The NHTSA has launched yet another investigation into Tesla vehicles, this time over reports of multiple seatbelt failures in the company’s newer Model X vehicles.
According to NBC News, the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is currently investigating two separate incidents of seatbelt failures in newer Tesla Model X vehicles that were not related to crashes. This development raises questions about the security of Tesla’s well-known electric SUVs, with a potential impact on up to 50,000 vehicles.
Owners of two Model X vehicles complained to the NHTSA’s Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) about their front safety belts disengaging from the seat belt anchor pretensioner. The reported separations happened while operating Model X SUVs from 2022 and 2023. According to the investigators’ findings, the anchor linkages on both vehicles were not properly connected when they were delivered to their respective owners.
The “connection failure” occurred where the anchor and pretensioner meet, according to the investigation, which was launched on March 24. According to the NHTSA, the anchors “were not properly connected during assembly,” and were only held together by friction fit. When “the force exerted on the linkage overcame the resistance of the friction fit while the vehicles were in motion,” separations occurred.
Tesla has experienced problems with seatbelts before. More than 24,000 Model 3 vehicles were affected by a problem that required the automaker to recall them last year. Those errors were brought on by unrelated service center visits during which workers neglected to correctly reassemble the rear seat anchor.
While many of Tesla’s most recent recalls, including those involving its “crash risk” Full Self-Driving feature, illumination issues with the taillights, and noise-obscuring pedestrian warning issues, were caused by the vehicle software, an over-the-air software update cannot fix the current seatbelt problem. It is unclear what steps Tesla will need to take to address the issue and guarantee the safety of its Model X customers as the NHTSA investigation is still ongoing.
Read more at NBC News here.
Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan
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