Tesla has rolled out a software update to a number of its Models S,
The NHTSA explained the problem in a recall letter Tuesday, noting that certain Model S vehicles. According to the announcement, the recall affects 199,575 vehicles with the 2023 model year that are equipped with software versions 2023.44.30 to 2023.44.30.6.
Tesla immediately shared a software update to fix the problem, and the letter states that NHTSA will send notification letters to owners on March 22. The NHTSA recall number for the issue is 24V-035, while the manufacturer's recall number is SB-24-00. 002. The report also said that Tesla rolled out software update version 2023.44.100.1 earlier this month after assessing the health of the affected vehicle and software versions.
The latest recall comes as many Tesla and electric vehicle (EV) owners have criticized the use of the term “recall” for issues that can be fixed with an immediate over-the-air (OTA) software update – rather than maintenance by the OEM.
Last month it was widely reported that 2 million Tesla vehicles were affected by a recall because Autopilot's Autosteer system did not provide enough safety controls for drivers. In response, Tesla implemented software version 2023.44.30, which addresses the issues by improving driver attention monitoring measures and making warning signs clearer.
Even Tesla CEO Elon Musk himself has commented on the use of the term “recall” in the past, calling it “anachronistic and just completely wrong” to use the word in the context of a software update last February.
Musk pointed out in 2022 that many of these problems did not cause injuries, adding that the term was outdated and inaccurate. Most automakers in the industry are also following Tesla and offering software updates to their vehicles for convenience, and some of them have also been recalled for simple OTA repairs.
Despite the criticism, NHTSA currently still defines such issues as recalls, even if no physical maintenance is required.
As of this writing, NHTSA and the Department of Transportation have not yet responded to Teslarat's request for comment on the development of new terminology for recalls resolved by software updates.