Tesla asked to respond to all car owners’ quality complaints: experts
Published: Apr 22, 2021 08:48 PM
Photo taken on Jan. 7, 2020 shows an inside view of Tesla Shanghai gigafactory in east China's Shanghai.Photo:Xinhua

Photo taken on Jan. 7, 2020 shows an inside view of Tesla Shanghai gigafactory in east China's Shanghai.Photo:Xinhua

Since driving data is becoming key evidence in the determination of responsibility for accidents, Tesla should respond to all car owners' reasonable complaints to regain Chinese consumers' confidence, rather than only respond to one high-profile case, experts said on Thursday.

After receiving an order from 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 staffer at Tesla's Zhengzhou sales office.

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

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

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

In China 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.

Experts said that Tesla should respond to reasonable requests of all car owners rather than those who lodge complaints in a high-profile way, to regain Chinese consumers' confidence.

Jia Xinguang, a veteran car industry observer, told the Global Times that Tesla should offer driving data to market regulators, because this information is an objective tool to determine whether it's Tesla brake failure or the car owners' operating error.

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

"It's time for 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 the quality of its cars.

Tesla should earnestly carry out self-inspection of its products and make improvements to regain Chinese consumers' confidence, he said.