Not for the first time, Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) is facing an investigation into the manufacturing of its cars. On Friday, the federal government's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced it will probe roughly 115,000 of the electric-vehicle maker's cars over a safety issue with their front suspensions.
The investigation is initially taking the form of a preliminary evaluation on the vehicles, specifically the company's 2015 to 2017 Model S sedans and its 2016 to 2017 Model X SUVs. The NHTSA received 43 complaints from consumers who detailed the failure of the left or right suspension fore links.
In February 2017, Tesla issued a service bulletin in which it said that such failures might occur because, "Some Model S and Model X vehicles may have been manufactured with front suspension fore links that may not meet Tesla strength specifications."
The company added that, "In the event of link failure, the driver can still maintain control of the vehicle but the tire may contact the wheel arch liner." The company suggested that the two suspension fore links be replaced.
Tesla has not yet commented on the NHTSA's announcement.
The NHTSA has probed various aspects of Tesla vehicles since nearly the beginning of the company's operations. Earlier this year, for example, the regulator announced that it was looking into reports of failures of the media control units (i.e., dashboard touchscreens) in certain Model S and Model X vehicles.
The NHTSA is compelled to investigate vehicle-related matters when it receives a significant number of complaints, so this is nothing far out of the ordinary for any manufacturer, let alone Tesla. Investors are therefore not likely to panic over this latest probe, although they should certainly keep an eye on it as it unfolds.