Telsa, Ford in major recall of thousands of vehicles

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In Australia, more than 15,000 Tesla electric vehicles are being recalled due to faulty taillights that authorities say “could increase the risk of a crash resulting in serious injury or death”.

The recall, published late Thursday, affects 15,914 Tesla Model 3 and Model Y vehicles sold in Australia by 2022.

It is the company’s second recall in just two weeks after more than 1,000 Tesla Model S and Model X cars were recalled on Nov. 16 due to driver error.

It also comes at a difficult time for the pioneering electric vehicle market, after shares fell to a two-year low earlier this week.

Australia’s latest Tesla safety issue involves a software flaw that affects the vehicles’ rear lights, according to the Transportation Department, including brake, reversing and rear indicators.

“Due to a software error, the taillights on one or both sides may not illuminate as intended,” the department warned.

“If this happens during dark conditions, following traffic will have less visibility and the vehicle may not be identified.”

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The problem is fixable through software and drivers have been urged to check if their vehicle needs a digital update.

The recall is Tesla’s third in Australia this month after a software issue with power steering in Model S and Model X vehicles was identified last week and 326 Model 3 vehicles were recalled due to a seatbelt problem on Nov. 2.

In the US, Tesla has also been hit by a recall involving nearly 30,000 Model X vehicles due to a malfunction of the front passenger airbag system. A similar recall has yet to be identified in Australia.

The company, led by CEO Elon Musk, has also faced a financial slump, with its stock price falling to a two-year low earlier this week, down 52 percent this year.

The drop followed Tesla’s taillight recall in the US, as well as ongoing supply chain issues and the rising price of raw materials.

Ford’s global recall amid engine fire fears

Tesla’s recall followed a similar action by Ford on Thursday. It is recalling 634,000 SUVs worldwide due to fire hazards from possible cracked fuel injectors, and urging owners to have their cars inspected.

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The No. 2 automaker in the US said the recall affected model year 2020-2023 Bronco Sport and Escape four-wheel drive with three-cylinder 1.5-liter engines.

Among them were many who were also recalled in April because an oil separator housing could burst and develop a leak that could cause an engine fire.

Vehicles repaired under the earlier call still require the new recall, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said.

Ford said when engines in the 4WDs subject to the latest recall were running, a cracked fuel injector could cause fuel or fuel vapor to build up near hot surfaces, potentially resulting in an under-hood fire.

Once repairs become available, dealers will update vehicle software to detect if a fuel injector has cracked and send a dashboard message to warn drivers.

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“If a pressure drop in the fuel rail is detected, engine power is automatically reduced to minimize any risk, while customers can also drive to a safe location, stop the vehicle and schedule service,” said Ford.

Dealers will also install a tube that drains fuel from the cylinder head and away from hot surfaces, and check for excessive fuel odor near the top of the engine.

The recall affects approximately 520,000 vehicles in the US and approximately 114,000 in other countries.

Ford said it had a total of 54 reports of 1.5 liter fires under the hood, including four involving burst fuel injectors.

About 13 others were probably caused by a leaking fuel injector.

There are no deaths associated with the recall.

Ford said it was not telling owners to stop driving vehicles under this recall.

The company predicted a low failure rate for fuel injectors with external leaks.

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