Tesla recalls over 285,000 vehicles in China, most of them locally made

Tesla recalls over 285,000 vehicles in China, most of them locally made

Tesla Inc. is recalling more than 285,000 passenger vehicles in China — including more than 90% of locally made vehicles sold by the company — because of safety risks associated with their cruise-control system, the country’s market regulator said.

The recall of the U.S. company’s automobiles came after an investigation into possible defects, which found that their cruise-control system could be accidentally activated and potentially result in an unexpected speed increase, the State Administration for Market Regulation said Saturday.

The recall includes 249,855 Model 3 sedans and Model Y compact crossover vehicles manufactured by Tesla’s Shanghai plant, as well as 35,665 imported Model 3 cars, the regulator said.

Affected Tesla

customers can upgrade their cruise-control software remotely without having to go to the store, according to the company and the market regulator. The regulator said it received a request from Tesla a few days earlier for the recall, which affects vehicles produced between December 2019 and June 2021.

“We apologize for the inconvenience caused by this recall to all car owners,” Tesla said through its official social-media account on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like platform. “Tesla will continue to improve safety in strict accordance with national requirements.”

The recalled autos manufactured in China account for 93.7% of all sold Tesla vehicles that were made locally at the company’s Shanghai plant, according to figures released by the China Passenger Car Association. Tesla doesn’t publish its own monthly sales or production figures.

In February, Tesla was summoned by Chinese authorities citing consumer complaints about quality issues in a rare rebuke for the company, the first foreign auto maker to operate a wholly owned plant in China. Chief Executive Elon Musk has also had to reassure Chinese officials and consumers that Tesla cars couldn’t be used to spy on China.

Until its recent difficulties, Tesla had overwhelmingly been seen as a prestigious brand in China, boosted by the popularity of Mr. Musk, who has said that China’s fast-growing market will become the company’s largest. China currently hosts Tesla’s only operational plant outside the U.S. The vehicle maker won approval for its Shanghai factory in 2018 despite the deterioration of U.S.-China trade relations under then-President Donald Trump.

An expanded version of this story appears on WSJ.com.