Elon Musk says Tesla will fix Model 3 braking issues after Consumer Reports slams the car for 'big flaws'

Mark Brake / Getty ImagesElon Musk said the Model 3 will receive a software update that will improve its braking system.

  • Tesla CEOElon Musk said the Model 3 sedan will receive a software update to address braking issues described by Consumer Reports.
  • The publication did not recommend the vehicle, criticising its stopping distance, touchscreen, ride quality, rear seat, and the amount of wind noise it produced while driving at highway speeds, while complimenting its range, handling, and acceleration.
  • Musk wrote that he was surprised by Consumer Reports’ account of Model 3 braking issues and said Tesla will roll out a software update to improve the vehicle’s braking system.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the Model 3 sedan will receive a software update to address braking issues described by Consumer Reports.

On Monday, Consumer Reports published its review of the Model 3 and stated that the vehicle had “big flaws.” The publication did not recommend the vehicle, criticising its stopping distance, touchscreen, ride quality, rear seat, and the amount of wind noise it produced while driving at highway speeds. The publication also complemented its range, handling, and acceleration.

The publication wrote that the distance the vehicle needed to go from 60 mph to a complete stop, 152 feet, was “far worse than any contemporary car we’ve tested.”

A Tesla representative told Business Insider the company recorded an average stopping distance from 60 mph of 133 feet and said stopping distance results can vary based on multiple factors.

Consumer Reports said its first test resulted in a stopping distance of 130 feet, but it was unable to replicate that distance, even after letting the vehicle’s brakes cool down overnight and testing a second Model 3.

On Monday evening, Musk responded to the review on Twitter. He wrote that he was surprised by Consumer Reports’ account of Model 3 braking issues and said Tesla will roll out a software update to improve the vehicle’s braking system.

“The CR braking result is inconsistent with other reviewers, but might indicate that some Model 3’s have longer braking distances than others,” Musk wrote. “If so, we will address this at our expense. First time we’ve seen anything like this.”

“Looks like this can be fixed with a firmware update,” Musk wrote in another tweet. “Will be rolling that out in a few days.”

Musk later wrote that Consumer Reports was testing an early production version of the Model 3 and said Tesla had made improvements to some of the elements the publication criticised.

Consumer Reports did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The Model 3 is Tesla’s first mass-market vehicle and was designed to broaden the company’s customer base beyond the luxury segment. But Tesla has struggled to ramp up production for the Model 3 since it was launched in July.

Business Insider hasn’t published a full review of the Model 3 yet, but senior correspondent Matthew DeBord wrote about his impressions after driving the vehicle for a few hours in February. He complimented the vehicle’s exterior and interior design, acceleration, handling, and ride quality, but had minor issues with the number of functions controlled by the touchscreen.

Early customer reviews were largely positive, praising the vehicle’s handling and acceleration while highlighting small, technical problems.

If you own a Model 3 and would like to share your thoughts about the vehicle, you can contact this reporter at [email protected]

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