Tesla Is Recalling 9,500 SUVs After Recalling 30,000 More in China

Some of 2016 Model X SUVs have incorrectly installed roof trims that could fly off during driving.

A visitor experiences Tesla Model X during the 3rd China International Import Expo (CIIE) at the National Exhibition and Convention Center on November 5, 2020 in Shanghai, China. Guo Zhihua/VCG via Getty Images

With new car production growing at a record pace and its market value hitting an all-time high, Tesla is now finding itself increasingly having to deal with problems stemming from cars it already sold. The electric carmaker has recently issued two notices to recall more than 9,500 Model X and Model Y vehicles in the U.S. after discovering manufacturing flaws that might could cause key parts of the vehicles to fly off during driving.

The larger recall notice will affect 9,136 Model X SUVs made between September 2015 and July 2016. Model X have pieces of cosmetic trim, known as appliques, on their roofs that are adhered to the vehicle using urethane. The appliques were installed on some 2016 Model X’s without using primer, which could cause parts of the roof to come loose over time and potentially fly off while a car is in motion.

“While we are not aware of any accidents or injuries resulting from this condition, if the applique separates from the vehicle while in drive, it could create a road hazard for following motorists and increase their risk of injury or a crash,” Tesla said in the recall notice filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) last week.

The company estimates that only 10 percent of Model X SUVs on the recall list will have trim issues and promises to apply primer free of charge if needed.

Although the recall volume isn’t huge by auto industry standard, it represents a sizable chunk of all the Model X’s Tesla made and sold in 2016.

Model X delivery began in the third quarter of 2015. And the following year, 25,312 units were sold. Since then, Tesla’s total production and delivery have skyrocketed, largely driven by the rollout of Model 3. But sales of the higher-end Model X, priced at just below $80,000, has remained steady at around 50,000 units a year.

In another notice, filed with NHTSA on Tuesday, Tesla said it will also recall 401 new Model Y vehicles made in 2020 over a bolting issue. The company said some of those vehicles have bolts connecting the front upper control arm and steering knuckle that may not have been properly tightened.

No injuries or accidents has been reported due to this defect, Tesla said.

The pair of recall notices came just a month after Tesla recalled about 30,000 Model S and Model X vehicles in China over potential suspension defects. However, company claimed that the issues were caused by “driver abuse” rather than design or manufacturing flaws. Tesla Is Recalling 9,500 SUVs After Recalling 30,000 More in China