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Tesla is recalling 356,300 Model 3 Sedans to Fix Rear Backup Camera Wiring Issue

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【Summary】​Electric automaker Tesla is recalling all 2017-2020 Model 3 sedans produced between Jul 15, 2017 through Sept 30, 2020 to inspect and repair the rear view camera coaxial cable, which can be damaged from repeatedly opening or closing the trunk.

Eric Walz    Dec 31, 2021 8:45 AM PT
Tesla is recalling 356,300 Model 3 Sedans to Fix Rear Backup Camera Wiring Issue
Tesla is recalling roughly 356,000 Model 3 sedans to inspect the cable connecting the rearview camera to the dash display.

Electric automaker Tesla is recalling all 2017-2020 Model 3 sedans produced between Jul 15, 2017 through Sept 30, 2020 to inspect and repair the rear view camera cable, which can be damaged from repeatedly opening or closing the trunk. A break in the wiring can cause the rear view camera not to work.

The camera is activated whenever the vehicle is put into reverse so drivers have a clearer view of what's behind them.

On most vehicles, including the Tesla Model 3, the backup camera is located near the license plate. Tesla uses a common solid core coaxial cable to connect the camera to the center dashboard display on the Model 3, which is bundled in a wiring harness that runs along the trunk lid. The wiring harness is designed to flex whenever the lid is opened.

Over time, repeated opening and closing of the trunk lid may cause excessive wear to the coaxial cable. If the wear causes the core of the cable to separate, the rearview camera feed won't be visible in the dashboard display when putting the vehicle in reverse.

Rear view backup camera systems have been mandated on all vehicles sold in the U.S. since May 1, 2018, although many automakers have voluntarily offered backup cameras in earlier models.

Problems with the backup cameras due to a frayed cable have been reported in only 1% of the more than 356,000 Model 3s built by Tesla since 2017. 

As of Dec 16, 2021, Tesla identified 2,301 warranty claims and 601 field reports, which were received between Oct 2017 and Dec 2021. Tesla is not aware of any crashes or injuries related to the problem. 

Customers that paid to replace or service the trunk harness for this condition prior to the recall notification may be eligible for reimbursement as part of Tesla's General Recall Reimbursement Plan.

The problem was first discovered by Tesla's Field Quality team in June 2021. After failure analysis was performed on harness samples taken from vehicles with the suspected problem, it was determined that the harness flexing when the trunk was repeatedly opened and closed was the root cause.

The recall determination was made by Tesla on Dec 14.

The repairs are relatively simple, Tesla said its service teams will inspect and install a guide protector and new cable harness if necessary, free of charge.  

Tesla Model 3 owner notification letters are expected to be mailed Feb 18, 2022.

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