Tesla has agreed to recall nearly 135,000 vehicles after a federal regulator raised concerns about problems with the touch-screen displays in some of the company’s most expensive cars.
The company disagreed with a request made in January by the regulator, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, that it recall the cars, but it said that it would proceed “in the interests of efficiently resolving this matter and providing a better experience for the customer,” a Tesla executive said in a letter to the agency that was made public on Tuesday.
The recall affects Model S vehicles from 2012 to 2018 and Model X vehicles from 2016 to 2018. Those are the company’s flagship cars and can cost up to $100,000 or more.
At issue is a memory chip in the center display of the vehicles, which drivers use to control many aspects of their Teslas. The safety agency said when the chip wears out, it can cause the loss of certain functions, including turn signal lighting and the rearview camera display.
“As stated in our letter, the agency tentatively concluded that these vehicles contain a defect related to motor vehicle safety,” the regulator said in a statement. “Safety is NHTSA’s top priority, and timely recalls are crucial to ensuring the safety of drivers, passengers, and other road users.”
Tesla plans to notify owners of the affected vehicles and will replace the component for free, the regulator said. The recall is expected to begin on March 30.
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