Tesla Model X recalled over safety problem with its third-row seats

Tesla Model X

Tesla said Monday that it is issuing a recall for most of its Model X SUV models because of a safety problem with the vehicle’s seats. Tesla is asking that customers do not allow anyone to ride in the third row until the problem is fixed.

Tesla said an improperly made part could allow the seat to fold forward during a crash if a person is sitting in it.

The company has not reported any issues with the seats in real world crashes, but the company discovered the issue while performing its own safety checks.

The electric vehicle manufacturer is recalling 2,700 of the luxury SUVs — all that were made before March 26.

The test was required by safety regulators in Europe but not in the United States, a Tesla executive said.

Testers in the United States did not discover the issue but Tesla decided to error on the side of caution.

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“Our European customers and our US customers are equally important to us,” Jon McNeil, Tesla’s president of sales, service and delivery, said during a conference call with reporters.

The third-row seats in the Model X are manufactured by Australia-based supplier, Futuris. Tesla said Futuris will cover the costs of the recall. The second row seats in the vehicles are made by Tesla.

The problem was caused by a manufacturing defect in a seat part called the recliner, McNeil said, and not an inherent design flaw in the seat.

While not all seats will be affected, Tesla believes replacing all available models would be the most responsible course of action.

Tesla will ask owners to bring their vehicles to a service center to replace the seatbacks on both of the third row seats.

The company will soon contact all customers to setup a time to bring in their Model X for a repair.