Tesla owners in China call for solutions to car quality problems, data sharing
Published: Apr 22, 2021 03:36 PM
Tesla Photo: VCG

Tesla Photo: VCG

While Tesla has finally agreed to offer vehicle data over crash of one of its vehicles in China, many other Tesla owners who have lodged complaints over a spate of defective functioning problems still eagerly wait for Tesla to contact them and respond to their concerns.

Industry observers said Tesla should provide vehicle data when it's required by the regulators as part of the proof to identity accident responsibility, and they pointed out that Tesla should conduct an internal review and give the public much needed answers regarding the causes and solutions for its car accidents.

After order by a local market regulator in Zhengzhou, Central China's Henan Province on Wednesday, Tesla replied that it will provide driving data for the 30 minutes prior to the crash of one of its vehicles to the government agency, and the car owner surnamed Zhang by 6 pm on Thursday, media reports said, citing a staff worker at Tesla's Zhengzhou sales office.

Zhang has made headlines after protesting against brake failure at Tesla's booth at the Shanghai 2021 auto show.

However, two other Tesla owners, who also lodged complaints over vehicle quality glitchess, told Global Times on Thursday that the company has not contacted them yet.

One of the car owners said that the latest action by Zhengzhou's market regulator gives him some relief because their protests have finally received official attention. The other Tesla owner surnamed Li, who also protested at the auto show, claimed that Tesla's response on Wednesday lacks sincerity, as the company takes no actions until the intervention of the regulator.

In China market alone, there have been several high-profile complaints over Tesla's brake malfunctions, but it's difficult for Tesla owners to safeguard their rights without access to driving data.

Jia Xinguang, a veteran car industry observer, told the Global Times that Tesla should offer driving data to market regulators to testify its innocence, rather than plainly denies car problems.

"As for Tesla's request for inspection from a third-party testing agency, it couldn't help much because the complex and numerous software equipped in a car are difficult to be inspected," he said, noting that the key lies in the driving data.

If it's found out through data analysis that the accident is caused by Tesla brake failure and not driver error, Tesla has to fulfill its duties to rectify their product quality, Li Weimin, director of Beijing Wei Bo Law Firm, told the Global Times on Thursday.

Li said that Tesla has the obligation to repair or refund defective vehicles for consumers, implement recall procedure of vehicles with same style and batch, and reveal the potential risks of its products to the public.

"It's time for the Chinese authorities to reach a conclusion as to what are the problems with Tesla cars," Jia said, noting that Tesla owes consumers an explanation over so many grievances about Tesla quality. 

Tesla should earnestly carry out self-inspection on its products and come up with improvements so as to regain Chinese consumers' confidence, he said.