Tesla has recalled 158,000 Model S and Model X vehicles in the United States, citing the potential for “failures resulting in loss of [the] rear-view camera and other safety related vehicle functions.”
According to a letter sent by the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the affected models were built between 2012 and 2018.
The letter says "[these] vehicles were equipped with an NVIDIA Tegra 3 processor with an integrated 8GB [flash memory device]."
"Part of this 8GB storage capacity is used each time the vehicle is started, and the [flash memory device] hardware fails when the storage capacity is reached, resulting in failure of the main computer (MCU)," the letter continues.
This failure could also affect defogging/defrosting settings, autonomous systems, turn signal functionality, and driver alerts.
CarAdvice understands that Tesla Australia faced the same issue with local vehicles late last year, however chose not to recall stock.
Instead, it issued an optional warranty adjustment to owners in November 2020.
At the time, the company said the fault had "no impact on basic vehicle driving functionality and controllability."
However, this directly contradicts the NHTSA letter, which states "the failure of the media control unit constitutes a defect related to motor vehicle safety."
Tesla Australia declined to comment on the safety implications of the fault – or the potential for future recalls – when approached by CarAdvice.
This story will be updated when more information becomes available.