Tesla is issuing a massive recall in one of its key markets

Elon Musk’s Tesla  (TSLA) – Get Free Report is facing another blow, as recalls are being issued to vehicles in a key market the prolific brand sells EVs in. 

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Regulators in China said on Friday that 1.61 million vehicles made by the Austin, Texas-based electric car brand are being recalled to fix a problem with the brand’s Autopilot system. 

In a statement, China’s State Administration for Market Regulation said that the software as-is puts drivers at risk of misusing its function, which can increase the risk of collisions. 

Said recalls affect nearly all the vehicles in Teslas model range built between Aug. 26, 2014 and Dec. 20, 2023, and includes the Model S sedan, the Model X SUV, the Model 3 compact sedan and Model Y compact SUV, as well as Model 3 and Model Y vehicles made in China. 

Robotic arms install the front seats to the Tesla Model 3 at the Tesla factory in Fremont, California, on Thursday, July 26, 2018. 

The Washington Post/Getty Images

Tesla previously recalled more than two million Model S, Model Y, Model 3 and Model X vehicles in the United States over the same issues after stateside regulators found similar faults. 

The Chinese state regulators said that said issues can be fixed though an over-the-air software update, which would add controls and alerts that they say would “further encourage the driver to adhere to their driving responsibility.” 

China is a deeply important market for Tesla, where a crowded domestic EV market competes with Musk’s brand in an all-out free-for-all for market share. The Middle Kingdom is also home to BYD, one of Tesla’s fiercest competitors, as well as other manufacturers including Nio  (NIO) – Get Free Report and electronics giant Xiaomi, who has recently emerged into the EV space with the SU7. 

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Tesla is also involved in a second recall in China involving 7,538 imported Model S sedans and Model X SUVs built between Oct. 26, 2022 and Nov. 16, 2023. Chinese regulators stated that an issue in the door unlock logic control can cause doors in affected vehicles to unlatch and open during a crash. 

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