record sales but a bad image

Tesla is a solid world number one in electric cars and is preparing to break its production record once again. Excluding France, where registrations over the first ten months of the year have fallen by 10% according to AAA Data, while the electric car market there is growing by 28.7%, the results are flattering with sales exceeding 1.2 million units worldwide compared to less than 800,000 in 2021 at the same time, according to the company Inovev.

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Still, some discordant music is rising around the American brand. The most outstanding car manufacturer of the last ten years accumulates commercial successes, but also accumulates irritations. Starting with the stock market, which has plunged. Tesla shares have lost more than half of their value since the start of the year, falling from $399 (386 euros) to around $185 in recent days. A slide that sanctions a number of “bad buzz” which the brand must relate to.

Tesla, which appeared to be passing between the drops of the semiconductor crisis, could not escape the rigors of the zero Covid policy imposed by the Chinese authorities, which have long restricted its Shanghai megafactory, maker of the Model 3, to idle. On November 25, the same authorities ordered the recall of 80,000 Teslas for problems related to battery management and seat belt operation. Another episode in the flow of criticism that fell on the manufacturing quality of the cars produced by the manufacturer.

Cluttered reminders

Since January, Tesla has had to make nineteen recalls on its vehicles. These are various and diverse malfunctions in connection with the power steering or the rear lights, with the latter problem having resulted in a change to 321,000 vehicles. In most cases it was enough to perform a remote software update, but the repetition of recalls is starting to get messy, although the procedure is common in the automotive world and most manufacturers are not left out. . These concerns about reliability no longer seem to benefit from the same leniency. According to the American consumer association Consumer Reports, “Build quality remains a problem at Tesla”.

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Added to this are the recurring controversies linked to the “autopilot” system, which is regularly accused of causing accidents – the latest occurred in mid-November in China, killing two people. Controversial, the manufacturer’s technological choices regarding autonomous driving made him the focus of several investigations by the US administration, including the Department of Justice.

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