The State Administration of Market Regulation and four other Chinese government departments have summoned US electric vehicle maker Tesla over consumer complaints on abnormal speeding, battery ignition, and OTA software updates.
The agencies urged Tesla to strictly abide by Chinese laws and regulations, to strengthen internal management, to effectively guarantee public safety and protect rights and interests of consumers, according to a post on the administration’s website on Monday.
“Tesla has sincerely accepted the guidance by the government departments and will deeply reflect on the shortcomings in the company’s business operation, and comprehensively strengthen internal inspection,” the company posted on its official Weibo account on Monday. It will effectively maintain public safety and better aid the healthy development of the Chinese new energy vehicle market, the firm added.
In one of the most recent incidents, a Model 3 vehicle ignited and exploded in Shanghai in January, without casualties. The EV maker attributed the origin to a collision at the bottom of the car, which caused the battery to burn, rather than to any internal malfunction.
Tesla founder Elon Musk admitted quality problems publicly at the beginning of this month, suggesting consumers not buy a Tesla during a new model’s ramp-up period.
“Musk’s words are a flagrant provocation against governments worldwide,” Zhang Xiang, an auto analyst with a government-affiliated think tank told KrASIA on Tuesday, adding that he suspects Musk’s straight words could be the main reason for the summons.
“Tesla may be requested to recall its vehicles, be fined or even asked to suspend production to undergo a reshuffle,” Zhang predicted potential additional measures in the future.