Major Car Manufacturer Issues Recall Over 475,000 US Cars Due to Camera and Trunk Concerns

Tesla recalled almost half a million cars sold in the U.S. due to two technical defects that could increase the risks of accidents over time. The first affects the rearview camera in all Tesla Model 3 cars made between 2017 and 2020. The other involves the front trunk latches on the Model S cars.

Both voluntary recalls were filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Tesla dealerships and service centers were notified last week, reports CNN. The issue with the Model 3 rearview camera is caused by a cable that may separate after wear and tear, potentially cutting the camera feed. The recall affects all 356,309 Model 3 cars made between 2017 and 2020.

The Model S recall affects 119,009 vehicles. The issue stems from the front trunk latch, which could unexpectedly open, popping the hood while driving. Tesla started investigating the "frunk" issue in January after a driver's front trunk opened while driving. The investigation into the Model 3 camera issue began in June 2021. 

Tesla owners will receive letters about the issues in February. Tesla is aware of 2,301 warranty claims and 601 field reports related to the Model 3 issue as of mid-December, notes The New York Post. Tesla is not aware of crashes, injuries, or deaths linked to either issue, the NHTSA said.

This is the latest tech issue for Tesla's electric cars. In early December, CNBC reported that Tesla was replacing repeater cameras in the front fenders of hundreds of Model S, Model X, and Model 3 cars made in California without issuing a voluntary recall. According to internal documents obtained by CNBC, the cameras had faulty printed circuit boards (PCBs) inside, which could lead to the cameras failing unexpectedly. The repeater cameras are used for Tesla's driver assistance features, like Autopilot, Navigate on Autopilot and Smart Summon. This issue was first reported by Drive Tesla back in December 2020. Customers with this issue will be eligible for a "goodwill" repair that Tesla will pay for, reports CNBC. 

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The NHTSA is also investigating Tesla's decision to allow drivers to play games on car screens while the vehicle is in motion, reports CNBC. Tesla later agreed to end this feature. Tesla also recalled 135,000 vehicles in February under NHTSA pressure because the vehicles had touch screens that could fail, raising the possibility of a crash.