Tesla Semi to Get Door Issue Fix via Software Update
Tesla has issued a safety recall, identified as 23V-422, impacting an estimated 36 of its 2023 Semi truck models.
The recall is due to a defect detected in the Semi’s door closure warning system, an essential feature which the company has determined does not comply with the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 206.
The affected vehicles are those manufactured between November 30, 2022, and March 15, 2023, running software releases earlier than 2023.12.5.6. The Semi trucks affected are said to have a 100% probability of having the defect, according to Tesla’s internal investigations.
The recall was initiated on June 13, 2023, after Tesla engineers detected an anomaly in the door closure warning system during a routine internal software compliance audit on June 1, 2023. The software issue relates to how the system alerts the driver when the Semi’s rear-hinged side doors are not fully latched.
As per the FMVSS 206, S18.104.22.168, a visual signal is required when a door latch system is not in its fully latched position and the vehicle ignition is activated. However, in the affected Tesla Semi models, the warning system only activates when the vehicle’s parking brake is not engaged, and some vehicles allow the driver to dismiss the warning alert.
Tesla says there have been no recorded crashes, injuries, or fatalities connected to the issue. The company acknowledges, however, that a dismissible notification for an open side door may not adequately alert the operator, potentially increasing the risk of injury.
Tesla began developing a remedy for the issue in parallel to the investigation on June 2, 2023. The software update known as version 2023.12.5.6, introduces a dedicated non-dismissible warning that activates when a side door is open, regardless of the vehicle’s parking brake state.
This software remedy was deemed compliant with FMVSS 206, S.22.214.171.124 by Tesla’s Homologation team, and has been deployed to the affected vehicle fleet as an over-the-air software update since June 6, 2023. Tesla Semi owners will receive the fix free of charge and do not require any pre-notice reimbursement as there is no paid repair related to the problem. This is where Tesla’s innovative software updates shine as fixes can be addressed remotely.
Notification letters are scheduled to be mailed to the owners of the affected vehicles on August 11, 2023, following the notification of Tesla Semi Service teams on June 15, 2023. Any Tesla Semi trucks manufactured but not yet delivered with a non-compliant software release will receive the updated software release 2023.12.5.6 or a later release prior to delivery.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk recently stated high volume mass production of the Semi now won’t take place until late 2024.