Tesla is voluntarily recalling 2,700 of its Model X vehicles over a flaw in the third-row seat that may be dangerous in an accident. In the meantime, the company has advised owners via email that they should not use the third row seat until it is replaced.
The issue was discovered while doing seat strength tests ahead of releasing the Model X in the European market, a Tesla spokesperson told TechCrunch in an email. It seems the locking hinge that allows the rear seat to fold forward could fail, causing the seat back to go down during a crash. That hasn’t happened in the wild, fortunately, and Tesla is issuing the recall to make sure it never does.
Owners will be contacted further in order to schedule replacements, which should be completed over the next five weeks. Any Model X made after March 26 won’t have the issue; replacement hinges are already in place.
The seat backs were provided by a manufacturing partner, Futuris, which which Tesla will continue to work. The two companies co-developed the new design that is currently being installed.
Production won’t be affected, the spokesperson wrote — 750 (and growing) Model Xes are now rolling out of Tesla plants per week, which means the backlog of nearly 30,000 orders may actually be cleared this year.