Tesla recalls record-breaking 1.1 million vehicles in China over regenerative braking issue
Tesla is issuing a recall for what seems to be all of its vehicles currently on Chinese roads, according to CnEVPost. The recall is Tesla's biggest to date in China, encompassing over 1.1 million vehicles — specifically, all of the locally-made units produced between January 12, 2019 and April 24, 2023.
The issue that prompted the recall is twofold, involving both driver habits and by the lack of regenerative braking intensity options relating to Tesla's one-pedal driving mode. China's State Administration for Market Regulation holds the position that the one-pedal driving mode that Tesla vehicles default to is prone to causing accidents, and it says that consumers need a way to select how regenerative braking is applied instead.
The claim that one-pedal driving modes could result in accidents holds some water, given prior evidence. There have been a number of situations where Tesla vehicles caused accidents that should have been impossible. It's not uncommon to hear drivers claim that they pressed down the brake pedal with the vehicle accelerating instead.
Investigations into these incidents, including one particularly dreadful one that happened last November in China, reveal that the accelerator pedal was fully depressed moments before the accident. This confusion comes from the behaviour that's been ingrained in drivers that are used to internal combustion engines that offer feedback before they accelerate and don't have the one-pedal driving mode.
Tesla plans to address the problem by issuing a software update to any vehicles affected by the recall. The software update in question restores the lowest intensity regenerative braking level and, perhaps more importantly, flashes a warning at the driver when the accelerator is fully depressed for extended periods.