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Tesla just recalled one-third of all the cars it’s ever produced

A software glitch means the power window could close on people’s fingers while automatically retracting. Tesla plans an over-the-air update.

Tesla just recalled one-third of all the cars it’s ever produced
[Source Photos: Getty and umberto/Unsplash]

Today, Tesla warned electric vehicle owners that if they’re betting people, the odds are pretty decent—about than 1 in 3—that their car has a glitch that could cause the power window to close on their fingers while automatically retracting.

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The U.S. government’s auto-safety regulator, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), warns if the window detects an obstruction, it may “exert more force than [permitted] before retracting,” and also “retract less than the distance required” by law. The agency adds this increases the “risk of a pinching injury to the occupant.”

The carmaker responded by agreeing to recall, in a notice released today, nearly 1.1 million EVs under all four Tesla models—the S, 3, X, and Y. Which exact years vary model to model, but they span from 2017 until 2022. Tesla has produced just over 3 million cars since first launching the S in 2012.

In the recall, Tesla says it plans to fix this problem with a so-called over-the-air update, which is akin to how an iPhone bug gets resolved, not an issue requiring a Tesla service center visit.

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As the top EV company, Tesla is seemingly always breaking its last sales record, but constantly also doing so while its trendy cars are plagued by yet another round of troubling software glitches and recalls—almost like they’re actively searching for ways to endanger their owners, like Elon Musk’s very own fleet of Christines.

Tesla has had to issue at least 10 recalls in the past 10 months. At this point, if you own the wrong Tesla and haven’t updated it, you might be driving a car that could decide to not tell you your seat belt came unfastened, not defrost your windshield properly, refuse to deploy the airbag if the windows were rolled down, disobey stop signs, or even careen into first responders’ vehicles at crash sites where there were emergency lights and cones. In December, the carmaker recalled 356,000 Model 3s because the rear-view camera could be damaged by opening and closing the trunk, and 110,000 Model Ss because the front hood might open all by itself. Tesla told the NHTSA that the defects only affected an estimated 1% of those Model 3s, and 14% of the Model Ss.

However, 100% of the 1.1 million Teslas identified in Thursday’s recall are believed to be affected.

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