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Tesla recalls nearly 300,000 cars in China over cruise control safety issue

Philip Wang, CNN

Tesla began recalling more than 285,000 vehicles in China on Saturday over a safety risk concerning the vehicle’s cruise control feature.

The cruise control system in certain models can be activated when drivers try to shift gears or accidentally touch the gear selector, resulting in accidental acceleration, according to China’s State Administration for Market Regulation.

The recall includes 35,665 imported Model 3 vehicles and 249,855 Model 3 and Model Y vehicles made in Tesla’s factory in Shanghai. Customers will not be required to return the vehicles. Instead, they will receive a free software update either remotely or in-person to resolve the issue.

Tesla apologized for the recall on Saturday in a statement posted on its official Weibo account, one of China’s most popular social media sites. Tesla said it will keep improving in accordance with China’s safety regulations.

“We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause to our car owners. In the meantime, Tesla will strictly follow national regulations and keep improving our safety protection, adamantly providing an excellent and safe driving experience to our customers,” the automaker said.

China has proven to be a difficult market for Tesla. The company has had five Chinese regulatory agencies questioning the quality of its Shanghai-made Model 3 cars.

The electric car leader sold fewer than 26,000 cars in China in April, down 27% from March, according to figures released by the China Passenger Car Association. The drop came as Chinese electric vehicle manufacturers such as Nio (NIO), Xpeng, and Li Auto, all reported improved domestic sales.

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