Is your Tesla car's touchscreen not working? Fret not! Tesla just announced it will be refunding customers for the cost they paid for having their Model S and X repaired for the main computer malfunction that caused blank touchscreen. The refund will be covered by Tesla's Warranty Adjustment Program to cover the main computer unit (MCU) touchscreen error caused by an eMMC malfunction.

According to a CNBC report, the electric vehicle company finally acknowledges the longstanding problem on the memory device after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) launched an official investigation on the issue. It sent letter to owners of Model X and Model S electric cars that the company will refund them for repairs if they previously had to pay out-of-pocket to fix a problem in their main computers. This would have cost people up to $1,500.

Tesla Will Refund Customers for Cost of Tesla MCU Repair Due to Memory Chip malfunction in Model S and X
(Photo : Jp Valery/Unsplash)
Tesla Will Refund Customers for Cost of Tesla MCU Repair Due to Memory Chip malfunction in Model S and X

Tesla Touchscreen Not Working? Letter sent to Model X and Model S owners

Based on the copy of the letter obtained by CNBC, Tesla notified the owners of Tesla Model S/X built earlier than March 2018 that they may avail of Tesla's Warranty Adjustment Program. This will cover the malfunction of the embedded Multi Media Card. While this malfunction did not impact the owners' ability to drive their cars, it resulted in a blank touchscreen that made it useless.

Tesla will provide owners who experienced malfunction free repair or replacement of the 8GB eMMC at all Tesla Service Centers for up to for eight years from the delivery date or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first. Meanwhile, those who already shouldered the repair cost may reimburse the expense. The company will send eligibility and reimbursement details in February 2021.

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Tesla touchscreen error due to eMMC failure: What happened before?

The NHTSA launched an official investigation in June as the government agency received 11 complaints from owners of Tesla Model X and Model S electric cars before March 2018.

Tesla Will Refund Customers for Cost of Tesla MCU Repair Due to Memory Chip malfunction
(Photo : Bram Van Oost/Unsplash)
Tesla Will Refund Customers for Cost of Tesla MCU Repair Due to Memory Chip malfunction

NHTSA said it is investigating around 159,000 vehicles including Model S sedans built from 2012 to 2018, and Model X SUV's built from 2016 to March 2018. These vehicles allegedly experienced a blank touchscreen and other glitches in MCU caused by a faulty memory card.

In a Tesla car, the MCU powers the touchscreen, which drivers use to view and control for their navigation, air conditioning, entertainment, and other vehicle features. It contains processors, GPS, memory devices, and other technical devices.

In 2018, Tesla dropped its MCU-1 system, which used Tegra 3 and Nvidia Tegra 2 processors with 4GB or 8GB SK Hynix eMMC NAND memory devices, which I said to have faulty eMMC. It then began installing MCU-2 system with Intel Atom processor with Micron 64Gb storage chips.

Proposed Tesla eMMC class action

By expanding its warranty and refunding its customers for repair cost, Tesla may prevent a class action lawsuit filed by Tesla customers on May 13 in California. According to the case Tesla violated federal and state laws on fair marketing as well as consumer safety, vehicle warranties, and sales practices.

Ultimately, Tesla has prevented a mandatory recall as well as court battles or settlement that could cost millions if charges are proven true.

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Written bu CJ Robles

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