March 4, 2024

Two mechanics work on a Tesla.

Photo: Bob Henry/UCG/Universal Images Group via Getty Images (Getty Images)

In the court of public opinion, more charges are coming against America’s favorite electric vehicle maker. Reuters do report that two US senators, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut and Ed Markey of Massachusetts, are telling Elon Musk directly that they want Tesla to recall components with frequent faults that it blames on customer and user error. The letters come up in response A Reuters investigation which found that the company knew the problems were due to manufacturing and engineering problems.

One Tesla customer told Reuters that the suspension on his brand new Model Y, with just 115 miles on the odometer, fell apart when he turned a corner. He also said Tesla refused to pay the $14,000 repair bill.

“We are appalled that you would blame your customers for these failures,” the Blumenthal and Markey letter reads. “It is unacceptable that Tesla would not only try to shift the responsibility for the substandard quality of its vehicles to the people who buy them, but would also make the same flawed argument to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Tesla, which sells more than half of all electric vehicles in the US according to Kelly Blue Book, declined to comment to Reuters during the investigation and did not immediately respond to Quartz’s request for comment.

🍒 A recalled cherry on top

Earlier this month, Tesla had to reach out the largest US vehicle recall of the yearaffecting almost every car that has ever put it on American roads, because the NHTSA felt that Tesla’s autopilot was too lenient with drivers who took their hands off the wheel and eyes off the road.

Blumenthal and Markey were also troubled by this issue when they wrote in a previous letter to the Federal Trade Commission that “Tesla and Mr. Musk’s repeated overstatements of their vehicle’s capabilities — despite clear and frequent warnings — show a deeply troubling disregard for the safety of those on the road and demand real accountability.”

📚 Related stories

Tesla has finally disclosed the extent of its carbon emissions

Tesla is suing two employees over a massive data breach

Tesla investors worry that Elon Musk enjoys operating “above the law.”

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