Tesla Recalls 439 Roadsters Over Potential Fire Hazard

Tesla Motors has initiated a voluntary safety recall on its battery-electric Roadster 2.0 and 2.5 models following the discovery of a potential fire hazard involving an auxiliary power cable.

The California-based automaker said it became aware of the problem after a single incident where an auxiliary cable "chafed against the edge of a carbon fiber panel in the vehicle causing a short, smoke and possible fire behind the right front headlamp of the vehicle."

The affected 12 volt auxiliary cable is located in the passenger wheel well behind the right headlight. It is part of a backup system that provides power to systems including the front and rear lights, turn signals and airbags in the event the primary 12 volt power system fails or drops below a certain threshold.

Tesla said it has assured owners of the 439 affected Roadsters that it is merely a precautionary measure and does not affect the main battery pack or power systems in any way. It also does not affect Roadster 1.5 models (vehicles with a VIN ending in 500 or before), as these vehicles do not have the 12 volt auxiliary cable installed.

Owners of the affected models are being notified by email and post, and can make an appointment for Tesla service staff to inspect the cable and install a protective sleeve to prevent any further incidents. This can be done at the owner's home or place of work and takes approximately one hour. The appropriate regulatory agencies have also been notified.

By Tristan Hankins