the company has had numerous problems with their vehicles that could lead people to question the quality and value of a Tesla.

One past issue tesla had was the problem with Model 3 bumpers. If you drove your Model 3 through a rainstorm, there was a chance your bumper would fall off. The quality of the bumper on a Model 3 was not so high, meaning they would detach easily. Having your bumper detach while driving could be terrible for anyone behind, making them get hit by your bumper, or cause them to swerve out of the way and potentially lose control of their vehicle and get into an accident.

Tesla handled this poorly by only offering people repairs if they suffered their bumper being damaged. There was no recall issued to fix this problem. Meaning if you bought a Model 3 you were stuck with the dangerous bumper and were probably terrified to drive in any rain.

If it’s not the bumper or screens, it’s the battery, the heart of an electric car, that has given Tesla much trouble in the past. Many reports have been made from Tesla’s older cars catching fire from the battery and Tesla has gotten lawsuits from it.

The batteries caught fire from small defects that could cause the battery cells to overheat and ignite highly flammable material around it. Tesla was also caught manipulating with the car’s software to reduce the chance of catching fire after reports started sprouting up.

All of this makes you wonder what is going on in Tesla headquarters. Why are they releasing potentially dangerous cars to the market? Tesla has based their brand on being futuristic and technology driven, but surely safety is the most important quality a car should have, not neat tech features.

The quality assurance at Tesla needs to improve or the brand will lose the loyalty and interest it has been seeing over the years. If steps aren’t taken to improve quality assurance, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Tesla’s competitors overtake them.

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